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Thursday 23rd, May 2002
Laurence 'Arksun' Rapaccioli

I believe it was a cold night here in Norway when I first heard “one day (part 2)”. The warmth of the track overwhelmed me and gave me a new perspective on what trance could be. Being signed to the brilliant Zone Recordings means quality, and Arksun is no exception! Laurence Rapaccioli developes his sound rather than just sticking to one style, which is not common for trance producers theese days. [b][i]Ambient, downbeat, progressive, massive... [/b][/i]Trance.nu took a dive into the mind of this hot upcoming producer to talk about his tracks, future plans etc.....

Question: You add your music to mp3.com, how do you feel about the sharing of mp3’s in general?

Hmmm, tricky to answer fully without writing pages n pages. There’s 2 sides to the argument. Some argue sharing mp3’s affects sales, others argue that your more likely to purchase a track if you’ve heard it all the way through on your home hi-fi and really grow to like it. What the real truth of the situation is I don’t know, but if it is heavily affecting sales then that is a bad thang because, whilst some people argue this is a ‘power to the people’ 2 fingers up to the major labels, mp3’s sharing doesn’t discriminate against just the big guns, small independent releases also end up on the likes of audiogalaxy..and it can be hard enough as it is to make ends meet. I can’t slag it off though.. I have to admit I do sometimes share mp3’s myself wow)

Question: You name BT as a source of inspiration, how do you feel about him “going commercial”?

Depends what you mean by ‘commercial’ . That word has become a very subjective thing depending on the person. Some people define ‘commercial’ as meaning the artist has started producing music that is too mainstream (or perhaps the real truth is, the artist has changed direction in their music which the listener simply doesn’t like anymore). If you’re being literal, BT ‘sold out’ n came commercial the day his very first release was made!, in the same way I became commercial when Astrodancer was released.

I don’t feel he’s sold out, if he wants to produce an N-Sync track.. so what!?!. Doesn’t mean he can’t continue his personal music projects anymore. I love all his solo albums and I’m sure his next album release will be just as good

Question: What was your main inspiration when producing ONE DAY?... I mean..... What an AMAZING track!!!! Can it get any more emtional?

Thank you, I’m glad you enjoyed it. Yes ‘One Day’ was something I really felt close to when making it. Heavily influenced by emotions at the time, sometimes when your feeling down or sad, the best way to get it out of your system is to ‘pour’ it out in music. This is the same for most artists I think, the best material always comes from strong raw emotions within and not having to ‘think’ too much about the direction of the track, but instead just letting it flow.
Having borrowed my friends guitar really helped to make this track. It’s that real electric guitar melody in the breakdown that I played that became the back-bone to the whole track, inspiring all the other elements to fall into place.

Question: Your remix of Jaya – Stellar is brilliant! Will we see more remixes from you in the future?

Well, as long as labels keep wanting me to remix for them, then yes. There is one remix completed end of 2001 which will hopefully see the light of day this year. It’s one I’m very proud of and my first breakbeat remix too, so look out for that one!. (The track’s name is Percussio and is currently licensed to Collision Records)

Question: You say that you would like to produce music for motion pictures, are you closer to your goal now?

Not yet, partly because I haven’t really been actively trying to get on that ladder (making music for short videos etc..) yet because I still don’t feel I’m up to the job. Making music for films isn’t just about coming up with some cool chilled track, it’s an incredible skill that few people can really pull off so I still have a long way to go.

Question: Drugs play a big part of the electronic music scene. What is your view on music vs. Drugs?

Well I’ve never been a drug user myself (apart from alcohol), but I’ve nothing against most drugs or drug takers. If people want to take them to dance to or produce music with then that’s fine by me, each to their own. Clearly drugs have influenced the history of dance music in a big way, but I don’t particuarly want to analyse it though, I’d rather just get on with making music n let things take their own course wow)

Question: If you could remix any song in the world, what would it be?

Ahh, this one’s easy. There’s 1 track that immediately stands out for me, the track that effectively made me who I am and what I do today and that’s BT’s ‘Loving You More’ from his debut album Ima. Just incredible melodies and one of the best male vocals ever imho.

