#MyRecordBag – Robotek Reagan shares his top ten experimental electronica tracks
Electronic experimentalist Robotek Reagan is on a roll since launching his new sci-fi influenced solo project last year – the former Dance Spirit member recently launched a new label, Void Space Institute, as well as appearances at venues such as Fabric London, Cityfox New York, and a myriad of other venues.
Now residing in Los Angeles, his latest release is Transhuman Agenda, a seven-track mini LP which blends techno, electronica, IDM, and the sounds of the universe. It’s arguably his biggest release to date, and has just been released on Void Space Institute – more information here.
Given his penchant for all things ethereal and otherworldly, 909originals asked him to compile a list of his top ten experimental electronic records. Over to you, Robotek Reagan.
Aphex Twin – 1st 44
“It’s always hard for me to pick my favourite Aphex Twin song, but recently I’ve really been enjoying this cut. The Collapse EP, of which this particular song resides, is a masterclass in mixing and engineering, as well as exciting and fresh glitchy tricks and mind-bending drum fills.
“On this particular cut, I really love the high fidelity cleanliness of the bass and how he uses various methods of distortion as accents and ‘trip outs;. It’s deliciously executed and makes my ears dance, and the hairs on my body stand straight while my skin goes into goosebump mode.”
Oneohtrix Point Never – Last Known Image Of A Song (Ryuichi Sakamoto Rework)
“Sakamoto is possibly my all-time favourite composer of orchestral works, as well as one of my favourite experimental artists. I discovered this particular song over the onset of the pandemic in the spring of 2020, and it’s been on my top list since.
“He captured the essence of the title of the original, which I don’t think I’ve actually heard, and the wild ambiance and harmonies and the way it unfolds evoke deep emotions in my soul—also more goosebump fodder.”
µ-Ziq – Turquoise Hyperfizz
“µ-Ziq is another experimental artist I’ve been indulging in since the late 90s, when I discovered his work in 7th grade on a Hotline file sharing community I was on, after the exodus from AOL warez channels.
“He put out a spectacular new album this year, and this particular cut fizzes all my hyper-circuits.”
Metaroom – EMBRYOGLYPH
“This year I’ve discovered one of my favourite new experimental artists: Metaroom. His work has quickly skyrocketed into my top lists; quick-paced, energetic, ADHD music, but not so overwhelming that it makes you feel chaotic.
“Expertly produced, mixed, mastered, and composed, the music is a constant stream of coherent thought shot through a crystal and refracting in multiple dimensions of beauty and FUN! Lots. Of. Fun! I love this song. He’s got an album coming soon, too”
yin2k X TOKYOPILL – ACCELA
“Another new artist I’ve gotten into this year is TOKYOPILL, who specialises in vibey-as-f**k glitched-out cyber-anime drum and bass.
“I say anime because a lot of the art and titles seem to revolve around things like Serial Experiments Lain, just to name the one I know. This particular cut he did with this yin2k fellow just came out, and I’d call it IDM-trap.”
Mark Pritchard – Be Like Water
“Mark Pritchard is another one of those artists I discovered in my early days of electronic music discovery on the internet, but under his Global Communication moniker.
“It’s hard for me to choose just one of his songs, so I’ll pick one that was put out in 2020, which I only just discovered while putting this list together!”
Autechre – carefree counter dronal
“What would an experimental music top list be without some Autechre? I remember completely disturbing the other camps around us at Burning Man back in 2018, blasting Autechre’s NTS Sessions super loud during a whiteout dust storm.
“Some people came to complain, but we were within the allowed decibel range. They even threatened to call the Burning Man Rangers on us. I’m like, ‘Uhmmmm, this is dust storm music’. They eventually left, defeated and haggard from a losing battle, our Autechre victory music rushing them away.”
Alexi Perälä – FI3AC2267050
“This guy is a MACHINE. Literally. He’s got 2363246102346123 albums and 23485023476502734658746365834 songs. I’m kinda not joking. He makes everything from techno to ambient to drum and bass to experimental drones and soundscapes and invented the Colundi tuning system.
“He’s one of those mystical god-like producer entities that has blessed the Earth realm with his sonic vision of the future.”
Sparkle Division – Oh No You Did Not!
“This is another one of those wild ones I discovered over the pandemic in 2020. It’s some mutant IDM jazz. The other cut off their album that’s really lovely is To Feel, but it’s a bit more on the pure chillout ambient side, whereas this cut (and the others) are just wild.”
DJ Nobu – Smoke Machine Podcast UN #34
“This might be breaking the rules, linking a full mix, but I like to break rules. Isn’t that what experimentalism is all about?”
“This mix taught me so much about life and the universe – I was listening to it on my first mescaline trip in my close friend’s RV at Burning Man many years ago. The whole mix is… well… an experience.
“If you were to take one song out of it, sure, it’s good on its own; but the way Nobu leads you from the primordial into the beauty and bizarre is a journey I think everyone needs to experience. Sit with being uncomfortable, sit with uncertainty: this mix will make you feel a gamut of emotions you might not know how to handle, but sitting through them will make you all the more resilient and maybe even open your eyes up to some deeper truths of reality.
“Or you can listen to it with some sarcastic jokers like John Acquaviva and Alex Herman, and it will turn into the goofiest experience you’ll ever have—just make sure to jiggle the toilet handle.”
Robotek Reagan – Transhuman Agenda is out now on Void Space Institute.