Album Review: Boys Noize – Out Of The Black [incl. full stream]
Boys Noize. The tekno overlord, known for slaying DJ sets, producing some of the world’s favorite electronic productions over the last 5 years, scouting amazing up and coming talent and running his label Boys Noize Records. Only the highest of praise is usually given to Mr. Alex Riddha over the years. Why? Because he’s deserved it, plain and simple. So we should automatically pass off his 3rd album Out Of The Black as electro genius, right?
Not so fast. Boys Noize may be doing everything right career-wise, essentially turning himself into an electronic music mogul over the last 2 years, but after critical analysis of the productions on Out Of The Black we may conclude that the genius of one such tekno mastermind might be outdated and/or not up to par with the current landscape. Or we might conclude that this is just the next step in tekno, and Boys Noize – like he’s done before – is going to take us there. With a new live show and setup set to debut for the first time this fall around the world, he’s certainly set himself up to be THE tekno champion. The one to wake up the world.
But in order for that to happen this album had to be on point. It had to have the versatility to tap into multiple markets. It had to have the rawness that a true tekno fan can appreciate. What’s our verdict? It does all these things, and very very well at that.
The album shows all sides of the Boys Noize we know and love. From the hellish electro to the melodic disco influenced electronica, Out Of The Black has it all with a few surprises to boot. It kicks off with two previously released singles What You Want and XTC, two larger than life electro ballads that really do the trick when played out louder than loud levels. Crowd pleasers as the first two tracks on an album draw your attention, and that’s when Alex hits you with a Missile, literally. Missile is a stop and go tekno track Boys Noize is known to support and produce, followed by ICH R U which has the melodic components reminiscent of Yeah and Oh!. Rocky 2 follows up with a rolling beats and harsh synths, rock and roll like in flavor, heavy tekno in nature. Circus Full of Clowns sees Boys Noize experiment with slowed down beat and a pulled down vocal.
The album picks back up with the co-production w/ Siriusmo, Conchord. Trademarked hypnotizing chord progression and perfectly placed stabs turn this one into a festival brain scrambler and peak time jam. Touch It sees another more melodic track with french electro influences and emphasis on vocoded vocals that sound a little like Daft Punk. Reality is next up, and takes listeners on an acid filled journey through tones and dark synths. Merlin is an effectively repetitive track that plays with tension through tonal and pitch changes, which is followed by a pure electro track Stop which really doesn’t stop at all through the whole track, instead hitting the listener with wave after wave of sound. Last, and certainly not last on the album, is Boys Noize’s collaboration with Snoop Dogg, which brings mainstream appeal to the realm of tekno and effectively merges rap with roots electronica while still keeping it fresh for club play.
Overall, Boys Noize certainly does the trick with Out Of The Black, able to keep his Boys Noize sound current and appealing to multiple markets while still keeping original Boys Noize fans happy. The future certainly looks bright for him, and we can’t wait for the Boys Noize LIVE tour to hit the states.