"It is electronic music played by humans with a need to process real emotions while imitating robots." …We couldn't have described it any better. Originating as the brainchild of singer, songwriter, producer, and frontman Oli Bayston, Boxed In is a four-piece electronic band hailing from London, UK.
Following suit to their 2015 genre-bending self-titled debut album, Boxed In's 2016 Melt record is an 11-track collection of organically-produced electronic rhythms and emotive songwriting. The band successfully defies dance music's idle DJ stereotype with dynamic soundscapes that effectively translate into an energetic live performance that's "all about getting the crowd to move while [they] perform."
Today, Ones To Watch hosts your first listen of "Unable," the latest from Boxed In ahead of its double-single release with "Pushing On" tomorrow, May 12. Both "Unable" and "Pushing On" were originally released exclusively on vinyl for UK Record Story Day.
Bayston shared on the making of the track,
“I’m really pleased to be releasing ‘Unable.’ It’s a track I wrote with the Rosie Lowe a couple of years back when we were both in quite similar head spaces. She’s a great musician, and it was a real pleasure sharing that experience with her.”
Get to know Oli from Boxed In in our exclusive Q&A, then reserve your spot to see the band live with upcoming LA & NYC tour dates below.
May 15, Los Angeles, CA: School Night @ Bardot (RSVP here)
May 18, New York, NY: Private Show (apply for guest list here)
OTW: Why did you choose to pair "Pushing On" and "Unable" on this release? Can you give us a bit of background on the creative process/inspiration behind each track?
Oli: I wanted to have a theme to the Record Store Day release that would separate from a standard Boxed In release. I spend a lot of time collaborating and producing other musicians outside Boxed In, and these have come from those sessions. “Pushing On” was the first track George FitzGerald and I ever wrote together. "Unable" is a track written by myself and the amazing singer Rosie Lowe.
OTW: What is the story behind the name, Boxed In?
Oli: Boxed In is a loosely termed reference to my favorite Francis Bacon painting, Head VI. Deleuze once described that painting as “the operation through which the entire body escapes through the mouth.” I see this phrase as the definition of songwriting and personal expression.
OTW: How did you initially develop the sound you're now known for?
Oli: The Boxed In sound probably emerged in parallel with my two loves, Krautrock & House. I guess I’ve taken influence from both genres and tried to form a sound of my own.
OTW: There's a lot of ways to define your music…if you were describing it to someone who's never heard of it, what would you say?
Oli: It’s electronic music played by humans with a need to process real emotions while imitating robots.
OTW: What can we expect to see/hear/feel at your upcoming LA/NYC performances?
Oli: We’re keep our live show as energetic as possible. It's all about getting the crowd to move with us while we perform. Particularly when we’re playing towns that we don’t often visit, we like to leave a mark by getting people dancing.
OTW: Who are 3 artists on your Ones To Watch list (up and coming) and why?
Oli: Hudson Scott - he’s an amazing singer from London with a healthy nod to Arthur Russel and Shuggie Otis, two of my favorites.
Zola Blood - another London band with a big heart and loads of deep, emotive turns to boot. Their album is out in two weeks.
Moiré - Amazing house producer who’s just released a really deep album. It has some interesting collaborations as well. Not to be missed.
OTW: What's next for Boxed In? What's the ultimate goal?
Oli: We’ll be hitting the festival circuit this summer, which is the best part of the year for Boxed In. The ultimate goal is to never be bored, to never stay stagnant and to always be challenged.