Born in Yorkshire in 1971 but transplanted to Belgium when he was only three, CJ Bolland received an early education in dance music; his parents ran a club in Antwerp, and his mother DJed there. He grew up listening to the synthesizer music of several eras — from Jean-Michel Jarre to Front 242 and the Neon Judgement — but began devoting most of his time to house and techno by the late '80s. Bolland began producing in 1988, when a drummer friend gave him access to the right gear, and his tracks were soon heard on several Belgian pirate radio stations. He then sent demos to several labels, and finally heard back from R&S Records.
CJ Bolland's first production for R&S, the Project's "Do That Dance," jump-started his career, and he soon saw releases from his projects Pulse, Space Opera (with the Advent's Cisco Ferreira), Cee-Jay, Ravesignal and Sonic Solution. His 1992 Ravesignal 3 EP (specifically, the track "Horsepower") made Bolland one of the hottest names in the new global dance community.
Bolland made his album debut soon after, with The 4th Sign. His 1993-94 schedule also included production work for Mundo Muzique, Dave Angel and Joey Beltram as well as remixing for Orbital, the Prodigy, Sven Väth, Westbam, Tori Amos and Baby Ford, among others. His second album Electronic Highway was released in 1995, after which Bolland signed a mammoth five-album deal with Internal Records. The first fruits of the contract, The Analogue Theatre, were released in late 1996 to critical praise and dance-chart success, thanks to the excitable single "Sugar Is Sweeter." ~ John Bush