Questions asked by Jon Wilde, added to Rock Realms 29th November 2010.
We recently previewed new album "Blooden Diaries" from Danish group X Contract. The showcase picked up a load of hits, so we thought we'd find out what makes these guys so popular.
Hi Guys, thanks for taking a moment to answer these questions. Hope you are well?
X Contract: Very well, thank you! And you?
What’s the history behind the X Contract? How did the band form and what’s the background of the various members?
X Contract: It was started in 2007 by Dennis Pedersen, when he got the first ideas for the first songs. In the summer of 2009 he met Jon Brændsgaard Toft, a local producer, and they started recording the first demos. Then in the autumn they were joined by guitar player Lars Klit Nielsen, who started writing heavy riffs for most of the songs. Practicing for the first gig, the band tried several bass players until finally in March 2010, Casper Halkjær was chosen.
Who were the early influences?
X Contract: The band is inspired by rock, grunge and hard rock artists such as Linkin Park, Nirvana, Three Days Grace among others.
How has the Danish music scene helped or hindered you over the years?
X Contract: It’s hard to rise up as a rock band in Denmark, so we’ve focused more on the European market, which we’ve been more successful in doing.
Did you know what sort of sound the band was destined to have at the start, or has it developed a lot since you began?
X Contract: It has developed a lot over the years. We’ve moved from rock’n’roll to punk to more hard and heavy rock, especially when Lars joined the band.
How would you actually describe your sound?
X Contract: Well, all bands these times say, that they have their own sound, as do we, though we have our inspirations. Our sound is basically a combination of rock’n’roll, punk and heavy rock.
When did you start work on debut album “Blooden Diaries”, and was it hard work, pleasure or both to put the LP together?
X Contract: The ideas began in 2007, while the recordings started in 2009. It’s been a long, hard but also very educational and funny trip all the way through, and it is with great pleasure that we present the finished record.
How does the writing process in X Contract work? Talk us through the creation of a typical song...
X Contract: Some of the songs started with a few chords and words, while others were based on heavy riffs on the guitar or the bass, and then all the members come with various inputs. We don’t have a certain recipe we follow all the time.
How do you come up with your lyrical and musical writing ideas?
X Contract: Dennis had from the start an idea of a concept album, with all the songs sharing the same theme. Lots of the song lyrics came to Dennis in dreams, which he wrote down when he woke up.
Is there a story flowing through the album, or are the tracks all standalone?
X Contract: There is a story flowing through the album, yes, but the tracks are also listenable individually.
Do you do anything special or unusual in the studio to get your sound?
X Contract: We’ve experimented a lot with the sound in the studio and tried lots of different things. Usually Jon does something when he gets an idea and then it’s up to the rest of the band, if it’s alright.
What’s your favourite track on the LP, and is it the sound of the song or the memories behind it that make you love it?
Dennis answers: 'Turning Into Stone': There’s a special Muse-inspired sound that I love. It’s the only song on the record written by Lars, which makes it a special listening experience. Oh, and I loves the break in the middle of the song.
Casper answers: 'Hatedream': I love the song, the riff and the way it gets you up from the chair.
Lars answers: 'Hatedream': Much the same reasons and I love his guitar solo in the song.
Jon answers: 'Are You Ready': It’s the bluesiest song on the album!
How is the album doing so far in terms of reviews, airplay and sales?
X Contract: The album has received mixed reviews in the European press and got some airplay in a local Danish radio. The album has been set up for sale in various internet stores.
Do you enjoy the whole studio/creative experience, or do you prefer getting up on the live stage?
X Contract: We like playing live gigs, but the experience in the studio is invaluable.
What is an X Contract show like? What should fans expect from one of your performances?
X Contract: We promise to deliver an energetic performance, and while we of course play our songs, we like to change them and perform small interludes between the songs to make it interesting for the listener.
Any question you love being asked that I’ve missed? If so, what’s the answer?
X Contract: We think you’ve been good at asking questions. We can’t think of anything you’ve missed! Good job!
What are you up to once you’ve finished answering these questions?
X Contract: We’ve just finished recording video material for our single 'You Don’t Know Me', and that one will be released in mid December. In January, we’ll return to the creative state and see, what ideas the winter will come up with.
Anything else you would like to mention?
X Contract: Enjoy our LP, and please check out our websites (listed below).
Thanks again to the guys for their time. You can check out the preview of the band's album by clicking here.
Purchase link: CDBaby