OXIA: I like the groove & the energy

We are stoked to present to you our next guest - OXIA!

Following the critically acclaimed release of his beautiful summer single Shadows on Lee Burridge's All Day I Dream, a number of impressive remixes for the likes of Joseph Capriati, Agoria, John Digweed and Black Circle, and several remixes on Diversions including the latest for Julian Millan's Kamelhyn EP, Diversions Music label boss OXIA now returns to his much loved imprint for his first original release on the label this year, as he announces the stunning three-part Fate EP.

Out now, alongside a brace of remixes from Matt Sassari and Dense & Pika, OXIA's Fate EP sees the Grenoble-based stalwart return on the form of his career, as he delivers his first EP on Diversions since the release of Second Mood in 2019. We caught up with the iconic French talent to find out more...
Hello Olivier, great to have you with us! How are you today?
— Hello, thanks to you, it's a pleasure, I'm fine I hope you too.
Where in the world are you right now?
— I'm in my hometown, where I live, in Grenoble, France.
What's the music scene like in Grenoble right these days?
— Like everywhere I guess, it is trying to recover from the pandemic, although unfortunately it's not over yet.
But if not it is doing well, there are a lot of young artists who are doing interesting things. And I played there last week with my friend Agoria in a venue called La Belle Electrique, and we had a great night, sold out, and a great atmosphere...
Massive congratulations on your brand new release 'Fate' on your label Diversions. Can you talk to us more about this record?
— Thanks, glad you like it. It's a techno oriented track, but quite groovy. As always when I make music, I don't really think about it, I just do what comes into my head, and as I like a lot of different things in electronic music, sometimes I do more melodic or softer tracks, and sometimes this kind of more "techno". And so this is release on our label (with Nicolas Masseyeff), Diversions Music. And we chose to ask remixes to Dense & Pika and Matt Sassari, who made very good remixes.
As you mentioned, the single comes with an epic remix package from Matt Sassari and Dense & Pika, both of whom are making their debut on the label. How did the connection come about and what do you think they each bring to the release?
— Yes they made each one of them very good remixes, quite different from the original, so each one brought his touch, rather minimal for Matt's remix and an up-tempo, earth-shattering one for Dense & Pika. They are using the sounds of the original, but completely differently, so that's what's interesting about these remixes.
As far as the connection goes, I've known Matt for a while, and I've played a lot of his tracks, so it was pretty natural that we asked to do this remix. For Dense & Pika, I also follow a lot of what they do, and play some of their tracks. And so we thought about who to ask for another remix, and we agreed on them, quite simply.
Going back to your early raving days, can you tell us when you fell in love with electronic music?
— It was a long time ago, at the very beginning, with first house tracks coming from Chicago or NYC. I listened mainly to Funk at that time, even if I listened of course to other things, like New Wave, Rock... But Funk took a big place in my life, I was doing it with some friends of which Stephane Deschezeaux with whom I created OXIA at the base, before continuing alone. So, we were doing a Funk show on a small local radio in Grenoble. And little by little there were things a little different, for us it was a little the continuity of Funk, but we realized only a little later that it was the first House tracks, we were teenagers, we didn't understand properly the music yet :-) And that's how I started to listen to electronic music. And some time later there were the first techno tracks coming from Detroit, and I liked it immediately, this new energy, it was incredible for us at that time.
Why did you choose to pursue house and techno over other genres of electronic music?
— It is undoubtedly those in which I feel most at ease, those which speak to me most, I like the groove, the energy... But besides that, and as I said in a previous answer, I like more melodic and softer things, like for example the track 'Shadows' that I made in collaboration with my friend Yannick Baudino and that was released on the Summer Sampler of All Day I Dream this year.
Let's talk about your label Diversions. How's that all going? Are there any other projects upcoming that you're able to share with us?
— Yes it's going well with our label, we are quite happy. We are happy because we release different things, as well melodic, as more techno, groovy... This is what we wanted to do since the beginning, and it reflects what we like with Nicolas Masseyeff. For the moment we are only planning an EP of remixes of 'Connivence', track from the first release of the label in 2016. It's a track from Nicolas and me, but still a bit early to tell you who all the remixers are. There will certainly be a new EP from Nicolas as well. But we are open and always listening to demos for the future...
How do you and Nicolas tend to split your roles when it comes to the label management?
— There is not really a defined role, even if it is Nico who most often checks the demos first, and either he doesn't like them and so doesn't let me follow, or he has a doubt and tells me to listen, or he likes them and then decides together. But we always have to agree, even if sometimes one tries to convince the other :-)
We've been friends for over 20 years, so it's pretty easy to work together.
We're approaching the end of 2021. What have been some of the biggest highlights?
— This year again was a bit special, with the pandemic. But to be positive, I would say the remix I did for Joseph Capriati, the track on All Day I Dream, and my new single Fate.
Looking forwards, do you have any goals or objectives you would like to achieve next year?
— My priority is to finish my new album, I've been working on it for a while, but I had a lot of remix requests, and it took me a little while, so I still need some time to finish it.
Finally, do you have any other projects coming up soon that you'd like to share with us?
— There's the release this month of a special remix I did for a French pop-electronic singer called Delaurentis.
Then there is another of my remixes of an old track by my friend Popof, 'Serenity', which will be released on his Form Music label in January. Then the remixes of 'Connivence' on Diversions. But other projects can happen during the year :)