Known as Alex Ridha to his Mammy, Boys Noize has been unapologetically banging out techno since 1996. When he could no longer find the records he wanted in the stores of Hamburg and Berlin he started making his own. In 2004 Boys Noize arrived with -The Bomb’, the first of a series of 12’s. Known for his old-school production consisting of analogue sounds, Boys Noize records mangle already irresistable drum machine beats with phat old synths, bombarding the listener and showing no mercy along the way. Debut album Oi Oi Oi was further proof of his technical ability.
Boys Noize isn’t just a production wizard, he’s puppeteer. State arrives into The Academy on Friday night to pumping fists; there’s not a punter on the floor that doesn’t have at least one arm raised. Guiding and reading the crowd reaction, Ridha is playing tracks that lift, build and drop in all the right places. During the build up to -Come With Me’ there’s a sense of anticipation. A modulation twist here, some thwhacking synth there and sudden beat changes, it’s an adventure in sonic whizzbangery.
Tonight we’re celebrating the launch of Boys Noize’s second LP Power and its quite the party. Like the album, it’s lairy, noisy and a little bit filthy. Germanic by origin Ridha has a Gallic flare with the relentless drive of MSTRKRFT and Justice-like distortion, though Boys Noize’s sound is all his own – cleaner and harder than his French counterparts.
As the night wears on, we get bits and pieces of other artists from The Streets’ ‘Blinded by The Lights’ to his own vocal remix of Feist’s ‘My Moon My Man’. At the climax of his rip-roaring set he drops what can only be described as a song from a Thunderdome compilation and melts it into The Prodigy’s ‘No Good (Start the Dance)’. It’s a moment that has everyone turning to each other mouthing under the sheer loudness: ‘Is that?.. Did he just?’. Yes, he did and how. A cracking Friday night set.
Photos by Fionn Kidney.