Korean Indie Interview: Tripper Sound’s Coreyah
There are countless record labels in Korea from the well-known frontrunners like LOEN Entertainment, to the lesser-known fighters like Dynasty Muzik. One of these not so well-known companies rising up and making an impact in Korea right now is Tripper Sound, home to some of the most diverse and crowd pleasing groups the alternative Korean music scene has to offer. Beyond Hallyu have been fortunate enough to connect with the company and get interviews with each of the groups offering you an insight into how each views international reaction to the Korean music scene and what influences them to be a part of it. We will be bringing these interviews to you one by one over the next few weeks.
The first group we are introducing you to is Coreyah, the traditional group who grasps onto the roots of many sounds and mixes it in a way that both moves fans and makes them one with the beauty of Korean culture.
Can you introduce our readers to your group and tell us how you formed?
Coreyah is a Korean/world music band consisting of four Korean traditional musical instrument players, one guitarist, and one world percussionist. The group’s unique composition allows them to blend a wide range of genres; pansori (a traditional Korean narrative song), western rock, Gypsy music from the Balkan Peninsula, South American music, and African music (the final two of which are a juxtaposition of both sorrow and joy). Coreyah started as a project team in 2010, but this was later turned into the band we are now. Until now, Coreyah have released 1 single and 1 album but this is not the bands only activities as we have also worked on making a musical drama.
How would you describe your music to a first time listener in just three words?
Different, Bizarre and Mesmerizing.
How do you feel about the positive response alternative Korean music is having with fans outside of Korea?
Nowadays we can listen to similar music genres anywhere in the world; however there is still an innate emotion which represents each region that music comes from. Korean lyrics give off a unique feeling along with the traditional instruments such as the Geomungo and Daegum which would not be heard outside of Korean music. It is this unique sound that Coreyah captures.
Does the music you listen to influence the music you create? Who are you currently listening to?
We usually listen to and are influenced by various types of music from all over the world; from traditional music to trendy dance music. Recently we have been listening to Malian singer Ali Farka Toure whose music showed a mix of traditional Malian music mixed with North American Blues. We think it’s rather similar to Korean folk songs.
If you could pick 2 places around the world to tour where would they be and why?
India and Brazil. We have already experienced the European music scene several times before so we have a curiosity about visiting new regions. Because of the population in both India and Brazil both these places have huge music scenes and are known for constantly reinterpreting their traditional music and bringing it to a more modern audience. We are curious about how they would view our music and listen to it.
Do you think k-pop gets too much attention and takes away the limelight from other artists both in Korea and internationally amongst fans?
Nope because at least this means that all Korean musicians are getting the chance to receive attention now. When we go abroad fans think we are K-pop idol groups however because of this they generally welcome any Korean music regardless of the genre. In this way it is easier to introduce further genres of Korean music to a wider fan base.
Where are your favourite venues to play?
The acoustic venues which are small and pleasant. We personally think it is hard to transmit our feelings across to the audience when there are too many microphones and far too many members in the audience. We are like to perform and share our music in venues which minimize microphones and audience members, allowing them instead to be filled with the natural sound of the instruments.
Is there anything you would like to say to our readers?
Korean music is full of variety and depth. Please take an interest in the contemporary Korean folk music which Coreyah seeks to show you.
Thank you very much to Tripper Sound for setting up the interview with Coreyah and to the group for taking time out of a busy schedule to answer some of our questions.