Aphex Twin

Last updated

Aphex Twin
Aphex Twin 2.jpg
Richard James performing in Turin in 2007
Background information
Birth nameRichard David James
Also known as
  • AFX
  • Blue Calx
  • Bradley Strider
  • Caustic Window
  • The Dice Man
  • GAK
  • Q-Chastic
  • Polygon Window
  • Power-Pill
  • The Tuss
Born (1971-08-18) 18 August 1971 (age 47)
Limerick, County Limerick, Ireland
Origin Lanner, Cornwall, England
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Record producer
  • musician
  • composer
  • remixer
  • DJ
Instruments
Years active1985–present
Labels
Associated acts
Website aphextwin.warp.net

Richard David James (born 18 August 1971), best known by the stage name Aphex Twin, is a British musician. [1] He is best known for his influential and idiosyncratic work in styles such as ambient techno and "intelligent dance music" during the 1990s. [2] [3] He is among the most acclaimed figures in contemporary electronic music. [2] [4]

Stage name pseudonym used by performing artist

A stage name is a pseudonym used by performers and entertainers, such as actors, comedians, singers and musicians. Sometimes performers will also use a stage age or stage birthdate. Such titles are adopted for a wide variety of reasons and may be similar or nearly identical to an individual's birth name. In some situations, a performer will eventually adopt their title as a legal name, although this is often not the case. Personal names or nicknames that make up the professional name should not necessarily be considered as a "fake name" like Lady Gaga : for example: Miley Cyrus: born Destiny Hope Cyrus, uses her personal nickname "Miley" and her maiden name "Cyrus" as her professional name.

Ambient techno is a 1990s offshoot of techno and ambient music that united the atmospheric textures of ambient music with the melodic and rhythmic elements of techno and electro. It was pioneered by electronic artists such as B12, Aphex Twin, the Black Dog, Higher Intelligence Agency, and Biosphere.

Intelligent dance music is a form of electronic music originating in the early 1990s, which was regarded as "cerebral" and better suited to "home listening" than dancing. Emerging from electronic and rave music styles such as techno, acid house, ambient music, and breakbeat, IDM tended to rely upon individualistic experimentation rather than adhering to characteristics associated with specific genres. Prominent artists associated with the genre include Aphex Twin, μ-Ziq, the Black Dog, the Orb, the Future Sound of London, Autechre, Luke Vibert, Squarepusher, Venetian Snares and Boards of Canada.

Contents

Raised in Cornwall, James began releasing acid techno records in the early 1990s under aliases such as AFX and Polygon Window, and co-founded the independent label Rephlex Records in 1991. [4] He first received acclaim for his 1992 debut album Selected Ambient Works 85–92 . He signed to UK electronic label Warp the following year, and later rose to mainstream popularity with the charting singles "Come to Daddy" (1997) and "Windowlicker" (1999) along with their music videos, both directed by Chris Cunningham.

Cornwall County of England

Cornwall is a ceremonial county in South West England, bordered to the north and west by the Celtic Sea, to the south by the English Channel, and to the east by Devon, the River Tamar forming the border between them. Cornwall is the westernmost part of the South West Peninsula of the island of Great Britain. The southwesternmost point is Land's End and the southernmost Lizard Point. Cornwall has a population of 563,600 and an area of 3,563 km2 (1,376 sq mi). It is administered by Cornwall Council, apart from the Isles of Scilly, which are administered separately. The county town is Truro, Cornwall's only city.

Acid techno is a genre of techno that developed out of late 1980s Chicago acid house, particularly its "squelching" synthesizer sound obtained by using very distinctive instruments created mainly by Roland, such as the SH-101 and TB-303 for bass and lead sounds, and the TR-707, TR-808, and TR-909 for percussion. Acid specifically refers to the use of the 303, or any other synthesizer designed to emulate its unique sound. While modern electronic instruments have memory banks of different sounds or patches, these machines had to be manually set by adjusting control knobs. The acid sound is achieved obtained by either setting the controls to extreme parameters, or manipulating them in real-time as the track was being recorded, a technique known as tweaking.

Rephlex Records was a record label launched in 1991 in Cornwall by electronic musician Richard D. James and Grant Wilson-Claridge. The label coined the term braindance to describe the otherwise uncategorisable output of Aphex Twin and fellow artists.

After releasing the album Drukqs in 2001, James went into a period of inactivity as Aphex Twin but continued to issue new music under other aliases, including the 2005 Analord EP series as AFX and a pair of 2007 releases as The Tuss, as well as archival material such as an unreleased 1994 LP in 2014 as Caustic Window. James returned as Aphex Twin in 2014 with the album Syro , which won a Grammy Award for Best Dance/Electronic Album.

<i>Drukqs</i> 2001 studio album by Aphex Twin

Drukqs is the fifth studio album by Aphex Twin, a pseudonym used by British electronic musician Richard D. James. The album is a double album and peaked at number 22 on the UK Albums Chart, selling 11,476 copies in its first week of release. It was released to divided reception, with many critics dismissing it relative to his earlier work. It would be James's final album under the Aphex Twin moniker until the release of 2014's Syro.

