Ahead of the release of his long-awaited debut album, Revanchist, Evian Christ unleashes the ecstatic ‘Yxguden,’ featuring Bladee.
Back in 2016, for the fifth instalment of his legendary Trance Party, Joshua Leary, the Ellesmere Port producer and DJ known as Evian Christ, booked producer Yung Sherman alongside Mssingno, Total Freedom, Kamixlo, Manara and others for a night he would dub ‘Trance Welbeck Vs. Progressive Welbeck.’ Two years later, for Trance Party Vs. Year0001, he would book him again, only this time alongside none other than Drain Gang CEO Bladee. It was the start of a beautiful relationship between the artists, a relationship that blossomed into collaboration for the first time on ‘Yxguden,’ the euphoric peak of Evian Christ’s long-awaited debut album, Revanchist.
The track’s title translates from Swedish as ‘Axe God,’ a reference to a character depicted in a Bronze Age petroglyph at Flyhov, Sweden, who serves as the central character of both the album and the ‘Yxguden’ video, directed and featuring the work of legendary artist Micha Klein, arguably the originator of the Y2K aesthetic. Interpolating the hook from Hixxy’s happy hardcore masterpiece ‘More & More,’ alloying its sugar-rush hook with Drainer esotericism, Evian Christ and Bladee conjure a soaring anthem for the axe god, playing eye-lid twitching euphoria off against washes of aquatic ambience. “When I sent it to David, he said it sounded like a Calvin Harris song that’s been submerged in the seabed,” recalls Leary of the first time he showed the track to designer David Rudnick.
As the co-director of the ‘Yxugden’ video and the mastermind behind all of the visuals of Revanchist, which collage hyper-saturated trance edits of paintings by Norwegian artist Lars Hertervig with Yxuden, the piper from the old BT logo and a crystalline baby, Rudnick shares in Leary’s love of the Bronze Age figure, casting the god as symbol for joy and vitality, the beating heart of Revanchist. “It became part of the furniture in my brain,” says Leary of Yxguden. “He’s the protagonist of the record somehow, in some way. I went the extra mile and went to see it at Flyhov, it never left me.” Arriving as the third single from the album, ‘Yxguden’ embodies the ecstatic onslaught of Trance Party, a sublime ode to joy that stands as a testament to the exuberant spirit of the party, as well as that of Evian Christ himself.
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