Just when Linkin Park announces the release of their new album Living Thing for June 2012, another band is causing a stir on the Rock/Rap scene. Xtatic Line, from the west coast of Florida, gave us details of their new EP RE;Dawn and their views on being dubbed ‘the new Linkin Park’.
MadlyJuicy: Details of your new EP RE;Dawn were released only a couple of days ago, what has the reaction been like so far and what can we expect from the EP musically?
Xtatic Line: It’s been a crazy past couple of weeks so far. The support shown to the production, not only by the fans but also by the media, has been downright incredible and I’m truly appreciative of that. Well, the new EP consists of five re-imagined versions of tracks that appeared on the demo. The goal was to create and deliver a more energetic and vivid experience and I think I was able to accomplish that with this record. It also serves as a good indication of the direction I’m heading in with future productions. I had a lot of fun working on this project and I truly hope the fans enjoy it as much as I did putting it together.
MJ: You are the Producer and Vocalist. Is there anyone else involved with the Xtatic Line project?
XL: No one else, just me and my laptop. Everything you hear on every Xtatic Line song was composed, recorded and produced by me. I play the guitar and piano so I thought I could pull it off and I think it worked out pretty well.
MJ: Is it nice to be compared to Linkin Park or does it add extra pressure?
XL: It’s an honor really. I’m very proud of being mentioned alongside Linkin Park when people talk about Rap/Rock. When it’s all said and done, I want Xtatic Line to be remembered as one of the biggest acts that represented the genre. As far as pressure goes, I don’t do music to live up to others standards. I don’t make music and then go compare it to someone else’s work to determine if it’s good or not. I don’t put that kind of pressure on me because I don’t believe in that. So being compared to LP is fine due to the fact that I’m not trying to fill their shoes or live up to their name. I work on what I think would be interesting to try and create, and as long as I keep doing that, I’ll feel no exterior pressure.
MJ: Is Mike Shinoda someone you look up to and do you think you two have similar styles lyrically?
XL: Definitely. He was a big inspiration growing up and one of the biggest reasons I got into the production side of things. I don’t know if I would say we have similar writing styles due to the fact that Mike and I have gone in different directions over the years. Maybe at some point we had similar styles but I don’t think we do at this particular moment.
MJ: Often the ‘Nu Metal’ tag is slapped on aggressive Rock/Rap bands, do you put yourself in that category or do you see yourself as more experimental with your sound?
XL: I think any type of label is toxic to an artist or creative mind, if they let it define them that is. Of course, musically, you have to somehow categorize yourself and that’s fine as long as you don’t let it become a cage. I don’t really want a tag slapped over Xtatic Line, the project is what it is and will always be a product of how I’m feeling creatively.
MJ: You have over 20, 000 likes on your Facebook page and over 12, 000 followers on Twitter; do you find social media is a good way to connect with your fans?
XL: No doubt, no doubt. It’s such a powerful tool nowadays. It’s pretty much the reason why Xtatic Line blew up like it did in such a short period of time. I launched and presented the project online and it just spread like wildfire. It was truly unbelievable. It’s also because of that interaction with the fans that I’m releasing Re;Dawn. I do listen and look at what people are saying or requesting. I truly value my fans and what they have to say.
MJ: The biggest influence on your life?
XL: My parents. I know that is kind of cliché and perhaps corny to some but it’s the honest truth. It’s hard not to be influenced by people who have always been there for you regardless of whatever the situation may be and truly love and care for you unconditionally.
MJ: Where do you see Xtatic Line in 10 years?
XL: I hope that by then I would be able to establish Xtatic Line as a household name and had built something special enough to be remembered for a long time.
MJ: Which artists/bands currently on the scene would you love to work with?
XL: Probably Adele. I think she’s a breath of fresh air in the industry and she’s extremely talented.
MJ: If you could give one piece of advice to any other band trying to break into the music industry what would it be?
XL: Act on your ideas and make them happen. I’ve met so many peoples who have great ideas but they never get around to making them a reality. If you are passionate about something, take action.