As Boys Noize Record’s very own Jensen Interceptor began to wind down from a refreshingly heavy opening set, a figure donning a red baseball cap made its way behind the booth, holding one hand up triumphantly. Jensen bowed offstage graciously, and the crowd erupted in a cacophony of cheers and wild howls, before being drowned out by the warped synths and pulsating bass that began rising from the speakers. Alexander Ridha, better known by his pseudonym Boys Noize, had taken the stage.
Spearheading what is arguably one of the most distinguished and influential imprints in modern electronic, techno and dance music, German-born producer and DJ Alex Ridha is no stranger to the game. Continuing a steady release of music since founding Boys Noize Records in 2005, Ridha has left countless musical marks on the world resembling his signature sound, whilst still encompassing and leading a wave of neo genres, constantly breaking the stereotypes surrounding the norm with acid techno, his hip hop influences, and high energy flavours.
Since releasing his ‘Mayday’ LP last May, Ridha has been consistently playing shows around the world through club appearances, solo tours, festivals and anti-establishment street pop ups. He finally brought his world famous Warehaus Tour to Sydney, joining a sold-out Metro Theatre full of adoring fans. Ridha was locked in for a three hour set, and held the crowd in his hand from the very first few bars of his opener, “Overthrow”. Backed simply on stage by three banners, and a light show to leave you needing a moment to refocus, Ridha was visibly enjoying the crowd’s unabashed screams of awe as he transitioned into “Rock The Bells”.
Eyes beaming with joy (and some slightly unbalanced jawlines) filled every corner of the Metro as strobes flashed moments of light across the dim lit and bass filled theatre. Boys Noize commanded led the room back and forth through a journey of his various original tunes, featured remixes and friends’ hits. Saying not a word, but having a cheeky cigarette or two throughout his set as his danced along behind his equipment and let out the occasional smile or chuffed giggle, Ridha took form of someone residing over a council or committee; the bodies that filled the space in front of him sang, danced and moved along to each different beat that was conducted for them by their leader.
Fast approaching the three hour mark, Ridha dropped a remix of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant song”, the audience mouthed along to the shrill screams of the classic hit’s intro, Ridha’s signature sinister blend of techno, industrial and acid sounds coalescing to cheers. The night went on with a showcase of some of Ridha’s personal tastes, exhibiting remixes that echoed through, and once again blending in those signature Boys Noize taste including reworks of Talking Heads, Gesaffelstien, and The Chemical Brothers.
Heaving basslines continued to engorge the room and those within it — as the beats per minute sped up, the beams of light and strobes did the same. Everyone danced along in wonderment as Ridha brought things to a close, mixing his signature sounds in with familiar trap and hardstyle beats. We had witnessed a revolution, led by the overlord of techno music himself.
Photos by our boy Keegan Thomas.