Question: Who would you most like to produce with?

Apart from BT you mean? wow) Names that spring to mind include Hans Zimmer, FSOL, Quincy Jones, Bjork, John Williams & Sunday Club.

Question: Where will Arksun be in 10 years from now?

Hopefully still making music! and I hope to a wider audience. I can’t promise I’ll make progressive trance forever, but I’ll always be making some form of music you can be sure of that.

Question: You have earlier stated that you dislike acts like ATB and Dj Jean, why?

Because most of their music does nothing for me. Too predictable n cliché n cheesy. Don’t get me wrong, even I like some cheese from time to time..but there’s nice cheese and there’s smelly cheese. You can always tell straight away whether a piece of music is from the heart with at least some emotion in it, or whether it’s just a ‘join the dots hmmm lets think of a cool idea n jiggle bits about’ track that has no soul, regardless of whether it’s a classical piece or gabba techno!. All genre’s n styles have good music and bad emotionless music, to my ears ATB & DJ Jean tend to fall into the latter category.

Question: Trance.nu has LOTS of talented artists that are looking for “that big break”, any advice to them?

Never make music with the frame of mind that the track is just the sort of thing X label would like, make music for YOU and you first. Then and only then will your best come out. Keep demo CD’s/tapes to 4 tracks or less and always put your best track FIRST. Above all, never give up and have lots of patience.

Question: What was the biggest reason for your succes: hard work, luck or connections?

All 3 have come into play at points in my career. You get connections through hard work, luck sadly is something you can’t control, but if you have the patience, that special bit of luck will come along n help you out.

Question: What do you prefer: stadium events or underground clubs?

I’ve never really experienced a true stadium event so can’t compare. My only comparison would be to something like seeing Underworld live @ Homelands a few years back. That really was an incredible experience, but then so is a really good night out at your fave local club. I’d have to say I love both.

Question: How do you feel in general about the commercialism of dance music?

I think it’s the same for all genre’s really. There seems to be the so called commercial main-stream types of tracks and then the underground stuff, whether it be trance,house, hip-hop, folk or even classical!.
I can’t stand most of the trancey shite that does end up in the top 40 as they have no real soul, but if you swapped things round and had all the major radio stations playing underground quality progressive music during the day and the major labels pushing these 6-11 minute mixes… would they sell as many?. Honestly I don’t think so. One positive way of looking at commercialism of dance music is that it can help new innovative producers to steer the music into new and interesting directions. There will always be exciting and interesting underground music.

Question: Any new upcoming producers that you feel we should be aware of?

Andy Lindsay is a name to watch out for as he creates music which simply can’t be slotted into any particular genre!. His tracks really are a real cross-breed hybrid stuff, yet still very club friendly n great to dance/listen to.

Question: What releases do you have in store?

Earth One is out on promo and should be officially released through Zone in the next couple of months. Alliance will at last be coming out on Collision this year. Excelsior may also be a 2002 release again through Zone, but this isn’t definite. Other than those, all other tracks are on-going projects, but hopefully I’ll have my very first vocal dance track out this year with the incredibly Ashley doing the singing duties.

Question: Any final words to trance.nu’s readers?

I was hoping to come up with something really profound n powerful as an end statement…. but my minds gone blank!.. DOH

Name: Laurence Rapaccioli

Aliases: Arksun

Age: 25

Website: www.arksun.co.uk

Nationality: British

Favorite dj: I’d still pick Sasha

Favorite producer: Brian Transeau

Favorite tune: impossible to answer, depends on mood etc..

Favorite label: don’t have one

Favorite food: Anything Italian

Favorite drink: Tea

Favorite movie: Lord Of The Rings – The Fellowship Of The Ring

Trance.nu recommended:

Arksun – One day (part 1 & 2)

Arksun – Astrodancer

Arksun – Dragonfire

Arksun – Alliance

Arksun – Mist in sorrow

Arksun – Be true to me

Jaya – Stellar (Arksun remix)

Elias – Spacial (Arksun remix)

For more information, check out theese sites:



Trance.nu thanks Laurence and Tim Harley at Zone Recordings for making this interview possible!

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