FAULT Magazine interviews XO



You’ve first started working on music from your home made studio. What drove you towards it and how did you get it all off the ground?

Initially, I think it was just my enthusiasm for music in general at the time. I was listening to a lot of UK Bass music, some early Dubstep stuff and even Grime, but I’d like to think an eclectic taste is something I’ve always possessed. I loved the idea making different styles of music and one day, somehow stumbled across a copy of FL Studio, it was from there that I started working on ideas and beats.

With XO, it all started with me uploading a track to SoundCloud, and from there I guess you could say things have snowballed, more than I ever imagined. But even then, there wasn’t really a set structure or a unique sound to the project, so that’s been something I’ve worked hard on, especially over the past year.


Were you spurred on by the rising popularity of DIY producers?

Without a doubt. What intrigued me the most was the fact that kids my age were making amazing music from their bedrooms – it was something I definitely wanted to get in on.


You hate being described as a house producer. How would you call yourself instead? 

Ha yeah, well there’s no doubt that house music influences me and my music, but I don’t want it to define the project by any stretch. The main tracks I’ve pushed over the past year or so have elements of lots of other styles and genres too, so I guess it’s a combination of these which enable me to get my “sound”.

As for labelling myself, I have no idea to be honest, all I know is that I make electronic music, and it’s usually whatever I feel is right at the time. I think once the new material is fully out there, there’ll definitely be a clearer depiction in people’s minds as to what I’m truly about.


You’ve done a lot of music in the past with RobLaw and it was all quite remote, with him being in Georgia and you in the UK. How did you make it all work? 

Facebook. Plain and simple. What’s funnier is that we haven’t even Skyped, like ever. I guess for some collaborating artists, things just seem to “click” and I can be sure when I say it did with us, we’re very proud of what we create together.


Tell me about your upcoming release, The Ethereal Experience. What do you want people to make of it? 

I just want them to understand the journey I’ve taken as a producer/songwriter, especially now that I’m completely comfortable in my own musical skin. I also believe I have a clear, distinctive sound now which I’ve worked really hard on over the past year. T.E.E. is without doubt my best work to date and I just hope people appreciate the creativity, style and theme throughout the body of work – I’m really excited to get it out there in its entirety!


You’ve gained an incredible following of music lovers that include Annie Mac, Huw Stephens, Diplo, not to mention support from platforms like Pitchfork and Mixmag. What does that mean to an up and coming artist? Have you changed any of your approaches after gaining the support that you needed to move forward with your music?

It means a hell of a lot, of course. To know that what I’m doing from my home “studio” is gaining support from all the names you’ve just mentioned is surreal at times to be honest, it’s so good to know the project and the music that comes with it are being recognised.

I don’t think I’ve changed my approach at all. Yes, I think about things like keeping my music cohesive a little bit more now and being consistent with my output, but I never go in with a set plan. I’ve found that letting things happen naturally is always the best way, if you have your heart set on something from the get go and it doesn’t materialise for whatever reason, you’re just going to be left disappointed. But that doesn’t mean to say I don’t have expectations and goals, you’ve just got to take everything with a pinch of salt I guess.

I’ll just continue to make music I enjoy creating and listening to, if other people like it, then great! If not, I’m not gonna be in bits about it, people have preferences and opinions. As long as you’re staying true to yourself, that’s all that matters.


What’s next for you? Do you have any exciting plans for summer 2015? Any festivals coming up? 

I’ll just be working on a bunch of new material as always, maybe even towards releases further down the line, although nothing’s set in stone just yet. As for live dates/festivals and things, they’ll be announced as and when via my social media pages. So keep an eye out!


What’s your FAULT? (Achilles heel/ pet peeve)

I have a really short temper.


Words: Adina Ilie