One of techno’s most versatile artists, Boxia, has made his Balkan debut with a new four-track EP, 1998. Altogether different from what you may expect from the DJ and producer, 1998 blends elements from acid, techno, rave and ambient to bring a wholly fresh listening experience.
The “Ariel Acid (Biology Mix)” kicks things off on the darker end of the spectrum, and as you might’ve guessed, with an acidic kick. Posthuman’s description of it as “dungeon acid doom” couldn’t be more accurate. Acid melodies spiral over a driving bassline, with spooky synths firmly putting the dungeon and doom in “dungeon acid doom”. Despite the eeriness, “Ariel Acid” remains a bop. Though largely associated with Drumcode, those who have seen Boxia out and about at their local events know that his sound is far from one dimensional.
Title track “1998” stands to further prove this. Stripping things back to basics, “1998” is feel good, summery dance music at its finest. Neat, cheerful chords take the lead for the majority of the track, with the changing bassline intensity allowing for moments of either relaxation or rave — both are incredibly enjoyable.
The EP is rounded off with two different mixes of “Call Me Romantic”; the “Love Will Save The Day Mix” and the “Love Will Save The Day Vocal Mix”. Edging into heavily nostalgic territory, the “Love Will Save The Day Mix” will hit you right in the feels — and have we ever needed to hear that message more? It’s ethereal, full of shimmery synths and brimming with emotion; if you weren’t already aware of Boxia’s range, here it is in (almost) all its glory (we know you’ve got those 90s rave bangers hidden somewhere too). The “Love Will Save The Day Vocal Mix” is much the same, with the added vocals whispering “love will save the day” on repeat, which feels like the icing on the cake with this one. The EP serves as a glorious glimpse into Boxia's lesser-heard sounds.
1998 can be streamed and purchased via Bandcamp.