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XLII

ウクライナ生まれ、UK育ち。齢11歳よりMCの経験を積み、オリジナル・トラックの制作を始めたのは実に13歳という若さ。2004年からは拠点を日本に移して活動中。ヒップホップを基本としながら異ジャンルとの融合も難なくこなすトラック・メイカー、MC、DJ、サウンドエンジニアとして幅広い才能を見せつけている。

日本に移して以降、ASA (Jar-Beat Records)、Broken Haze(Insector Labo)、山仁da sportsman(Loop Junction)など数多くのアーティストとステージパフォーマンスを行ない、注目を浴びる。2006年にレーベル、FUBAR Recordingsを立ち上げ、2007年には東京・名古屋・仙台・関西をライブ巡業する。また、プロダクションからMCまで多彩な才能を遺憾なく発揮した“TIME SLIP EP” が満を持して2008年発表。その他にもヨーロッパで好評を博した人気D&BデュオPentagon&Ethixとの共同制作EP“White Label”など、MC、プロデューサー、エンジニアとして数多くの作品に参加している。
その後も新進気鋭のレーベルRaid Systemから“Ego Friendly”(アナログ、CD:2009年)がリリースされ、新作をひっさげた「EGO FRIENDLY ツアー」では東京・大阪・長野の他にもヨーロッパの都市を巡業。
2010年にはSlugabed、Alex B、Kidkanevil、8Bitch、等の注目アーティストと共に参加したUK発のフリー・コンピレーション“Oscillations”が、5万件以上のダウンロードを記録!現在、月1のペースでBroken Hazeと共に参加している“Raid System Radio”(Ustream)や“Rhythm Incursions”(ポッドキャストラジオ)がライブ/ダウンロード配信され、類まれなMIXセンスを見せつけている。同年秋、SeclusiasisのBD1982とのコラボレート曲を無料配信し、話題を呼ぶ。第2弾としてRamb Campのリミックス曲が今年2月に無料配信されている。
3月11日の震災後、イギリス出身ジャーナリストのローレン フィントーニ、Broken Haze, DJ Audaceらと共にチャリティーアルバム“Nihon Kizuna“をリリース。世界中のアーティストに参加を呼びかけたこの企画は、Kode 9, Kuedo, Rudi Zygadlo, Broken Haze, Circulations Records, All City Records, Ninja Tune, Kid Kanevil, Om Unit, Paul White, One Handed Music, BD1982, Mux Mool, Ernest Gonzales, Jay Scarlett, Elliott Yorke (Royalty), Kan Sano, Onraといったアーティスト、レーベルから計84曲の提供を受けた。現時点で300万円以上の寄付を集め、日本赤十字社へ届けている。

2011年夏、満を持してヨーロッパツアーを敢行。Kanye West、The Chemical Brothers、James Blake、Katy BなどがヘッドラインをつとめたイギリスのBig Chill Festivalへの参加を始め、ウクライナでのグラフィティ大会ファイナルにスペシャルゲストとして出演、更に各国でラジオ、ライブなどを数多くこなした。現在もBBC 1Xtra, Rince FM, といった人気ラジオ番組にてNinja TuneのStarkeyや昨年話題をさらったKutmahが彼の曲をプッシュ。また、Diploの話題レーベルMad Decentもブログで絶賛するなど、その評価は国内外で高い。今後は、Reso、Virus Syndicate、Kotchy、Starkeyなどが所属するロンドンのレーベル、Civil Musicから年内にリミックスが期待されている。また、その他のレーベルのコンピレーションにも多数参加予定。
自身の楽曲並みに入り組んだ複雑なライブパフォーマンスでも定評があるXLII。自他を問わず、幅広い楽曲を使いながら、ひとつのメロディーにつなぎ合わせていく。差し挟む激ヤバのサンプルに加え、リアルタイムで行われるアドリブのボーカルパフォーマンス、ルーピングが見もの。ジャンルはレイドバックなhip-hopから electro-house, UK Grime、 dubstep,更には日本歌謡曲までもが範疇という規格外のライブは必見!

