Interview with XSKARMA: ‘Changing’ highlights the impact of Climate Change
XSKARMA – “CHANGING”
COOL MUSIC TO COOL THE PLANET. OUT NOW.
Xskarma released ‘Changing’ recently, which hopes to highlight the impact of Climate Change and the path to Mass Extinction for much of our planet’s wildlife. The brainchild of Bristol-based producer/drummer/songwriter xskarma. ‘Changing’ was inspired by the amazing speech by Greta Thunberg at the UN Climate Summit in 2019, where she passionately stated:-
xskarma explains: “Our children are going to hold this generation accountable for any failure to act now to avert the climate crisis. Greta Thunberg and her FridaysForFuture organisation are the most powerful voices on our planet today for Climate Action! And I hope that this song provides a little moral support to Greta and all the FridaysForFuture campaigners. They are our future!”
Every stream will help fund planting of more trees in Uganda
This may seem like a pretty heavy subject for a pop song, but there’s ultimately a positive call to action. Every stream of the song will directly help to fund the planting of more trees in Uganda, something positive we can all do whilst helping to raise further awareness of the terrifying impact of climate change. The tree-planting program is managed by https://onetreeplanted.org/
‘Changing’ is a trip-hop inspired indie pop song with a driving bassline and soaring silky female vocals, mixed with a sample of Greta Thunberg’s excoriating speech at the UN. xskarma’s influences include Portishead, Massive Attack, Zero7 and other classic 90’s trip-hop bands; having played the drums and recorded and produced a number of bands in Bristol and the south-west.
Listen to music. Save the planet.
xskarma released a first single ‘Your Eyes’ in February 2020 and the follow-up album, ‘Glory In Numbers’, in November 2020. With ‘Changing’ the band aim to help raise awareness of the climate crisis and show that there are simple things we can all do to make a difference. Listen to music. Save the planet.
1. “CHANGING” is your new song. Highlighting the impact of Climate Change and the path to Mass Extinction for much of our planet’s wildlife. Can you tell us more about what inspired you to write it?
The track started with this hypnotic drum groove that I had been playing around with. I was playing this in a session with a friend of mine James Eller, who is an amazing session bass player (The The, Damien Saez, Nick Low, Julian Cope, et al). James locked into this groove and came up with a great riff. From this, I added a Rhodes part and various other synths and instrumentation. Somehow the phrase ‘Changing’ came to mind, and this got me thinking about Climate Change.
I revisited Greta Thunberg’s inspirational speech to the 2019 UN Climate Summit that gave me the idea for the narrative. I built the lyrics around this. It’s clear the planet is warming and there is overwhelming scientific evidence for this, but there are still some high-profile morons trying to deny it! Back last August Trump was still in office and his take on the climate crisis was both laughable and frightening! That was the basis for the track.
I sang the demo version, but my voice is an acquired taste. 😊 So I approached Jodie Mellor to provide the vocal.
2. You sample Greta Thunberg’s passionate speech at the UN on the track. How important do you think this is to include?
I think it is really important on a number of levels. The passion that Greta inspires really adds energy to the track, and the final message is critical “We Will Never Forgive You”. This really is a challenge to Governments all over the world that they can’t ignore Climate Change any longer.
3. Every stream of the song will directly help to fund the planting of more trees in Uganda. Something positive we can all do whilst helping to raise further awareness of the terrifying impact of climate change.
You only need to plant 100 trees in your lifetime to offset your personal carbon footprint! I felt this was a really positive way to show that we can all make a difference. So I decided to sponsor a tree-planting program with funds generated from the song, and in my research, I came across OneTreePlanted. They are working with the Jane Goodall Institute on a tree-planting project, which aims to plant 3m trees in the central belt of Uganda. To help restore some of the most important forests for Chimpanzees.
4. With ‘Changing’ you aim to help raise awareness of the climate crisis. What simple things can we all do to make a difference. What do you think we can all do to affect change?
Try to buy your electricity from a supplier that is providing the most carbon-neutral energy, i.e. one that use mostly carbon zero sources. Get behind one of the key charities in this space such as FridaysForFuture, or XR, or Greenpeace, and do what you can to lobby the Government. We have a critical opportunity at the upcoming UN Climate Summit in Glasgow in November. The UK Government has an opportunity to help set a more aggressive agenda and encourage other countries to follow suit.
5. xskarma released a first single ‘Your Eyes’ in February 2020 and the follow-up album, ‘Glory In Numbers’, in November 2020. Can you describe your music and sound for us?
It is trip-hop inspired but perhaps re-invented for today with some indie-pop type influences. Much of what I write is inspired by bands like Portishead, Massive Attack, Zero 7 and other classic 90’s trip-hop bands. Also with more current bands like Tame Impala, The Weeknd, Chvrches thrown in.
6. How has this past year under lockdown been for you?
I have been socially distancing for years. So life in the studio working on my own songs is not so different. But I really do miss not being able to play live!
7. You are based in Bristol. What are your favourite things about the city?
It has a very rich culture and there are lots of different musical influences. It is also a beautiful city with lots of green space. Also, it’s close enough to the countryside that you can get out for amazing walks very easily.
8. What are the 3 things you can’t wait to do again, which you haven’t been able to do this past year?
Go to the pub with some friends. Play some more live gigs, and go to Italy to see my friends there.
9. What is your top tip for living your best life?
Be more Luna! Luna is our dog, and she is the happiest thing I have ever known. So I am trying to BML.
10. What are your plans and ambitions for the rest of 2021?
I am releasing a new single called ‘Love Will Hold My Hand’ in early May. I have at least another 3 singles already in the bag. So I plan to release a new single every 6-8 weeks.