I interviewed XP8 on Friday August 8th, 2008 at Club Anything in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Photography by Michelle Russo and Jesse
M: Marko Ressurection
MV Marko Visconti
Chain D.L.K.: Alright, obviously this is for whoever wants to answer this, WithXP8, first of all, what year did you officially form and how did youguys all meet? Was it like a band that was never suppose to happen?
XP8: M: Ok, not exactly sure what you mean by “officially”, but lets say thatin the beginning there was a band called “Retena” that collapsed due toterrorism. And it was me and Paul our singer and we meet with Marco inthe year 2000. And we started making music and doing drugs and clubs anddoing whatever. We started misbehaving almost immediately and that ledto the formation of a group of songs.We officially formed when we firstplayed that was the year 2001, June 23.
Chain D.L.K.: With name XP8, first of all I’m going to ask a two part question.Where did the concept of XP8 come from and did you ever see it goinguniversal like “Hail to the Swaztika”? We believe your name is universaland all around the world. We have seen the name all over , I’ve seenstickers on tollbooths all over the place.
XP8: M: Oh yeah?
MV: Oh yeah?
Chain D.L.K.: Most definately!
XP8: MV: We are going for world domination. We are from Rome, we don’t thinkwe will achieve it just by our name. We try to achieve world dominationby playing as much music possible in as many places.
Chain D.L.K.: So who is going to tell me where the name XP8 came from?
XP8: M: XP8 came from the name of a club night that was run in Rome awhileago. That was an electro night and was in a night place. The partypeople caught on to the name and the feel.
MV: Hail to the people in Rome that actually know that is was theirclub, but obviously it is not there anymore.
M: No it is not.
MV: It is a memorial now.
MV: It was a name from over 10 years ago.
Chain D.L.K.: With “The Art of Revenge”, could you say that whole concept is basedon personal experience for your writing of your lyrics?
XP8: M: To be honest, I believe that songs have to start from personalopinion or personal experience. There are many songs that started as “Iwas angry at someone…” I think that songs at a certain point lyricwise, have to not become my diary. That have to be something that isequal and not the old, universal, that everyone can and should relateto the songs. I’ve been told by many people that are also about myexperiences.
Chain D.L.K.: That we can all relate to it?
XP8: M & MV: Yes, exactly.
Chain D.L.K.: M: This just a personal introduction. I told Erica from Unter Nullthis, because it also happened with her track, “Sick Fuck” beingplayed constantly. II will tell you as far as favourite bands for him,my ex-boyfriend played “Das Licht ” 90 times as if it was on a looptape. My roommate had to brush his teeth, take a shit and go to work andlisten to XP8 all the time due to my ex- boyfiend constantly playingyour band.
XP8: (Everyone in unison in XP8): Oh wow!
Chain D.L.K.: And Erica from Uniter Null said, “Oh my God, if you can do that insix months, back to back and never play nothing else for a year, wow!”So I’m a trooper, you gotta give me and my roomate credit for dealingwith that from my ex boy-fiend.l My roomate couldn’t be here tonight,but he said “Tell the guys I love their songs” , but wow, 90 times onrepeat like a loop tape ever single day is what were subjected to, isn’tthat a bit obsessive?
XP8: (Everone in unison in XP8) Yeah, that is alot!
Chain D.L.K.: What is your impression of the Chicago/Milwaukee area. From what Iunderstand, this is your first time here? How does it compare to theEuropean ebm scene?
XP8: MV: Well we are on tour with great people, which is something of a funtrip. The thing is, in the US we found that even small towns, the smallclubs spend money into their sound system for their clubs. Where as inEurope, most of the clubs are more avant/decadent. People wise, it ismuch better here. I remember my first tour, with VNV Nation, we playedChicago, Detroit, New Orleans, Minneapolis.Generally, the people in theUnited States are much more louder and much more there for you.
M: I’m not saying that in Europe people don’t like the music. Weactually have much bigger crowds in Europe and we are more known there.
Chain D.L.K.: Don’t you DJ as well?
XP8: MV: Yes I do.
M: We all do.
Chain D.L.K.: I have always seen you a big band in the ebm/noise circuit as far asfestivals like “Wave Treffen” Isn’t it like a culture shock to be herewhen you played before 1000’s of people compared to our much smalleraudience?
XP8: M & MV: No expect it because you know that things are different. We areparty people, we actually like out music, so if we can get a reactionfrom it, we are happy, even if its 20 people or 2000.
E: Also, I played Treffen a couple of times and other kinds offestivals. You don’t expect that all the time. There are 20,000 people,that didn’t come to see just you. They are going to see the band onstage. I love playing at the festivals, i’ts a great time. Marko and Iactually met for the first time at Treffen last year. In Europe is likelast year we had the large audience and but a couple experiences we werein Switzerland and where it was like, I don’t know, about seven peoplewere there.
Chain D.L.K.: Would you say that Magick is very central network/framework in yourmusic?
XP8: M: No Me?
MV: I would say yes
Chain D.L.K.: I would say yes too for sure, I see where it fits you.
XP8: MV: We have very different opinions on the matter. . What ever works for you, and if you are happy and have awonderful life. It works for him, what ever works for me. If you canfind someone that lives by their beliefs and can do their job and nottry push their beliefs on anyone then everything is fine.
Chain D.L.K.: What would you say are each of your current musical influences?
XP8: M: An influence in my music now is alot of uppers.
Chain D.L.K.: If you had to give a band, who would you say?
XP8: M: The thing is, I listen to lots of ebm music, but then I try to makemusic better than what we’ve done. I don’t believe in putting one bandagainst another.
Chain D.L.K.: Or painting yourself in one corner, am I right?