<i>Analord</i> 2004 EP series by Richard D. James

Analord is a series of eleven 12" vinyl records released in 2005 by UK-based electronic music artist Richard D. James, primarily under the alias AFX. The series marked James's return to primarily analogue equipment following his computer-oriented programming work in the late 1990s. After their release, James "distilled" the 3½ hour, 42-track series into the 10-track compilation album Chosen Lords (2006), effectively his first full-length release since the 2001 album Drukqs.

<i>Syro</i> 2014 studio album by Aphex Twin

Syro (;) is the sixth studio album by Aphex Twin, the alias of British electronic musician Richard D. James, released on 19 September 2014 on Warp. It was James's first album under the name Aphex Twin since Drukqs (2001), and his first album of new material since the compilation Chosen Lords (2005).

Early life and education

James grew up in Cornwall (pictured: the cliffs at Land's End) Land's End, Cornwall, England.jpg
James grew up in Cornwall (pictured: the cliffs at Land's End)

James was born on 18 August 1971 [5] in Limerick. [6] In 1996, he claimed to have had a stillborn older brother, also named Richard, though this may have been fabricated. [7] [8] He grew up in Lanner, Cornwall, and attended Redruth School in nearby Redruth. [9] James said he liked growing up there, "being cut off from the city and the rest of the world". [9]

Limerick City in Munster, Ireland

Limerick is a city in County Limerick, Ireland. It is located in the Mid-West Region and is also part of the province of Munster. Limerick City and County Council is the local authority for the city. The city lies on the River Shannon, with the historic core of the city located on King's Island, which is bounded by the Shannon and the Abbey River. Limerick is also located at the head of the Shannon Estuary where the river widens before it flows into the Atlantic Ocean. With a population of 94,192, Limerick is the third most populous urban area in the state, and the fourth most populous city on the island of Ireland.

Lanner, Cornwall village and civil parish in west Cornwall

Lanner is a village and civil parish in west Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. It is situated on the A393 about 2 miles (3.2 km) south-east of Redruth.

Redruth School is a secondary school and sixth form college in Redruth, Cornwall, for 1,200 pupils aged 11 to 18. It was formed in 1976 by the merger of Redruth Grammar School and Tolgus Secondary School.

As a child, James enjoyed playing with the strings inside his family piano and disassembling tapes and tape recording equipment. [10] He took an early interest in electronics, and enjoyed modifying analogue synthesisers to create sounds. [10] According to James, at age 11 he won a magazine competition by producing sound on a Sinclair ZX81, a home computer with no sound hardware: "I played around with machine code and found some codes that retuned the TV signal so that it made this really weird noise when you turned the volume up". A blogger investigating this claim found that someone by a different name had won the competition, possibly James under a pseudonym. [11]

Electronics physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control of electrons in vacuum and matter

Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control of electrons in vacuum and matter.

Analog synthesizer synthesizer that uses analog circuits and analog computer techniques to generate sound electronically

An analogsynthesizer is a synthesizer that uses analog circuits and analog signals to generate sound electronically.

ZX81 home computer produced by Sinclair Research

The ZX81 is a home computer that was produced by Sinclair Research and manufactured in Dundee, Scotland by Timex Corporation. It was launched in the United Kingdom in March 1981 as the successor to Sinclair's ZX80 and was designed to be a low-cost introduction to home computing for the general public. It was hugely successful, and more than 1.5 million units were sold before it was discontinued. The ZX81 found commercial success in many other countries, notably the United States where it was initially sold as the ZX-81. Timex manufactured and distributed it under licence and enjoyed a substantial but brief boom in sales. Timex later produced its own versions of the ZX81 for the US market: the Timex Sinclair 1000 and Timex Sinclair 1500. Unauthorized clones of the ZX81 were produced in several countries.

James said his interest in sound and engineering developed before his interest in music. [10] He began making music aged 14, [9] partially as a refuge from the "bloody awful" Jesus and Mary Chain albums played by his sister. [12] Cornwall had few record shops, but a thriving nightlife in which acid house was popular. [9] As a teenager, James worked as a DJ at clubs and raves, and included his own tracks in his sets. [9] He studied at Cornwall College from 1988 to 1990 and graduated with a National Diploma in engineering. [5] According to one lecturer, he often wore headphones during practical lessons and had a "kind of mystique about him ... I think some of the other students were a bit in awe of him". [5]

Acid house is a subgenre of house music developed around the mid-1980s by DJs from Chicago. The style was defined primarily by the deep basslines and "squelching" sounds of the Roland TB-303 electronic synthesizer-sequencer. Acid house spread to the United Kingdom and continental Europe, where it was played by DJs in the acid house and later rave scenes. By the late 1980s, acid house had moved into the British mainstream, where it had some influence on pop and dance styles.

Cornwall College

The Cornwall College Group (TCCG) is a further education college situated on various sites throughout Cornwall and Devon, England, United Kingdom, with its main centre in St Austell. The college is a member of the Collab Group of high performing schools. It is part of the Combined Universities in Cornwall, and offers higher education courses to master's degree level under franchise from the University of Plymouth.

