Flashing back to 1997
written by Baze Djunkiiii
It was only back then when Xenia Beliayeva finally kickstarted her career as a club DJ at the opening night of Karlsruhes Centre For Art and Media Technology (ZKM). Opening a night that featured the french Techno pioneer Laurent Garnier and electronic music legends Kraftwerk live on stage after only a few years being around DJ'ing at art events and similar occasions.
Many things have happened since these early days, when she was freelancing for labels like Playhouse, Klang Elektronik or Mute Records and working for the highly acclaimed Ladomat for many of years where she took care of various business issues including the A&R department. Not to forget managing her own label Lone Records in conjunction with Formic Distribution and the Ladomat 2000-offspring Danced Records which is another part of Xenia Beliayeva's journey.
All these things have taken her from the art / exhibition circuits to clubs, raves and festivals allover the world. Continously evolving to the fully established, highly appreciated and award-winning DJ / vocalist Xenia Beliayeva is now, solo and in several collaborational projects that she's taken part in throughout the years.
With 12“ releases under her belt put on the circuit via imprints like Datapunk, Different, Systematic Recordings and others plus a full-length album debut („Ever Since“) on Shitkatapult there's no wondering why Xenia Beliayeva has been caught collecting miles and miles, traveling to places like Spain, France, Italy or paving her way to faraway countries like Ukraine, Australia, Russia or Brazil where she built a firm, enthusiastic fan base and, in the Brazilian district of Mato Grosso, won the Factoide Award for the Best Live Performance two times in a row.
And live means live as Xenia Beliayeva has more to offer than just playing records. Her performance range has evolved from the regular DJ-set to DJ-/live amalgamations in which the Moscow-born artist is voicing special edits of her own productions and now reached the stage of full on live concerts, fronting the stage with a unique vocalist style and pure presence whilst her long-time partner André Winter is taking care of technical aspects.
This ability as such has once again increased the number of fans and followers attending XenBel shows allover the place and tuning in to her Radio Xenbel show which is broadcasted on several stations and in various cities she's playing, giving her an extra slot of air time plus a new and quite innovative way to interact directly with her ever-growing fanbase. And reactions show, that they do feel the meaning of each song even though they might not get the words as hit-singles like „Momentan“ or the more recent „Dumpfe Träume“ are performed and broadcasted worldwide in their orginal form - with lyrics sung in German.
This surely is another important point that singles out Xenia Beliayeva's position as „artiste extraordinaire“. She is a multi-lingual butterfly serving special flavours amongst mostly instrumental or at least monolingual competitors. Plus: her devotees are not only hailing from electronic club land but feeling at home in the darker, kind of Goth-flavored areas as well as in Synth- and Non-Mainstream Pop. Areas Xenia Beliayeva is not afraid of to explore as not only her videos but also different remix works, e.g. for the Techno vs. EBM-flavored Nitzer/McCarthy project, do prove.
These devotees will be pleased for sure by Xenia Beliayeva's new album in the making, an electronic journey named „Riss“ after the spontaneous working title of the very first demo track created for the album. The tracks name was changed to protect the innocent, the German word „Riss“ (engl: fissure, crack, fracture, jag, disruption) was here to stay, ready to break down stylistic borders and artificial walls between naturally connected scenes.