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With rampant overdrive and reverb, the warehouse music Alex Ridha pulls into yet another Boys Noize mix grabs its listeners by the chest and throws them into a dark dance floor filled with sonic booms, thuds, and hisses. In the culture surrounding this music one can find leather-clad punks bouncing from dusk to dawn to repetitive acid-synth arpeggios in clubs around the globe. A complex melting pot of techno, punk rock, and disco house gives Boys Noize the unique sounds and image many associate with the project.
There is something beautifully sinister to be found in the sweaty incantations that a mix like this places over its listeners. In this featured mix for The Ransom Note, Ridha teases out samples from and remixes of tracks in Mayday, his latest feature length album. Listeners can hear vocals from “Overthrow,” “Euphoria,” and “Midnight” cutting in and out between hypnotic kick drums and erratic breaks.
In an interview with The Ransom Note that accompanies the release of the mix, Ridha opens up about the inspiration, motivation, and history behind his music. Tracing his roots back to the 1980s house with names like Farley Jackmaster Funk, Steve Silk Hurley, Marshall Jefferson, and DJ Pierre, Ridha accounts his early days in DJing as a 15-year-old in Berlin gay and house clubs.
The atypical culture surrounding Boys Noize mentioned above seems rooted in Rihda’s 1990s experiences, such as seeing 2manyDJs mixing techno with punk-rock by Iggy & the Stooges. Ridha ends the mix by mixing punk rock with techno, enigmatic of the Boys Noize project, but also historically ironic because Iggy Pop hated techno. When interviewers ask, “what does your music sound like,” Ridha responds appropriately: it’s like “punching into a sunny side up egg.” Ridha’s jovial attitude brings to mind the yellow smiley face symbol iconic to acid house and adopted under the Boys Noize name for nostaligic merchandise. The interview is full of comical remarks by Ridha, and the mix features a transformed vocal with his unique “drink more water” introduction, which is a recurrent trope throughout many of his mixes.
Listen to the mix here:
H/T: The Ransom Note
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