Wonderland.

New Noise: Xander Ghost

With no labels and no limits – we meet the new “anti-artist”.

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Xander Ghost welcomes you into his world. Neither a producer, singer or songwriter, the self-dubbed “anti-artist” considers himself solely a creative and is uncompromising in that. With meaningful and haunting melodies, a session of Ghost will leave you feeling emotionally ruffled. Untainted by the gluttony and temptation that fills the music industry, he is simply here to create and share his own uninfluenced visions.

Debut project “Psychotropica” is the first insight into the mind of Xander Ghost. Taking inspiration from a past relationship and feelings of loneliness, he uses airy spaces and thoughtful lyrics to leave listeners feeling nostalgic too. Often avoiding producing music in the studio, this paradox of an artist is carving his own path in the industry. Let’s join him, or at least meet him…

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Hello Xander! As an emerging artist, how would you like to be perceived by your audience?

I usually don’t like interviews. When I’m following an artist or an entrepreneur, I don’t want to know everything about them straight away. You get me? That’s what gets me interested in them. I connect to people more than their art and their accomplishments – to them personally!

So what’s your background in music? You’re self-taught right?

Yeah, no background. I never played music. I heard one album, which is 808s & Heartbreaks and the beats were so easy in my head. I just heard it and was like “oh this is cool”. I just thought it was such a cool hobby. I actually used to play football.

Was that your ambition when you were younger?

I was a really good player actually. I had an injury and then didn’t know what I wanted to do. I was listening to 808s & Heartbreaks while I had the injury. I heard the beats and it was so easy…

Was their one particular song?

Yeah! “Bad news.” It sounded so easy to make. It was complex but it was good. So, I literally bought a laptop and I really didn’t know anything. I just started bullshitting. Seriously. I asked a friend, “Oh, how do you do this music?” and he said there was this program, so I just downloaded and worked on it. Then, I decided I wanted to be a singer because I started singing over these bullshit beats. I met a producer guy at college and then he started not showing up because I was a bad artist.

How so?

Unrefined and no vision. I didn’t know how to do it so I was just copying. I reached out to this producer guy in college and he kept bailing on me. That’s why I started my own production. If I want to make a song, I can make it on my own. I didn’t want to have to wait on anyone else. I used to have to wait for him and I’m really punctual. I’m too punctual that I’m an asshole.

With my life, I’ve never wanted to compromise what I wanted to do. I’m really punctual and that producer was always late. That fucked me up. I didn’t understand, like how are you going to come at nine when it’s at six? That frustrated me. He taught me that you need to do shit yourself. Not like being a control freak, but you need to take control. That was the start of my independence, making sure that you do your own shit.

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(RIGHT) Shirt JUNLI, trousers STYLIST’S OWN, glasses THOM BROWNE, watch ROLEX

Out of all of your business ventures, what do you think you’ll change the world with?

I think that music will for me. It really does connect people. Me and you can be friends based on the music that we like. Like if you like Lana Del Rey and I like Lana Del Rey, it’s organic and we are on the same page. For me, music is the first outlet that I want to put out to make people connect to that. My stuff is based on day-to-day stuff and relationships, because I really believe that relationships are mad strong. If you have a good mindset at home, with a good girlfriend or wife or whatever, you will perform better at work and in your day-to-day.

Throughout the album, what are the main lyrical themes?

I really like that to be decided by the audience but from my side I wanted it to be very like storytelling, rather than “I fucked this bitch at the club today”. That’s not me. That’s disgusting. It’s a story mainly based on my past relationship. So maybe people will connect that with their relationships. There’s a song called “Violent Love”, because sometimes relationships can be, not violent, but emotionally violent. “Early Morning Blues” is one of my favourite songs. That’s about everyone feeling shit on a Monday. My ex-girlfriend always felt shit on the Monday because her job. I didn’t have a job. So it’s like, “there goes Early Morning Blues yeah…” Monday still feels hectic sometimes.

You’re yet to take the project to the stag right, what would be your dream vision for your live show?

I’m inspired by WoodKid. I don’t know if you know him but you should check him out. His shows are the best live shows of all fucking time. I went to a show in Paris and I died. It changed my life and he’s really underrated. He’s got like 100 people on stage and that’s the shit I’m on.

Photography
Marta Literska
Fashion
David James Cochrane
Words
Louise Bonner
Production
Gener8 Ventures
Thanks to
Blakes Hotel and Tramp London
New Noise: Xander Ghost

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