Fresh off her wave of success in the U.K., British singer, songwriter, and producer, Nia Archives, is leading a renaissance of the jungle and drum-and-bass scene. This revival, which she has passionately propelled in the U.K., is now surging across the Atlantic.
Set to electrify Atlanta with her 'Up Ya Archives' tour, Nia is gearing up for her maiden performance in the city at The Loft on October 21. While Nia's experiences in the U.S. aren’t new, Atlanta will be a first for her.
“I've toured the States, but never Atlanta. Known for its rap, I'm intrigued to discover its underground dance vibe,” she shared. Originating in the U.K. during the early 1990s, jungle, recognized for its rapid tempo, breakbeats, and profound bass, became iconic through underground raves and rogue radio broadcasts.
Over time, as drum-and-bass and electronic dance music (EDM) burgeoned, jungle's charm seemed to fade into history. But not for Nia Archives.
Roots in West Yorkshire Rave
Raised in West Yorkshire, she was introduced to the magic of British dance music early on.
With her family running a pirate radio station, music was not just entertainment; it was tradition. As she matured, her passion led her to Manchester, diving deeper into the northern rave culture. Harnessing the power of digital platforms like YouTube, she began her self-taught journey into music production.
Though jungle may not dominate U.S. charts yet, Nia is optimistic. “The youth are hearing it anew, while older fans reminisce. It's a blend of fresh enthusiasm and nostalgia,” she observed. Nia's commitment isn't just about the music; it’s about inclusivity.
She is determined to carve safer and more welcoming spaces in the rave scene, especially for women. This dedication culminated in her organizing the "Bad Gyalz" rave in London, emphasizing female and non-binary talent on the decks.
“It’s heartwarming to see young women at my gigs. My goal is to nurture this inclusive environment further, to make raves a haven for all, especially for women and the LGBTQ+ community,” she expressed. But if there's one surreal chapter in her journey, it’s the opening act for Beyoncé's "Renaissance" tour in London.
A moment she described as "perhaps the wildest in my life." The venue, the massive Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, witnessed 62,000 souls grooving to jungle and drum-and-bass, many experiencing it for the first time. Her global performances, spanning festivals like Glastonbury, Primavera Sound, and Coachella, accentuate her rapid ascent.
“It’s surreal. I make music for myself, and realizing others vibe with it too is incredible,” she confessed. With more collaborations on the horizon and a fresh album in the works, Nia Archives is on a mission: elevate jungle to global prominence.
CONCERT PREVIEW: Nia Archives - 8 p.m. Oct. 21. Tickets at $25; $22.50 if booked in advance. The Loft, 1374 W. Peachtree St., Atlanta.