Career

1989–1992: Rephlex Records and first releases

In 1989, James befriended Grant Wilson-Claridge when they were working as DJs at a Cornwall club, Bowgie. [13] When Wilson-Claridge discovered that James was playing his own music, he suggested they create a record label to release it. They founded Rephlex Records in 1991. [9] The pair moved to London in 1992. [13]

James' first release as Aphex Twin was the 1991 12-inch EP Analogue Bubblebath on Mighty Force Records. The track "En Trance to Exit" was recorded with Tom Middleton. [14] The EP made the playlist of Kiss FM, an influential London radio station, which helped it become successful. [15]

From 1991 to 1993, James released two Analogue Bubblebath EPs (one without a band name on it, one as AFX) and an EP, Bradley's Beat , as Bradley Strider. Although he moved to London to take an electronics course at Kingston Polytechnic, he admitted to David Toop that his electronics studies were being evacuated as he pursued a career in the techno genre. [16]

After leaving the Polytechnic, James remained in London, releasing albums and EPs on Warp Records and other labels under aliases including AFX, Polygon Window, Power-Pill, Blue Calx and the Dice Man, appeared on compilations. Although he allegedly lived on the roundabout in Elephant and Castle, South London, during his early years in the city, he actually lived in a nearby unoccupied bank. [17] [16]

1992–1995: Selected Ambient Works, I Care Because You Do and gaining success

The first full-length Aphex Twin album, Selected Ambient Works 85–92 , comprising ambient music, was released in 1992 on R&S Records to critical acclaim. John Bush of Allmusic described it as a "watershed of ambient music". [2] In 2002, Rolling Stone wrote that Aphex Twin had "expanded way beyond the ambient music of Brian Eno by fusing lush soundscapes with oceanic beats and bass lines." [18] Pitchfork called it "among the most interesting music ever created with a keyboard and a computer". [19]

In 1992, James also released the EPs Digeridoo and Xylem Tube EP as Aphex Twin, the Pac-Man EP (an album of remixes of Pac-Man music) as Power-Pill, and two of his four Joyrex EPs ( Joyrex J4 EP and Joyrex J5 EP ) as Caustic Window. "Digeridoo" reached #55 on the UK Singles Chart, and was later described by Rolling Stone as foreshadowing drum and bass. [20] These early releases were on Rephlex Records, Mighty Force of Exeter and R&S Records of Belgium. [21]

In 1993, James released Analogue Bubblebath 3 ; the "On" EP and its accompanying remix EP; his second Bradley Strider EP, Bradley's Robot ; two more Caustic Window EPs; and his first releases on Warp: Surfing on Sine Waves and "Quoth EP", as Polygon Window. Warp released the second Aphex Twin album, Selected Ambient Works Volume II , in 1994, which explored a more ambient sound, inspired by lucid dreams and synesthesia. Other releases were a fourth Analogue Bubblebath, GAK (derived from early demos sent to Warp), and Classics , a compilation album.

For his 1995 album I Care Because You Do, composed between 1990 and 1994 in a range of styles, James used an image of his face for the album cover, which became a motif on his later releases. He commissioned Western classical-music composer Philip Glass to create an orchestral version of the I Care Because You Do track "Icct Hedral", which appeared on the Donkey Rhubarb EP. [22] In the same year, James released his Hangable Auto Bulb EP under the name AFX, which spearheaded the shortlived drill 'n' bass style. [23] [24]

1996–2000: Richard D. James Album, Come to Daddy and commercial height

Richard D. James Album , James' fourth studio album as Aphex Twin, was released on Warp in 1996. It features use of software synthesizers and unconventional beats. John Bush of AllMusic noted that this was James' first studio album to work with jungle music, noting that the album was "more extreme than virtually all jungle being made at the time" with beats that were layered over the slower melodies that characterized James' earlier ambient works. Pitchfork opined that the album was one of the "aggressive combinations of disparate electronic forms when it was released", with its "almost-brutal contrast between its elements creates a seal that's locked in freshness since way back in 1996." [25] The album garnered acclaim from music critics, and was named 40th in Pitchfork's "Top 100 Albums of the 1990s" list. [26] It was also placed at number 55 on NME's Top 100 Albums of All Time in 2003. [27]

James garnered attention the following year after the release of his Come to Daddy EP. The title track was conceived as a death metal parody. Accompanied with a successful music video directed by Chris Cunningham, James became disenchanted by its success: "This little idea that I had, which was a joke, turned into something huge. It wasn't right at all." [28] It was followed by "Windowlicker", a successful single promoted with another Cunningham music video, nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Video in 2000. [1] [28]

2000–2009: Drukqs, Analord series and the Tuss

Aphex Twin performing in 2007 Aphex Twin.jpg
Aphex Twin performing in 2007

In 2001 Aphex Twin released Drukqs , an experimental double album featuring abrasive, meticulous programming and computer-controlled piano influenced by Erik Satie and John Cage. The album polarized reviewers. James told interviewers he had accidentally left an MP3 player with new tracks on a plane, and had rushed the album release to preempt an internet leak. [29]

