Rocky and Diesel began working on their first album as a duo, and drew on their earliest influences of pre-house warehouse parties. Rare groove, soul, jazz, go-go music, all different sorts of stuff being played, says Diesel. In Ibiza in the late Eighties, we’d be dancing to Acid Trax, then a Rolling Stones record, or the Woodentops. And 20 years later, says Rocky, there’s a bit of that going on again. Clubs like the Social have an anything-goes ethos - King Tubby one minute, a dubstep record the next and then a house thing.
When things get sectioned off you just lose all sense of progression or creativity, says Diesel. So when it came to working on the ‘House Of Xpress 2’ album, the club dates were scaled back and they retreated to the studio armed with a spectrum of music old and new. With us, it’s always records, because we're DJs and record collectors, says Rocky. Their choice of vocalists was equally eclectic. We always try and go for someone whose not associated with dance music, says Rocky. Such as Rob Harvey, one half of the D.O.T with Mike Skinner (The Streets) and former frontman of Leeds alt-rockers the Music, who previously collaborated with X-Press 2 on Kill 100 and co-wrote a new track called The Blast. The lyrics are quite cryptic, says Diesel. I never asked him what they meant. It’s got a double chorus and its bit Lennon-ist that’s Lennon, not Lenin.