IS XP8 “SHORT” FOR SOMETHING?
Finding a right name for a band is not the most easier of the tasks, I can assure you... anyway, when Marko proposed us to utilize XP8, the name from a venue Paul – our original singer - organised here in Rome a while back, we all thought it was just perfect. It is a short way of writing "expiate" and the dictionary says, "ex·pi·ate: To make amends or reparation for; atone: expiate one's sins by acts of penance."
In a way, that is what we do through our music and in particular by the live performance, which is for us at least a catharsis, a cleansing of our emotions, especially pity (self or otherwise) and fear, which Aristotle called an effect of tragic drama on its audience.
HOW DOES XP8 CREATE THEIR MUSIC?
We pride ourselves on considering XP8 as a collective effort, but this of course mean that we have a limited amount of time to spend together in the studio. We do meet a couple of days per week in the studio but then we work most of the time on our own, to create the backbones of the tracks that will later on be shaped in their final form. We create a concept each for ourselves, and then we bring those ideas together and we arrange the song together, finding the right feel and the right mood for it.
BANDS EITHER SOUND LIKE THEMSELVES OR (MOST) LIKE SOMEONE ELSE. XP8 JUST SEEMS TO SOUND LIKE XP8…HOW WAS THAT SOUND DEVELOPED?
To sound like XP8 has been a crucial point for us since day one, and it really seems like we got it. Of course, this can be detrimental at times, since to hit the next DJ chart you have to propose something that can be played on to the dancefloors, where the trendsetter mentality holds sway… that’s why it’s kinda difficult to see XP8 on any given chart. Anyway, the key to the XP8 soundscape is to be found among the really different influences of the three of us… from The Cure to Faithless, from Tool to Current 93 to Skinny Puppy to Icon Of Coil, from Vitalic to Underworld… we really do listen and enjoy a really wide spectrum of music. Mix this big background to our own musician’s sensibility and you’ll get the XP8 sound.
STILL, FROM TIME TO TIME, YOUR MUSIC GETS CLASSIFIED UNDER MANY CATEGORIES SUCH AS FUTUREPOP, EBM, AND SYNTHPOP. DO YOU THINK THESE CATEGORIES ACCURATELY DESCRIBE YOUR SOUND?
All these sub-sub-sub-categories come about for a number of reasons: either to pin down an elusive style or more often to differentiate a genre, and often this comes about from a need to “create” a niche in a market and subsequently create a movement or trend. What we do is “electronic music”. We’ll accept EBM as it’s been around for a long time, we were already around when people were trying to decide whether to call bands like Front 242 EBM or Cyber. Everybody needs labels, to define and differentiate, clarify. You run into problems when people disagree. EBM was a nice term that encompassed the early Front 242 moment and most bands were content to be included in that "gang". Things like Futurepop, Power Noise, Synthpop and the like reek of people trying to breathe new air into an aging genre as well as trying to detail the differences between an Apoptygma Berzerk, a Hocico and a VNV Nation.
CAN YOU REMIX ONE OF MY SONGS?
Please send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and include a link to the original song and the budget that you have available for the remix.
We currently do not "trade" remixes.
CAN I USE ONE OF YOUR SONGS ON A COMPILATION?
For all licensing, promotion and cooperation requests please contact us at email@example.com.
YOU RELEASED YOUR VERY FIRST CD THOUGH MP3.COM A FEW YEARS AGO. HOW MUCH HAS XP8 GROWN SINCE THAT TIME PERIOD OF YOUR LIVES? IN WHAT WAYS DO YOU THINK YOU HAVE CHANGED AS MUSICIANS?
We’ve tried to maintain the enthusiasm and energy we had right at the beginning. We’ve never followed “rules” as far as making music is concerned and we prefer to keep it that way. Experimenting is the best way to innovate. At the end of the day we make music because it is fun. We have still have a job to pay the rent, so to speak. As studio technicians we have improved and we can now produce music which is ready for the public.
XP8 LIVE… WHAT CAN WE EXPECT TO SEE FROM YOU ON STAGE?
It's very innovative really because Marco demonstrates improvised knitting techniques with electrified needles and Marko practices telepathy and tries to levitate empty beer bottles using his mind alone (but we are trying to incorporate a remote control helicopter in this set up). Audience interaction is encouraged and we tend to end each concert with a naked hug session with the crowd...
Well, it's an idea. Live we have Marco that mixes, arranges the computer sequencing and effects everything, while Marko sings, and dances, and shouts, and generally tries to look as interesting as possible. Live shows are definitely coming together now and we give off good energy and get the crowd dancing as much as possible. Live we expiate and we want the crowd to do the same.
We have worked for the past years on getting a show out there that gets people moving and doesn’t rely on cool visuals and a devastating light show. We’ve made enough progress now to be able to do that, so now we are starting to put together people who can work the visual side of things. We want everything we do be strong enough to stand up on its own. We now have people who can perform as a video artist and light technician. All we need is the funding to get it on the road. Whatever happens though, we have a show that with just the music and a fixed light we can make you move and enjoy.
WHEN WILL YOU COME TO MY CITY/AREA/COUNTRY TO PLAY A SHOW?
That is completely dependent on the bookers/promoters/club owners in your area. Please check the dates in the "live" section of this website to find out which gigs are 100% confirmed. If you want us to play in your area, make sure to annoy the fuck out of the people at your local clubs by telling them to book XP8 for a show. If they don't know that you want us to perform, then they won't book us!
CAN I BOOK YOU FOR A CONCERT/DJ GIG?
Yes, of course. Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and outline the following details: date, club/venue, city, country, other bands/DJs of the night, full name of the organizer and any other details that describe the event. You will hear back from our booking agent as soon as possible.
WHERE IS THE FASCINATION WITH ALL THINGS “CYBER” ROUTED?
We always liked the cyberpunk culture, even as kids… we loved the original cyberpunk idea of transcending the flesh, and so this world, thru the integration with the machine, the next state of evolution, the next vibration of the essence. We loved the works and philosophy of early cyberpunk and cyber “magick” thinkers, such as Genesis P-Orridge, William Burroghs and Brion Gysin, Coil, Grant Morrison, Robert Anton Wilson and of course William Gibson.
We still wish to transcend, but we are not sure the tech will be able to free us anymore.
Like most saviors, the tech has been subverted by those in power to forward their own agendas. The promise of the Net, the ability to free information, has been prostituted in order to refinance mortgages at a lower rate, to make money, to make our penis larger.
Sometimes we have hope. Today we live in the world of iPhones and constant wireless connection. As long as you stay in the cell network, you never have to disconnect. We wanted it. If it came with a cranial jack we would have sold any remaining part of our soul for it.
Anyway, we don't see that hunger today. Fashion, music, dance. These are all well and good, but they still live in the meat. Stationary, no transcendence at all.
Still, maybe there is hope.