In 2001, James also released a short EP, 2 Remixes By AFX , with remixes of songs by 808 State and DJ Pierre. It also had an untitled third track, consisting of a SSTV image with high-pitched sounds which can be decoded to a viewable image with appropriate software (such as MultiMode for Macintosh or MMSSTV for Windows). In 2002, James was nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Male. [1]

In 2005, James released a series of vinyl EPs under the AFX name, Analord , created entirely with analogue equipment. These were followed in 2006 by a compilation album of Analord tracks, Chosen Lords. [30] In 2007, James released two records on Rephlex, Confederation Trough EP and Rushup Edge, under the alias the Tuss, Cornish slang for "erection". Media sources speculated about James's involvement, but his identity was not confirmed until 2014. [31] [32]

In 2010, James said he had completed six new albums, including a new version of the unreleased Melodies from Mars . [33] In September 2011, he performed a live tribute to the Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki; he performed his remix of Penderecki's "Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima" and a version of "Polymorphia". [34] The following month, he performed at the Paris Pitchfork Music Festival. [35]

2014–2015: Caustic Window, Syro, SoundCloud, and Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments pt2

Street art promoting the Syro album in New York City. Syro street art.jpg
Street art promoting the Syro album in New York City.

In 2014, a test pressing of a 1994 album recorded under James's pseudonym Caustic Window appeared for sale on Discogs. The album was once intended for sale on James's label Rephlex, but went unreleased. With the consent of James and Rehplex, fans organised a Kickstarter campaign to purchase the record and distribute copies. [36]

Syro, the first album released under the Aphex Twin name since Drukqs in 2001, was released by Warp on 23 September 2014. It was marketed by a teaser campaign including graffiti, a blimp flown over London, and an announcement made via a .onion address accessible through the deep web browser Tor. [37]

In November 2014, James released a set of 21 tracks, Modular Trax, on the audio platform SoundCloud. The tracks were later removed. [38] Over several months in 2015, James anonymously uploaded 269 demo tracks, some dating to the 1980s, to SoundCloud; [39] he said he had released the demos to relieve his family of the pressure to release his archives after he dies. [40]

On 23 January 2015, James released Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments pt2 , [41] created with robotic instruments including the Disklavier, a computer-controlled player piano. [42]

2016–present: Cheetah and Collapse EPs

On 8 July 2016, Aphex Twin released the Cheetah EP, backed by a music video for "CIRKLON3 [Колхозная mix]", the first official music video for an Aphex Twin track in 17 years. [43] On 17 December, James performed in Houston, Texas at the Day for Night festival, his first American appearance in 8 years. An untitled 12-inch vinyl was sold exclusively at the festival, containing two 10-minute tracks. [44] On 3 June 2017, James performed at the Field Day festival and released a limited edition EP, London 03.06.17 . [45] On 19 June 2017, a Michigan record store sold an exclusive Aphex Twin record comprising two tracks released on SoundCloud in 2015. [46] On July 27, Aphex Twin opened an online store with expanded versions of previous albums and new tracks. [47]

Aphex Twin released an EP, Collapse , on 14 September 2018. [48] The EP was announced on August 5 in a garbled press release written in broken English and visually distorted with the same Aphex Twin 3D graphic found in London, Turin and Hollywood. [49] A promotional video for the Collapse EP was going to be broadcast on Adult Swim, but it was cancelled after failing the Harding test. It was made available online instead and the official music video for the song "T69 Collapse" was uploaded to YouTube. [50] [51]

Musical style

In a September 1997 interview with Space Age Bachelor magazine, James said he composed ambient music at age 13 (one of these tracks, "i", appeared on the first Aphex Twin album Selected Ambient Works 85-92), had "over 100 hours" of unreleased music and had invented music-composition software consisting of algorithmic processes which automatically generated rhythm and melody. In the interview, he also claimed to have experienced synesthesia and incorporated lucid dreaming into his compositions. [52] In a 1993 interview with Simon Reynolds, James claimed voluntary sleep deprivation as an influence on his productions. [10]

In 2001, The Guardian described James' musical lineage as Stockhausen, John Cage, Kraftwerk, Brian Eno and Derrick May. [4] Acknowledging another influence, James released Music from the BBC Radiophonic Workshop : a compilation of music recorded by the pioneers of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop (including Delia Derbyshire) [53] on Rephlex. Although he has said "I don't really like rock & roll" he appreciates Led Zeppelin (as a source of "great breakbeats"), [54] and Pink Floyd (for their psychedelic music). [54]

James' Rephlex Records, which he co-owned with Grant Wilson-Claridge, coined the word "braindance" in 1991 to describe Aphex Twin's music. [31] [55] [56] According to the label: "Braindance is the genre that encompasses the best elements of all genres, e.g. traditional, classical, electronic music, popular, modern, industrial, ambient, hip-hop, electro, house, techno, breakbeat, hardcore, ragga, garage, drum and bass, etc." [57] In a review of Astrobotnia's Parts 1, 2 & 3 Rephlex release, a Pitchfork writer said in 2002:

