A true jack of all trades, a true scene veteran, and a truly busy drummer, producer, composer, writer and graphic designer. Meet Kris Kylven, also known as Mr. Ultimate Xperience.
You have quite a colourful history as a musician. For instance, you’ve been drumming with Goa Trance pioneers like Juno Reactor and Ultimate Xperience (UX). Please share with us some memorable moments of your long-year career!
It all begun around ‘93 with the electronic drums. I was experimenting with one of my first Industrial projects and I met this guy called Laurent, a pretty good DJ in the booming rave scene at the time. He became a friend and asked me to play / jam at his birthday party at the Palace (Paris). So I did, that was my first real live drumming experience and it turned out to be the legendary Laurent Garnier. I still have one drum pad from that kit. Another great moment was when we played the Ultimate Xperience album live for the first time in ‘96 at Brixton Academy. System 7, Simon Posford (Hallucinogen), Alex Paterson (The Orb) and Youth (Killing Joke) played as well, and the venue was packed. We had a nice Simmons 80’s kit, the first midi guitar for RX Heaven and a huge Mackie mixer for ex-partner in crime Pete Martin. The gig was amazing, both visually and sound-wise, we even had TV monitors on stage running our 3D logo. Then I remember playing with Killing Joke in a studio on Oxford Street, my old time heroes. I was a bit nervous, but they were really nice and fun to be around. Another milestone was the opening for VNV Nation at Islington Academy with Kloq (ex-Empirion), been a huge fan of their music for years so that was a real treat. And last but not least I remember the 2014 Poland tour with Juno Reactor. To be able to play with such a high-quality band alongside the amazing and long-time hero drummer Budgie (Siouxsie & The Banshees), Amir (Radio Tarifa, Zoo Bazaar), and of course my dear friend and mentor Ben Watkins made me reconsider music and stage performance. I hope there’s more milestones to come now with Ultimate Xperience.
Tell us about 3 drummers you’re stoked about!
John Bonham (Led Zeppelin), the first drummer that caught my attention at a young age with his unique style and his big kick and snare sounds that are always a part of my compositions. Danny Carey (Tool), part of an amazing Prog Metal band, really something to see and hear. Justin Bennett (Skinny Puppy), always on time and relaxed on the top of all his machinery – it’s just unbelievable and inspiring.
What keeps you going in the Psytrance scene, what is it that still fascinates and motivates you?
The artistic freedom that I experience here. Also most of the people connected to psychedelic music are more likely to comprehend what I am trying to achieve: Basically creating movie landscapes and story lines in a dance format. However, it’s not too Psy anymore, for instance I no longer use unnecessary, annoying effects. This period of time is over for us, after the Juno Reactor live experience we are seeking to make people travel and expand in a more refined way.
So exactly what are you up to at the moment?
The Ultimate Xperience ‘Lazarus Rising’ mini LP (79 min) is out on Neogoa Records, the fascinating story of Lazarus was inspired by 4 facts: The UX rebirth, the birth of our best mate M-Rick ‘s son Lazare (French for Lazarus), Richpa’s (Neogoa) artwork idea, and a tribute to Sir David Bowie… Currently I’m working on the 2nd CD for ‘The Realm Of A New Dawn’ album coming this year. Plus remixes (Non-Trance) for The 69 Eyes, a Finnish Gothic Rock band, new stuff from Citizen Of The Universe feat. Ghetto Priest (Asian Dub Foundation), a project with a Massive Attack / DnB / Dub UK style, Element Over Nature (‘97 Psy – Industrial project, single reissues, remasters and new songs) and last but not least Master Of The Universe 20th anniversary single on DAT Records including 2 massive remixes. A few gigs are in the pipeline for this year and for the next with the goal of performing at many festivals with our brand new live show and sound.Ultimate Xperience Website