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Evian Christ

The Cheshire, England-based Joshua Leary produces abstract, industrial-tinged hip-hop and trance-influenced experimental club music as Evian Christ. The artist first received attention for an atmospheric set of instrumental hip-hop tracks titled Kings & Them (2012), then went on to produce material for rappers including Kanye West, Travis Scott, and Danny Brown. He largely focused on art installations and events such as his TranceParty club nights for nearly a decade before his long-awaited debut album, Revanchist, arrived on Warp in 2023. The son of a trance DJ, Leary was raised in a small town near Liverpool. Eight tracks recorded in his garage using Cubase were gathered for his debut, Kings & Them, released in February 2012 as a free digital download through Tri Angle -- home to recordings from the likes of How to Dress Well and Clams Casino. A few months later, a vinyl edition was made available for retail. Duga-3, a seamless mix of original ambient work inspired by reading about a Soviet radar system, was granted to Dummy magazine, and subsequently appeared on limited-edition Tri Angle vinyl for Record Store Day 2013. Along with five other producers, he contributed to "I'm in It," one of the leaner tracks from Kanye West's Yeezus. The album was released just prior to Leary's performance at the 2013 Pitchfork Music Festival in Chicago. The following March, the producer released the four-track Waterfall EP, featuring the pungent "Salt Carousel," on Tri Angle. Leary contributed production to albums by Tinashe, Le1f, Travis Scott, Danny Brown, and others. He helped spearhead a trance revival with his influential TranceParty events, which featured performances by hip-hop and electronic artists including Scott, Bladee, SOPHIE, Arca, and A.G. Cook. Leary and collaborator David Rudnick further explored the genre with two art installations, The Trance War (1998-Ongoing) (2015, ICA London) and Re:Load (2017, Moscow International Biennale), presenting archival materials along with original works. His first solo release in six years, a euphoric ambient trance track named "Ultra," appeared on Warp in 2020. He also worked with Visionist and grime emcee K9 on the song "Abyss." Revanchist, a full-length fusing his trance and experimental hip-hop sides, appeared in 2023.
© Andy Kellman & Paul Simpson /TiVo


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