Intelligent dance music (IDM) is mentioned on the home page of the Intelligent Dance Music (IDM) mailing list (created in August 1993) about the music of Aphex Twin and the Artificial Intelligence Series released by Warp Records. [59] The series features James' recordings as Polygon Window and early productions from artists including Autechre, Black Dog, Richie Hawtin's FUSE project and Speedy J. The term spread to the United States and internet message boards. James responded to the IDM term in a 1997 interview:

Image and pseudonyms

James' face, grinning or distorted, is a theme of his album covers, music videos and songs. According to him, it began as a response to techno producers who concealed their identities:

The cover of ...I Care Because You Do features a self-portrait painted by James, and that of Richard D. James Album has a close-up photograph. His face is superimposed on the bodies of other people in the music videos for "Come to Daddy" and "Windowlicker". Near the end of the second track of the "Windowlicker" single (known as "Equation"), a photo of James' face is a steganogram which is revealed as a spectrogram. [60] Another image of James and collaborator Tom Jenkinson is embedded (in SSTV format) with text in the third track of 2 Remixes by AFX, "Bonus High Frequency Sounds". He has used his own photography for some releases, including the album sleeve for Selected Ambient Works Volume II .

James has recorded as AFX, Blue Calx, Bradley Strider, The Universal Indicator, Brian Tregaskin, Caustic Window, The, Smojphace, GAK, Karen Tregaskin, Martin Tressider, PBoD (Phonic Boy on Dope), Polygon Window, Power-Pill, Q-Chastic, Dice Man, The Tuss, and Soit-P.P. [61] In a 1997 interview, James commented on the difference between works released under different names, saying "There's really no big theory. It's just things that I feel right in doing at the time and I really don't know why. I select songs for certain things and I just do it. I don't know what it means". [62]

In a 2001 interview, Richard D. James commented on the ambiguous nature of his own releases and the speculation that surrounds many anonymous artists working in electronica: "a lot of people think everything electronic is mine. I get credited for so many things, it's incredible. I'm practically everyone, I reckon—everyone and nobody". [28]

Influence and legacy

Writing in The Guardian in 2001, journalist Paul Lester described James as "the most inventive and influential figure in contemporary electronic music". [4] AllMusic's John Bush wrote that, "unlike most artists who emerged from the '90s techno scene, James established himself as a genuine personality, known for his cheeky grin and nightmare-inducing music videos as much as his groundbreaking albums and EPs," which helped to "expand his audience from ravers and critics to rock fans, with numerous non-electronic musicians citing him as an inspiration". [2]

In 2007, Thomas Bangalter of Daft Punk cited Aphex Twin (particularly "Windowlicker") as an influence for the duo's 2001 album Discovery . Bangalter said he liked it because "It wasn't a big club beat, but it also wasn't a laid back, quiet one.". [63]

In 2013, Thom Yorke of Radiohead named Aphex Twin as his biggest influence, saying: "He burns a heavy shadow ... Aphex opened up another world that didn't involve my fucking electric guitar ... I hated all the music that was around Radiohead at the time, it was completely fucking meaningless. I hated the Britpop thing and what was happening in America, but Aphex was totally beautiful, and he's kind of my age too." [64] In 2002, asked if he would tour with Radiohead, James said "I wouldn't play with them since I don't like them". [54]

Mike Edwards of Jesus Jones, speaking at the release of Perverse in early 1993, described James as an influence. [65]

His 1994 song "#5" from Selected Ambient Works Volume II was slowed down and made into the song "City of Lost Angels". This version was featured in the 1997 game Fallout from Interplay Entertainment.[ citation needed ]

In 2005, Alarm Will Sound released Acoustica: Alarm Will Sound Performs Aphex Twin , acoustic arrangements of James' electronic tracks.

The London Sinfonietta performed arrangements of Aphex Twin songs in 2006. [66]

Former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante said that Aphex Twin is "the best thing since sliced bread", and his Outsides EP and PBX Funicular Intaglio Zone are examples of James' influence.

Minimalist composer Steve Reich, who James remixed for his "Pendulum Music" piece, has praised James and commended his work. [67]

James premiered new music with Radiohead guitarist-composer Jonny Greenwood in a 2011 collaboration with Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki. [68]

Animator David Firth has much of his work soundtracked by Aphex Twin. [69]

In 2012, a Fact magazine review of the 100 best albums of the 1990s listed the LP Selected Ambient Works 85–92 in No.1 position. [70]

In June 2014, Answer Code Request (Patrick Gräser) called James "one producer who always inspires" him in the "Influences" section of the Ransom Note website. Gräser used the Aphex Twin song "Analogue Bubblebath 1" to exemplify James' influence: "I guess being obsessed with your own music is what makes him that brilliant." [71]

In June 2014, Wes Borland of Limp Bizkit stated "Cliffs" or possibly "Rhubarb" from Selected Ambient Works II as being the song he would listen to for the rest of his life if he had to pick one. [72]

In December 2015, Skrillex briefly mentioned how "some of his favourite music pieces of all time are by Aphex Twin". [73]

