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X-Press 2 have been at the vanguard of British electronic music for two decades now. Whether it’s as musicians, DJs or remixers, the London duo, aka Rocky and Diesel, share the same sense of musical discovery that first united them on the acid-house dance floors of Shoom and Spectrum and in the Balearic playgrounds of Ibiza.
The pair see strong parallels between those Balearic formative years and the irreverent eclecticism of today. "Our earliest influences were pre-house warehouse parties where you had rare groove, soul, jazz, go-go music - all different sorts of stuff being played", says Diesel. Rocky continues: "In Ibiza in the late 80s, we’d be dancing to Acid Trax, then a Rolling Stones record, or the Woodentops. And 20 years later there’s a bit of that going on again".
Currently working on their untitled forthcoming album, Rocky and Diesel have selected some interesting guest vocalists. "We always try and go for someone who’s not associated with dance music." For the new album, that means people like Rob Harvey, former frontman of Leeds alt-rockers the Music, who previously collaborated with X-Press 2 on 'Kill 100' and co-wrote a new track called 'The Blast'.
Another album track, 'This Is War,' features Hannah Scanlon of Brighton’s indie outfit Doll and the Kicks. "She’s got a really powerful voice and the song is fucking nuts," says Diesel. "What really appealed to us is the fact that it’s about war rather than throwing your hands in the air and loving everyone," says Rocky.
"We will never make a song that says; Take me higher," insists Diesel. "That’s just never gonna happen."
X-Press 2 will be playing at That Mixmag Thing at the Queen of Hoxton, London, Friday November 4.
X-Press 2's forthcoming album, 'The House Of X-Press 2' is out January 9, 2012 on Skint Records.
Mixmag MOTW Tracklisting
1 X-Press 2 - dark Matar
2 Gary Beck - Funk Up High
3 Julien Chaptal - Apple Woodo
4 Trick Melody - Shock Your Head
5 Giorgio Roma - Across The Eastside
6 Energy 52 - Cafe Del Mar
7 X-Press 2 and Tim Deluxe - Lost The Feelin'
8 Lil Louis - The Conversation
9 Egbert - Groovegg
10 X-Press 2 feat. Doll - This Is War. [KiNK Remix]
11 DJ Wild - Lick It
12 Dualton - The Love Song
Forthcoming X-PRESS 2 shows
22 Oct D2Arts Salamanca Spain
29 Oct Discodome Moscow
04 Nov That Mixmag Thing, London
18 Nov Avalon Singapore