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Drexciya was an electronic music band from Detroit, Michigan. The late James Stinson was the only officially identified member of Drexciya, but it was considered an open secret that he had a partner, Gerald Donald.
The majority of Drexciya’s releases were in the style of harsh, dancefloor oriented Electro, punctuated with elements of retro, 1980s Detroit Techno, with occasional excursions into the Ambient and Industrial genres. Tracks are mostly centered around the TR-808 drum machine, with bass, melodies, and synth textures ebbing and flowing in time. Anecdotes suggest that Stinson and Donald recorded tracks while playing the instruments live, making use of analog equipment and sequencing methods.
Drexciya combined a faceless, underground, anti-mainstream media stance with mythological, sci-fi narratives, to help heighten the dramatic effect of their music. In this respect they were similar to artists within and close to the Detroit collective Underground Resistance.
Their name referred to a myth comparable to Plato’s myth of Atlantis, which the group revealed in the sleeve notes to their 1997 album “The Quest”. “Drexciya” was an underwater country populated by the unborn children of pregnant African women thrown off of slave ships that had adapted to breathe underwater in their mother’s wombs.
Reports of Drexciya’s disbanding in 1997 were contradicted two years later when a new Drexciya track appeared on the Underground Resistance compilation Interstellar Fugitives, followed by three more Drexciya albums. It appears that these were the solo work of Stinson. Both he and Gerald Donald continued to be prolific in their respective side projects.