XP8: M:: I put myself against myself.
MV :There is a techno producer in Germany that is part of the Germantechno scene. I really, really like what they are doing.
M & MV :This is why we don’t sound like any other band anymore. I thinkwe started to be very selective like some bands. do. We don’t sound likeanyone else just becuase we have so many different influences ourselvesthat all come out.
Chain D.L.K.: Would your say that is your contribution to the scene?
XP8: MV: I don’t believe in the “scene”.
M: They believe in you though.
MV: I mean that is very good.
M: That is a compliment from us to you.
M: I just think that maybe they are taking too far and if I rememberwhen I was a kid, 15 in the 90’s, there was much less boundries.
Chain D.L.K.: Not so much catagorization back then either, am I right?
XP8: MV: Exactly, I listened to goth ,ebm the early trancy dance music wascoming, like ebm. That was cool because you could have much wider ideas.Now everyone is struggling to do like the better ebm night, the gothnight, that is stupid, for me. I think that maybe we are doing somethingin with the music. I think we are pushing the boundries to the music,more elements outside it.
Chain D.L.K.: You and “Project Pitchfork”, the forerunners in the electro sceneto be really honest. The ” scene” views you as a staple band -(universal all over the world) I don’t know if you are well aware of that.Your name is like a “buzz” word, seriously, it is all over the States,all the countries, universal all over the world. Welcome to being theforerunners of a different genre…
XP8: MV: We come from Europe and Europe is really different kind of societywhen it comes to bands and everything and we are kind still like the newkids on the block there. We are getting better, I think our music isgetting better. I really don’t see us as big as a band like “Pitchfork”.When it comes to Germans, it such that is you are not there. We arestill on the side, we will always be the Italian guys.
Chain D.L.K.: I’ve seen alot of the younger generation sporting XP8 tatoos, are youaware of this?
Chain D.L.K.: Oh they are hardcore, 14 year olds are sporting your symbol… Do you feel like your are portraying a message to the masses? And ifso, what do you say to everyone?
XP8: M: I would think we have unique music. I think our type of music isstill open to scrutiny and interpertation. There are a few song whichare a bit more faithful with a political view of the world that webelieve in. There are sometimes where you have to yell. But alot ofthings we try to write and not be too specific or to the point. You haveto imagine that we are writing in a language than is not ours. So wealways have a tendancy of keeping it not too specific because I preferpeople to get their own ideas. I don’t have to sell to anyone that Ibelieve in free speech and whatever. I don’t have to sell to people thefact that they have to wake up and do something in their life. If theydon’t believe it themselves, it is pointless for me to say it. Thosekind of messages you can not really put into people. You just think thatlife is doing things in the way you believe it should be done and maybemake it your life is a message, but not yourself.
MV: Precisely, we really are our songs. Whatever we wrote this is what weare. I think we are not that horrible. Maybe that is our message. Onecan be a white collar type of person, but still be a person of moralsand ethics.
Chain D.L.K.: Kind of an abstract question, the elements that surround you, thehistory of Rome. Would you say that knowledge, that power, that historyhelps you to write. You come from a very dark history in Rome so I waswondering if that inspired your music in some sort of unique way andfashion ?
XP8: M: Being Roman, is something that is in you. When you travel everyday byscooter through Rome, and you pass by ancient ruins and stuff, it kindsof forms you in a way that keeps your perspective not on history itself,but facts. It gives you an idea that you are very small.
Chain D.L.K.: That could be like walking on the stars in Hollywood on the way to aclub, perhaps like the known history in Hollywood?
XP8: E: I don’t know man, you walk down the street in Hollywood and go to aclub and thinking less about the stars and more like about the crackaddicts picking at their shoes.
Chain D.L.K.: Oh you are from LA, I forgot. I would consider you guyslucky to have history and architecture like that. We don’t have anythinglike that! With your album now, “The Art Of Revenge”, would you say you arereaching higher progression and direction with this most recent music?Is it getting better? Is your band more tighter and firmer than before?
XP8: I think we made a few very conscious decisions with the this lastalbum in order to step forward to get the sound more focused. We wantedto have a more polished sound and more of an identity. We never wantedto be the next ebm band, we wanted to be a band!
Chain D.L.K.: It’s like Bauhaus never wanted to be a band and later they came areal solid band, perhaps something to that effect?
XP8: MV: Something like that.
M: I think the first two albums there is alot of that in there. Icertainly don’t feel that way about the “Art of Revenge” as a listener.The sound has changed and we have became more developed.
Chain D.L.K.: What is the concept behind the ” Das Licht?” “Where did that conceptfor the song come from?
XP8: M: Well ask Paul, Paul wrote that song . I love the song, “somebody hasto switch the light.”
Chain D.L.K.: Alot of people thought, “oh maybe they say a light in the club and itwas pretty and then they wrote about it or a light bulb went off intheir head” perhaps something to that effect?
XP8: (Everyone in unison in XP8): Ah, don’t be ridiculous.
Chain D.L.K.: In conclusion, what future projects can we expect from XP8? Movies?Are you going to make any horror movies ?
XP8: M: We have a new album that is going to come out this autumn with allnew songs and a video. We have online a cover version of “What Time Is Love” by The KLF, and we did two versions of it… one is our mix, the other is the Everything Goes Cold mix, which is Eric’s band… Marco and Eric did it when Marco went to visit Eric in San Francisco last February, and eventually it might be also herald to more covers of THE KLF, again under the name of The Squidhead Liberation Front. Check it at www. everythinggoescold. com/wtil !!!
Visit XP8 on the web at:
[interviewed by Michelle Russo] [proofreading by Cindy Troy]