Personal life

In the mid-1990s, James bought a former bank in the Elephant & Castle area of London, where he claimed to live in a converted vault. [7] He also claimed mischievously in a 2001 interview to have bought the steel structure in the centre of the roundabout, though this is in fact the Michael Faraday Memorial which houses an electricity substation for the London Underground. [17] In the 1990s, James bought a 1950's-era Daimler Ferret Mark 3 "tank" (technically an armoured car), complete with working machine gun, which he would drive around town while living in Cornwall in lieu of a car. He stated that it "pisses over virtual reality or any computer game I've ever played." [74] [7] He also claimed to have bought a submarine. [4]

In a 2010 interview with Fact , James revealed that he was living in Scotland at the time after relocating from London—according to FACT, he "extolled the virtues" of his new residential location. [75] As of 2014, he lives in Scotland with his two sons—from his first marriage [3] —and his second wife, a Russian art student. [76] According to James, his sons both make music. [3]

Awards

YearAwardsCategoryWorkResult
1998 MTV Video Music Awards Best Special Effects "Come to Daddy"Nominated
D&AD Awards Pop Promo Video with a budget over £40.000Yellow Pencil
DirectionYellow Pencil
MTV Europe Music Awards Best Video Nominated
1999"Windowlicker"Nominated
Prix Ars Electronica Digital MusicHimselfWon
Online Music Awards Best Electronic Fansite [77] Nominated
2000 Brit Awards Best British Video "Windowlicker"Nominated
D&AD Awards DirectionYellow Pencil
EditingYellow Pencil
NME Awards Single of the YearWon
Best Dance ActHimselfNominated
2002Nominated
Brit Awards British Male Solo Artist Nominated
Shortlist Music Prize Album of the Year Drukqs Nominated
2005Antville Music Video AwardsBest Video"Rubber Johnny"Nominated
2014Rober Awards Music PollBest Male ArtistHimselfNominated
Comeback of the YearNominated
Best ElectronicaWon
2015 Grammy Awards Best Dance/Electronica Album Syro Won
International Dance Music Awards Best Full Length Studio RecordingNominated
Mercury Prize Album of the YearNominated
A2IM Libera AwardsNominated
Creative Packaging AwardWon
Marketing GeniusSyro album release campaignNominated
2016 Brit Awards British Male Solo Artist HimselfNominated
2018UK Video Music AwardsBest Dance Video"T69 Collapse"Nominated
Best Visual Effects in a VideoNominated
Best Animation in a VideoNominated
2019 Classic Pop Reader Awards Video of the YearPending
Brit Awards British Male Solo Artist HimselfNominated

Discography

Studio albums as Aphex Twin

See also

Related Research Articles

<i>...I Care Because You Do</i> 1995 studio album by Aphex Twin

...I Care Because You Do is the third studio album by electronic musician Richard D. James under the alias Aphex Twin, released on 24 April 1995. The album contains tracks recorded between 1990 and 1994, and marked James's return to a percussive sound following the largely beatless Selected Ambient Works Volume II (1994). The cover artwork is a self-portrait by James.

<i>Richard D. James Album</i> 1996 studio album by Aphex Twin

Richard D. James Album is the self-titled fourth studio album by British electronic musician Richard D. James, under his pseudonym Aphex Twin. In the United Kingdom, the album was released on 4 November 1996 through Warp. In the United States, it was released on 28 January 1997 by Sire Records, with the Girl/Boy EP included as bonus tracks. A reissue on vinyl was released on 18 September 2012.

Windowlicker single by Richard D. James under the pseudonym Aphex Twin

"Windowlicker" is a song by English electronic musician Aphex Twin, released on 22 March 1999 as a single by Warp Records. The artwork for the single was created by Chris Cunningham, with additional work by The Designers Republic. Cunningham also directed the song's music video, which was nominated for the Brit Award for Best British Video.

<i>Selected Ambient Works Volume II</i> 1994 studio album by Aphex Twin

Selected Ambient Works Volume II is the second studio album by Aphex Twin, the pseudonym of British electronic musician Richard D. James. It was released by Warp in March 1994. Billed as a follow-up to James' debut, Selected Ambient Works 85–92, the album differs in sound by being largely beatless ambient music. James claimed that it was inspired by lucid dreaming, and likened the music to "standing in a power station on acid."

<i>26 Mixes for Cash</i> 2003 compilation album by Aphex Twin

26 Mixes for Cash is a compilation album of remixes produced by Richard D. James for various artists, plus four original tracks. It was released on 24 March 2003 by Warp Records. 26 Mixes for Cash was released on CD only, although a vinyl promotional disc entitled 2 Mixes on a 12" For Cash, featuring the two Aphex Twin originals exclusive to this compilation, was released in limited quantities in Japan only.

<i>Classics</i> (Aphex Twin album) 1994 compilation album by Aphex Twin

Classics is an electronic music compilation album by Richard D. James, more commonly known by his pseudonym of Aphex Twin. The album was released in December 1994.

<i>Chosen Lords</i> 2006 compilation album by AFX / Aphex Twin

Chosen Lords is a compilation album by Richard D. James, released under the aliases AFX and Aphex Twin. It is a CD compilation of selected tracks previously released on the vinyl-only Analord series. Limited edition copies distributed with a poster were offered on Warpmart to encourage pre-ordering.

