Originally from Batemans Bay, Canberra-based Yiannis Nikodellis is one active bod. In between DJing and making music under the name Yokelust, he’s also an artist (most notably the recent ‘Cover Yourself In Canberra’ campaign); he also makes his own music videos and he keeps a tight social media presence. And did I mention that he works two day jobs?
“I like having a lot of things going on. I like to be very busy,” says Yiannis. The DIY electronic music maker has been bubbling away on this album, his second under his Yokelust moniker, for three years and it sees him squarely in his old school house and disco era, genres that he also loves to play when DJing.
“This album took me so long because I wasn’t doing it full time,” says Yiannis. “Sometimes I’d be like, ‘Yeah, let’s make music’ or ‘Let’s make music videos’ and really go into it. Then at other times, I’m like, I’ve just got no engagement in that right now because I’m working on something else.
Like a lot of younger electronic musicians, the set up is simple: just a laptop, headphones and a mic.
“I started working on electronic music from around 2008 and I used to record vocals on my little webcam microphone. Now I have a higher quality USB microphone, I upgrade my MacBooks every couple of years and I’m just using Ableton Live.”
Of the album, the 34-year-old says: “As I’ve gotten older, the music that I’ve made has gotten older. I’ve always been kinda obsessed with samples. Obviously a lot of house is just sampled disco, sampled vocals and snippets of things. I’ve tried to keep it very classic and very clean.”
While some audiences might’ve seen Yokelust performing live (and DJing!) at last year’s Alter Ego party at the National Portrait Gallery, don’t be expecting to see him performing the album live any time soon.
“I like making this kind of music because I could DJ this kind of music. Live performance has never been a driver for me,” he says.
Besides, he’s got other things to catch up on. Now the album’s out, Yiannis’s main focus is launching an online shop that will feature a new line of merchandise that he’s been working on.
“I’ll probably be working on music in the background that’s a little bit more chill and experimental and there’s some stuff that didn’t make it onto this album that I want to tidy up and will probably put out an EP this year. I do whatever I feel like doing, that’s why I’m independent!”
Download ‘Unabashed’ at https://yokelust.bandcamp.com/album/unabashed