How would it feel to hear an oldskool hard track on mainstream radio again? How about if heaven forbid it should penetrate the charts? This is the ambition of oldskool legends Altern8.
Since 2000 6 Christmas number 1s have been either x factor or Popstars finalists.
Altern8 have rereleased Activ8 (come with me) to compete for the Christmas number 1. Its not the first time such a campaign has been mounted. In 2009 Rage against the machine re released killing in the name and managed to get to number 1 after a highly successful Facebook campaign. This was the first song to hit Christmas number 1 spot through downloads alone.
In the same way as Rage against the machine, Altern8 have launched a facebook campaign. As of writing this article they had 27,333 likes, and had reached number 30 with no radio play from Radio 1! which is a hug achievement in itself. The Facebook page is here https://www.facebook.com/altern8xmas and twitter campaign is
They have released 10 different versions of the track which all contribute to the chart position.
Why are well established acts doing this? There is a divide within the music industry about the effect X factor has. The bias seems to be more towards criticising the ITV show.
On http://www.altern8xmas.com/ it says “Every year it’s the same old F-Factor dross in the Xmas charts.
Corporate cronies and their performing puppets doing cover versions, multi-millionaire international rock bands, celebrity offspring singing advert music…”
Many major names have been vocal about their dislike for the show. Following are a few of many people who have criticised X factor.
- Sting calls it “Televised karaoke” with contestants encouraged to “conform to stereotypes. “
- Damen Albarn (Blur & The Gorillaz) said “creating a mindset that suggests you can get something for nothing and that it’s easy to acquire status and fame”.
- Graham Coxon from Blur says “”being a musician is not something you can become overnight” and calls the voice and X factor as disgraceful.
- Moby Says it “cheapens music”
- Calvin Harris says the X factor “”frightening stranglehold on the British charts” and shows lack of creativity
- MC Kinky said “shows like X Factor and Britains Got Talent reduce the art of making music and practising your craft to the level of a low rent game show with huge financial backing and support. It’s a means to make money, not a means to produce ground breaking or interesting artists that demonstrate what they are feeling or are compelled to do. It’s corporate.”
Who are Altern8? Who are the men behind the masks?
Altern8 (also known as Nexus 21) one of the most well known and highly regarded duos of the oldskool hardcore scene, known for their heavy bassline tracks. The Duo are made up of Mark Archer and Chris Peat. Altern8 were very distinctive when performing in their chemical warfare suits & facemasks.
Classic Altern8 tracks include “Activ-8”, “E-vapor-8”, “Frequency”, “Brutal-8-E”, “Armageddon”, “Move My Body”, “Hypnotic St-8” and “Infiltrate 202”.
They also have a fantastic live PA which you really should go to see!
We caught up with the duo earlier and they said “We are totally blown away with how much love there is for Activ 8 and Altern 8 as a group, the track has captured the attention of a new generation of ravers as well as brought back wonderful memories to the ravers from back in the day”.
Activ-8 isn’t immune to chart success. in 1991 when it was originally released it got to number 3 only beaten by the years best selling singles Black or White by Michael Jackson and Dizzy by the Wonderstuff. Bizarre Inc interestingly got to number 4!
Acidtechno.co.uk & Acid909.co.uk are fully behind Altern8 on this campaign as we object to the negative effect that X factor has had on the music industry coupled with very high respect for the legendary Altern8
DJ Spliffy B makes the observation “Its very difficult and in some cases not worth releasing tracks around Christmas anymore as X factor has had weeks\months of constant TV promotion leading up to the release that other musicians just cant compete with. Acts like Altern 8 and Rage against the machine are doing the music industry a service whilst keeping good music in the public eye. I love this track by Altern8, I happen to have 2 copies of the original pressing and I have bought all the different versions of it this time round.”
If you would like to buy the single you can get it from