Seefeel band that plays techno

Seefeel are a British post-rock band formed in the early 1990s by Mark Clifford, Daren Seymour (bass), Justin Fletcher (drums), and Sarah Peacock. Bridging the guitar-based dream pop and shoegaze scenes with the production techniques of ambient techno and electronica, they gained recognition for their 1993 debut EP More Like Space and first album Quique, both on the British independent label Too Pure. The band signed with electronic label Warp Records in 1994, also releasing an album on Rephlex in 1996. Following several subsequent releases, Seefeel went on an extended hiatus in 1997.

<i>Smojphace</i> 2003 EP by AFX

The Smojphace EP is a 2003 EP by electronic music artist Richard D. James under one of his commonly known aliases, AFX. The EP was released through MEN Records, a Rephlex Records sublabel.

Richard D. James discography discography

The following is the known discography of Richard D. James.

<i>Selected Ambient Works 85–92</i> 1992 studio album by Aphex Twin

Selected Ambient Works 85–92 is the debut studio album by Aphex Twin, the pseudonym of British electronic musician Richard D. James. It was released as a very limited import in November 1992 by Apollo Records, a subsidiary of Belgian label R&S Records, and later widely in February 1993. The album features tracks recorded onto cassette reputedly dating as far back as 1985, when James was fourteen years old. An analogue remaster was released in 2006, and a digital remaster in 2008.

Avril 14th

"Avril 14th" is an instrumental by the electronic artist Richard D James under his name Aphex Twin, released on the 2001 album Drukqs.

minipops 67 (120.2) single by Richard D. James under the pseudonym Aphex Twin

"minipops 67 [120.2]" is a song by the English electronic musician Richard D James, credited under the pseudonym Aphex Twin. It is the opening track and lead single from Aphex Twin's sixth studio album, Syro (2014).

<i>Orphaned Deejay Selek 2006–08</i> 2015 EP by AFX

Orphaned Deejay Selek 2006–08 is an EP by Richard D. James, released under his AFX moniker, the first EP under that alias since 2005's Analord. It was announced by Warp Records on 2 July 2015, with a listing appearing on Bleep.com on the same day. An announcement for the EP also appeared on the Aphex Twin Twitter account on that date. Along with Warp Records' announcement, "serge fenix Rendered 2", the first track on the EP, was made available for streaming on SoundCloud. The EP was re-released with extra tracks on James' Bleep Store on 20 July 2017.

<i>Collapse</i> (EP) 2018 EP by Aphex Twin

Collapse is an extended play by British electronic musician Richard D. James under the pseudonym Aphex Twin. It was released on 14 September 2018 on Warp. The extended play received universal acclaim from music critics, who praised James for returning to his signature "Aphex Twin" sound.

