The man of the night
At Ground Zero Festival I did an Interview with ‘The most terrifying Italian killer’ – UNEXIST! – He wasn’t that terrifying after all. The mind behind Unexist is Jappo, a.k.a. Francesco Lappica. After his brilliant live set and appearance on the Dominator CD I pulled him over for a Q&A.
Hi Unexist! How was your year so far?
It’s been interesting, because I had a lot of changes this year: my new label ‘Unexist Audio’, and I switched my booking agency. Now I’m signed at Most Wanted. A new beginning I guess.
What was the reason for the change?
I think it was the right time, artistically. You know I have been around for a long time. My first record was in 1995. That’s 20 years now. And after a while you reach the end of the cycle. So I guess I need a new challenge.
You did a lot in the hardcore scene but still many people don’t know you. Can you give us a little intro about yourself?
I started 20 years ago, as DJ Jappo. I was making tracks with Lancinhouse (Claudio Lancini, a Italian hardcore DJ) I was playing in a big club in Italy called Hardcore Number One. After that, I released my first records on Industrial Strength. A few years after that I came up with my new alias, Unexist. I wanted to do something different than what we were doing with Claudio Lancini. Sometimes I need a new challenge. Jappo was always a collab with Lancinhouse. I wanted to do more ‘ME-stuff’, showing who I am. I wanted to do a solo career.
We are here at Ground Zero Festival, What do you think about this festival?
Ground Zero, it’s AWESOME! I f#cking love it!
How many times did you play here at Ground Zero Festival?
Four, Five, Six, well I can’t remember the exact number, haha! –
So that’s a lot 😉
Yeah. ‘Often’, let’s stick to that!
So you play twice at Ground Zero Festival, once as Jappo and once as Unexist. What is the difference between those acts?
Jappo is old school. Unexist is about newer stuff.
You talk a lot about anger inside you, like the world is pissing you off. Is producing and playing hardcore music the way to express yourself?
Yes! I got to be honest. The anger was there when I was much younger, you know.
You are more relaxed now, it’s safe to sit here? Haha!
Yes, I’m more relaxed now. But the anger and the rage, I still got it in me but now more controlled. Music has always been an output for me. So I can unleash my anger trough my music. The first record that made me fall in love with hardcore was F#cking Hostile by Lenny Dee. That was one of the songs I loved at the time I started. And I also love Heavy Metal. So, hard music it always been my favorite type.
Do you think a collaboration with a Metal Band is possible? (We know you are a Slipknot fan)
I’m doing a new project, it’s called ‘Fail 2 comply’ with the 2 MC’s from the English based metal band called Tooms, and Malke, the E-Drummer at Dominator and OGM909. In that sense – Yeah, I am doing a project with Metal-artists.
You performed an incredible Live set together with Satronica and Malke at Dominator. How was it to play on Dominator mainstage this year?
Thanks man! It was really awesome! I was nervous all day. I had to wait because I was playing at the end, the second last set. And I was there early on, because me and Noize Suppressor went together to Dominator. But once you go on stage you forget everything else and all the anticipation is gone. It was probably one of the best experiences of my entire career!
Now some questions about the scene. What do you think about the Dutch hardcore compared to the Italian hardcore?
I don’t think it’s possible to make a comparison between the two. It’s the individuell artists that makes the difference not the country where they come from. There are a lot of artists that I love, from both countries.
Since last years the hardcore scene is growing again. What do you think about that? Will hardcore get to mainstream, and become softer?
Whenever it grows it’s always good! I don’t think hardcore will get mainstream like EDM anytime soon, and if it will become softer it won’t be hardcore anymore maybe they’ll call it softcore 🙂
Anywhere you would like to play sometime?
Dominator, MOH are always nice to play!
Besides playing at Dominator you also mixed the 3rd CD. What can we expect from the new album?
The new album has tracks mostly from that 3rd CD, including a few new ones! As you could hear from the Dominator CD, on this album I wanted to cover all the spectrums of hardcore. From slow to fast, from more melodic to just craziness, because honestly I hate the trend of dividing everything into 1000 sub-genres. The way I see it every artist should have their own interpretation of hardcore and this is mine. This is hardcore seen through Unexist’s eyes
On the album are a lot of collaborations. Is there a reason for that?
I do like to collaborate with other artists. You have a different perspective on how you can make a track. It’s good to get input by people I respect their sound. It’s very inspiring!
‘Music is my weapon’ is one of our favourites, what is your favourite track of the album?
I don’t have a favourite really. Every track has a story behind it. ‘Music is my weapon’ because I think it’s the reflection of what I consider; hardcore, mean vocals, mean kicks and mean sounds!
‘Blaze it up’ because everybody knows I love weed as much as I love hardcore 🙂 so the song is kind of dedication to them. The vocals are from my long time friend from NYC The Void aka Charm who also shares the same passion. Also we are making a video for blaze it up and for that we teamed up with one of my best friends Cannabis cup winner and Father of the infamous Super Lemon Haze Franco Loja from Strainhunters.
He loves hardcore and when he heard the track he totally freaked out he loved it some much that he offered me to use their Strainhunters footage. I was in shock when he told me that! Even if we are very close friends he still is a legend for me and for the cannabis world. He’s Like the Angerfist of weed to make you understand 🙂
The collaboration with Delta 9, Shitting Teeth, is also very special because its 160 bpm and Fu#*ing Evil. We wanted to show that bpm don’t make the music harder it just makes it faster.
Do you have anyone on your list you would like to collaborate with?
Someone who I didn’t work with yet… Will be Tha Playah & Amnesys! – Why do you like them? Cause they ‘are geniuses. Their sound designing is beyond amazing. Their melodies are brilliant. Two great artists! And I think I collaborated with all the artist I wanted to collab with, haha. You know, that’s a good thing. I worked with Neophyte, Tieum, Mad Dog.
Final question; Is there anything you would like to share with us, something exclusive for your fans?
Hmmm… I think I told you guys everything already, haha :D! Oh well, as soon as I finished this album, I have three big remixes coming! And there is something exclusive coming with the release of my new album. I make 100 special editions. Won’t tell more about it now. So stay tuned!
Thank you Francesco for your time! The new album will be released in the beginning of October.