XLII is the alias of one of the most interesting artists to emerge out of the booming Tokyo bass music scene in the last couple of years….
Born in Ukraine, in the turbulent years leading to the Soviet Union’s collapse and then making a swift escape to the UK at the age of 10, XLII’s mind is a messy mash of poor and rich, dark and funny, mellow and aggressive. Going from being a snotty barefoot kid smoking cigarette butts in the mud & snatching necklaces off junkies in Ukraine’s smoggiest industrial estate, to staring at sheep through a classroom window in picturesque Devon countryside, to Oxford, then London and at age 21, settling in Tokyo did funny things to XLII’s mind. All of this fully reflects in his music. It’s bound to, since he’s been doing it since age 11.
XLII sound is aggressive and it’s in your face, but it’s also playful, witty, melodic with a pinch of humour thrown in for a good measure. Being a die hard hip-hop fan made XLII “intolerant” of any other genres of music, but strangely XLII mainly makes “the other” genres of music with a shameless hip-hop attitude. XLII’s dubstep might remind you of KRS and XLII’s hip-hop might make you think of Ed Rush and Optical. Merging genres beyond all recognition, sampling, synthesis, vocal edits, massive beats and brain melting basslines is what XLII is about. Question is though, does it work? We think it does. And we hope you agree.

Since moving to Tokyo in 2004 and featuring on a couple of dozen releases, XLII has finally dropped his first 12”, “Time Slip EP” in 2008, with a moody cinematic video for the track “Deserted”, which has now become a cult classic among Japanese abstract fans. In 2009 he released his second EP and his first album, “Ego Friendly” on Tokyo based Raid System label and toured Japan and Europe to promote it. XLII has been gigging constantly for the last 6-7 years and has become one of the most recognisable figures in Tokyo music scene. In 2010 XLII featured in the Oscillations Compilation alongside heavyweights like Slugabed (Ninja Tune / Planet Mu), Alex B, Kidkanievel, Mr Beatnick just to name a few. In May 2010 XLII and Raid System label mate Broken Haze started doing a podcast for the London based Rhythm Incursions, quickly garnering a reputation as one of the best cross genre bass music podcasts on the internet and gathering thousands of regular subscribers. In October 2010 XLII has collaborated with Seclusiasis’ BD1982 on a bootleg version of Dub Gabriel & MC Zulu’s “No Lies”, which was quickly and enthusiastically endorsed by both artists. 2010/11 saw XLII gigging constantly throughout Japan, but he was stopped short in his tracks by the horrible events of March 11 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster. Luckily fellow Rhythm Incursionist Laurent Fintoni happened to be in Tokyo and together with Broken Haze and DJ Audace, by March 18 they have put together and released one of the most impressive charity compilations to date and without a doubt the best comp of 2011: “Nihon Kizuna”. 50 tracks tracks from people like Kode 9, Kuedo, Rudi Zygadlo, Broken Haze, Circulations Records, All City Records, Ninja Tune, Kid Kanevil, Om Unit, Paul White, One Handed Music, BD1982, Mux Mool, Ernest Gonzales, Jay Scarlett, Elliott Yorke (Royalty), Kan Sano, Onra and many more. The compilation sold more than $30,000 in the first month, stayed at #1 in Electronic Charts for 3 weeks, reached #11 in iTunes main charts beating Lady Gaga for a day and was featured in most major printed and online magazines and supported by thousands of fans from around the globe. All proceeds went to Japan Red Cross.
These days XLII is getting the recognition he deserves. In May 2011 his music was played on both Rinse FM and BBC 1xtra, was picked up by Starkey for a web magazine feature and was also featured on Mad Decent’s blog. He was also picked to judge at the annual Laptop Battle Tokyo alongside label mate Broken Haze and fellow Raid System Radio (monthly Ustream radio show) regular BD1982. In July and August XLII toured around Europe, doing a couple of dozen gigs and radio appearances, most notably as a secret guest Ukraine’s first national graffiti finals, live FM radio in France and NTS Radio & The Big Chill festival in the UK, other acts spanning names like Kanye West, The Chemical Brothers and dozens more. XLII’s shows are as intricate as his music. It’s a seamless mash of his own music and music by other artists, peppered with mental sample drops, realtime vocal adlibs, sampling and looping, acapella edits and beat mashing. Going from laid back hip-hop to electro-house, to UK Grime and dubstep, all the way up into juke territory and back into glitch-hop and with sporadic Japanese folk edits and the likes. It’s a must see. Please check his soundcloud (http://soundcloud.com/xlii) for his latest sound (and free bootleg downloads) and look out for new releases coming on a good label near you.

[LINKS]
XLII Site: http://www.fubar-rec.com/
XLII My Space: http://www.myspace.com/xlii42
XLII Soundcloud: http://soundcloud.com/xlii
XLII Twitter: https://twitter.com/XLIImusic
XLII Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/XLII/50159273759
XLII Last.fm: http://www.last.fm/music/XLII

Latest tracks by XLII

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