The explosive center of Boys Noize

By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  November 26, 2012


In recent years, the ascent of electronic music has caused some anxiety among the sensitive and the conservative. After all, this is more than machine replacing man; it is, to believe the Luddites, a sapping of mankind's creative potential, allowing machines to create perfect sounds that erase human inaccuracy, valuing consistency over heart. Luckily, this is an inaccurate depiction of electronic music — and Exhibit A for the defense is the working style of Alex Ridha, a German DJ and producer who since 2004 has been slowly making a name for himself with his alter-ego, Boys Noize. "Here's what I want to do: I want to blow people's heads off," Ridha explains with a laugh.

Jawohl! But Ridha isn't just looking for musical explosions — he's into electronic music as a means of exploration, and he isn't ashamed to admit to his music's light side. "My approach to making music is very uncomplicated — I just want to make music that is fun. Music shouldn't be that serious." He pauses in thought and, in his deep German accent, continues: "It should trigger emotions in the human." And though that might sound a tad clinical, think of it as a playful insight to his inquisitive personality. "I love electronic music because it has no rules — especially in how it's made. I mean, I could, right now, record this phone call and sample it, make a beat out of it, and that could be cool! That's a piece of electronic music, and that's what I love. I don't have to write a great melody, I don't have to write a great song. If it happens, that's great — but the original idea of electronic music is exploration and sound."

Not that Ridha doesn't fill this fall's Out of the Black (INgrooves) with tons of great melodies and great songs amidst the sonic chaos and reckless Möbius-strip-surfing. From the robotic opening intonation of "This is what you want, this is what you get" to the closing stomp of the Snoop Dogg–assisted "Got It," synthetic sounds and strange warped noises fold in on themselves in a nonstop electro mindfuck. Ridha attributes the human rhythm at the center of his music to his coming up in Hamburg, where his let-accidents-happen approach allowed him to create this behemoth: "I grew up with punk and early house, because it had heart; when I heard techno, like what Berlin is known for, I thought it was soulless. They hated house because it wasn't rough and tough enough — but I need that human center. When you play with a track, let random things happen, wires cross and sounds change, it's awesome, it's what I love about making electronic music."

HARD PRESENTS BOYS NOIZE:: House of Blues, 15 Lansdowne St, Boston :: December 2 @ 7pm :: 18+ :: $25 :: 888.693.2583 or


Related: Photos: Timbaland at House of Blues, Photos: Spoon at the House of Blues, Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings | I Learned The Hard Way, More more >
  Topics: Music Features , Music, Alex Ridha, BOYS NOIZE,  More more >
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