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My biggest influence has been my emotional life and the impact it has on my art.

In the Original Soundtrack of your life, who are the artists who have influenced your music the most?

My biggest influence has been my emotional life and the impact it has on my art. The need and desire to express my nuanced feelings and try to connect the commonalities with those out there who may feel the same, or at least can relate. More than other music, it’s the life events, images, words, feelings and personal and group motivations that inspire what comes out of me, not only in art but in how I live my life.

Was there an exact moment in your life, a sort of revelation, when you decided to dedicate yourself to music-making? What or who moved you to become a musician?

From the time I was a child music made me jump up, Electric Avenue and Great Balls Of Fire were big favourites, but when I got to be around 10, 11 years old, listening to Depeche Mode, New Order, J&MC, MBV etc (courtesy of my older, hipper cousins), I became obsessed and started playing with guitars, drum machines, synths and FX (courtesy of my uncle who was a music/recording guy). The whole rave/techno shit started for me when I was 16, in the early 90s – yeah, I may not look it, but damn, 40 ain’t far off, haha, preserved by the lifestyle that should have killed me long ago!

You have a vast and prolific life as a musician. Indeed, you have released excellent music not only together with other people, as with Azari & III, but also as a solo artist. After all these years, you came up with Heavy Friends. What is it about?

I left Toronto to itself after doing all I could for it, lived in Milan, London, Amsterdam, and also toured constantly, making music with my friends in all the places I visited. The Heavy Friends series is the fruit of those collaborations.


Your new release, Heavy Friends Pt. II, is a very mature EP that is not just techno. Can you tell us more about this excellent new release?

Well, I love the psychedelic and hypnotic qualities of (good) techno, but I’m from an indie rock background, guitars and shit, shoe gaze, dreamy melodies, also from a literary family where writing and reading were daily consumptions, so I don’t enjoy just making beats for people to party to. I want them to feel it in their bodies and move to it, if it’s that kind of track I’m making – party tracks let’s call them – but I want to hit deeper, to make people meditate on their lives, their existence, their social circles, their love affairs. Even if it’s dark and hard to address, I don’t believe in partying for the sake of partying, I believe in transcendental experience and the healing aspects of such.

Marsupials, Saytek & Dave DeValera, Tuxxedo, Kim E and Gingy… Who are these people?

Friends, lovers, strangers in the night, one-night stands. I’ll get down with anyone who hits me on a deeper level, and who believes in making art, not just some bros sat in front of a laptop with a controller making beats. Nope, that bro shit don’t flow with me. Need a higher state of consciousness and deeper degree of descent into our identity and freedom from ego in the process. The dark night of the soul, hello!

Where is your head at right now?

Literally? In my lover’s lap in Mexico City. Figuratively, in the clouds and in the dirt where I dwell and fish for new concepts and motivations to keep doing this thing we do, this weird, wild, sometimes seemingly juvenile and pointless pursuit, but often life-affirming and rewarding as anything else I can imagine…

Any plans for the future? Any dream to make come true?

My dream is to never get old, never get sick, never lie and never die, but my reality and plans for now are to complete this all-consuming second AIII LP I’m almost finished making, and set it free to the world to use, consume, judge, critique, freak out to as they see fit. I don’t aim to please the lowest common denominator, try to fit in, make it big, f*&% all that. I’m an experience freak and a multifaceted artist, not a DJ or what they call a “producer” these days. Nope, I’m doing this for the real cats who don’t buy into the bullshit, don’t let the hype cloud their judgment and social acceptance steer their tastes. There is so much I’d consider useless out there that is actually popular and accepted, even in the underground, well, we need shit so we can have roses.


How important is London for you? Can you tell us about your best experiences in London?

I’m partners in a studio in London and I love it there. Some of my closest friends and family are there. I was in and out for years, but damn, sort your Border force coz I ain’t into dealing with that shit at this age! F*&%, I’m Canadian and got the Queen on my money, bust my balls at Stansted, y por qué??? Ha, well, I’ll be back soon…

Any future live act or DJ set in London?

My new, second LP is set for release in early 2016, after that, the world will bear witness to the new Ali X live experience, whatever the hell that ends up being haha, and London is ground zero, so yes, I’m a-coming, mothers, babies and teenage bunnies better start running!

As SEEN mag. is about art, architecture, culture, music, fashion, gastronomy, shopping and entertainment, what would be your places-to-be and personal recommendations of what to do in London by day and by night?

By day, cruise around looking for what food my stomach can deal with, on Thursdays there is nice little artisanal food market in front of Kings Cross Station, yummy pies and some nice Italian pastries, Sicilian cannoli etc. At night, I leave it to my best homies, Dom and Vic, to pick the hot spot, though we often hit Soho House, Groucho’s, and the Korean restaurants near my old offices on Denmark St, though the construction there near Charing Cross seems to have pushed my favourite K-Spot outta the hood… London, damn miss you… let’s link up and have intercourse again soon!


  • Text Toni Bass
  • Artist Publicist Neil Bainbridge