References

  1. 1 2 3 "Brits Awards – Aphex Twin". Archived from the original on 5 August 2014. Retrieved 11 November 2014.
  2. 1 2 3 4 John Bush. "Aphex Twin | Biography & History". AllMusic . Retrieved 9 July 2016.
  3. 1 2 3 Vozick-Levinson, Simon. "Aphex Twin on New 'Syro' LP: 'I'm Feeling Really Horny About It – and Very Smug'". Rolling Stone . Retrieved 5 June 2017.
  4. 1 2 3 4 5 Lester, Paul (5 October 2001). "Tank boy". The Guardian . London. Archived from the original on 10 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  5. 1 2 3 Murray, Janet (12 June 2007). "College days". The Guardian . London. Archived from the original on 26 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  6. "The Aphex Twin has spoken… | On The Record". www.irishtimes.com. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  7. 1 2 3 "Aphex Twin: 10 strange myths and the truth behind them". Fact . Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  8. Warren, Emma (19 March 2006). "Aphex twin, Chosen Lords". The Observer. ISSN   0029-7712 . Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  9. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "The Quietus | Opinion | The Quietus Essay | The Wheal Thing: Aphex Twin's Alternative Cornish Language". The Quietus. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  10. 1 2 3 4 Reynolds, Simon. "A Classic Aphex Twin Interview. Simon Reynolds Talks To Richard D. James". The Quietus . Retrieved 26 March 2018.
  11. "10 strange Aphex Twin myths and the truth behind them". FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music. 14 April 2017. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  12. Stubbs, David (2018). Future Sounds: The Srory of Electronic Music from Stockhausen to Skrillex. Faber & Faber. Retrieved 8 February 2019.
  13. 1 2 "Rephlex Records: Recalling Aphex Twin & Grant Wilson-Claridge's label". Orb Mag. 7 May 2018. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  14. Middleton, Benjamin (30 October 1992). "~~ rephlex ~~ aphex ~~ drn ~~". alt.rave. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  15. Turenne, Martin (April 2003). "Aphex Twin – The Contrarian". Exclaim! . Archived from the original on 3 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  16. 1 2 Toop, David (March 1994). "Lost in space". The Face . Archived from the original on 3 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  17. 1 2 O'Connell, John (October 2001). "Untitled". The Face . EMAP. Archived from the original on 15 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  18. Blashill, Pat (19 November 2002). "Selected Ambient Works 85–92". Rolling Stone . Archived from the original on 12 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  19. Pecoraro, David (20 February 2002). "Selected Ambient Works 85–92". Pitchfork . Archived from the original on 20 September 2008. Retrieved 19 October 2008.
  20. "Biography". The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll. 2001. Archived from the original on 22 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  21. Hobbs, Mary Anne (6 December 2005). "tracklisting". BBC. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  22. "The Aphex Twin Community / Learn / Interviews & Articles / Eponymous Rex Interview". Aphextwin.nu. Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  23. "Drill'n'bass | Music Highlights". AllMusic . Retrieved 9 July 2016.
  24. Simon Reynolds. Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture. Soft Skull Press, 2012.
  25. Carr, Eric (17 November 2003). "Staff Lists: Top 100 Albums of the 1990s". Pitchfork. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  26. "Top 100 Albums of the 1990s" . Retrieved 16 January 2009.
  27. "2003 NME 's 100 Best Albums Of All Time" . Retrieved 30 September 2017.
  28. 1 2 3 "Index Magazine – Richard D James". Index Magazine. 14 January 2001. Retrieved 19 October 2011.
  29. "Synths, drukqs and rock'n'roll". The Sydney Morning Herald . 9 January 2004. Archived from the original on 12 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  30. "AFX: Chosen Lords". Pitchfork. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
  31. 1 2 Pattison, Louis (26 May 2007). "Dancing in the dark". The Guardian . London. Archived from the original on 18 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  32. "Selected Aughties Works: The 5 Best Tracks From Aphex Twin's Quiet Period". Pitchfork. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
  33. "Aphex Twin Says He's Got Six Albums Completed | News". Pitchfork. 29 October 2010. Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  34. Carrie Batten (12 September 2011). "Video: New Compositions From Aphex Twin and Jonny Greenwood". Pitchfork. Retrieved 17 August 2014.
  35. "Photos: Pitchfork Music Festival Paris [Friday]". Pitchfork. 29 October 2011. Retrieved 17 August 2014.
  36. "Caustic Window: Caustic Window LP". Pitchfork. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
  37. Bowe, Miles (18 August 2014). "Aphex Twin Announces New Album SYRO Via Deep Web". Stereogum . Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  38. "Aphex Twin Gives Away 21-Track Modular Synth Album Plus a Bundle of Demos and Studio Experiments". Fact. Retrieved 10 November 2014.
  39. music, Guardian (8 May 2015). "Aphex Twin archive removed from SoundCloud". The Guardian. ISSN   0261-3077 . Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  40. "Cover story: Aphex Twin's mask collapses". Crack Magazine. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  41. "Aphex Twin Announces Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments pt2 EP". Fact Mag. Retrieved 20 January 2015.
  42. "If This Aphex Twin Archive Is Fake, We Don't Want to Know What Real Is". Pitchfork. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  43. "Watch Aphex Twin's First Music Video in 17 Years". Rolling Stone.
  44. Cosores, Philip (17 December 2016). "Aphex Twin releases surprise 12-inch vinyl at Day For Night Festival". Consequence of Sound . Retrieved 6 May 2017.
  45. NTS (4 June 2017). "Aphex Twin Live at Field Day 2017 (alt. audio)". YouTube.
  46. "New Aphex Twin record on sale at Todd Osborn's Technical Equipment Supply shop in Michigan". Resident Advisor. Retrieved 20 June 2017.
  47. "Aphex Twin Launches New Streaming Site With Rarities, Unreleased Tracks, More". Pitchfork. Retrieved 24 April 2019.
  48. "Warp Records on Twitter". Twitter . Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  49. "Warp Records on Twitter: "..."". Twitter . Retrieved 5 August 2018.
  50. "Aphex Twin's TV premiere cancelled after failing epilepsy test". NME. Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  51. "Aphex Twin – T69 Collapse – YouTube". YouTube . Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  52. Anderson, Don (1999). "Aphex Twin: Mad Musician or Investment Banker?". Space Age Bachelor. Retrieved 10 March 2011.
  53. Sweet, Matthew (17 March 2002). "Queen of the wired frontier". The Observer . London. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  54. 1 2 3 Perez, Arturo (16 March 2002). "Interview: Aphex Twin". Kludge Magazine . Archived from the original on 1 May 2009. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  55. "Rephlex – the Record Label". h2g2 . 28 August 2002. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  56. "The Braindance Coincidence". The Milk Factory. May 2001. Archived from the original on 13 March 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  57. "what is braindance?". rephlex.com. Archived from the original on 2 March 2001. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  58. Cooper, Paul (4 October 2002). "Astrobotnia Parts 1, 2 & 3". Pitchfork . Archived from the original on 7 April 2008. Retrieved 16 April 2008.
  59. Brian R (18 June 2014). "The Intelligent Dance Music Mailing List – Hosted by Hyperreal.org". Hyperreal.org. Retrieved 18 June 2014.
  60. "The Aphex Face". bastwood.com. Archived from the original on 17 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  61. "Richard D. James". Richard D. James on Discogs. Discogs. 2014. Retrieved 18 June 2014.
  62. "Daft Punk: Voyage of Discovery". MTV Networks. Retrieved 13 April 2014.
  63. "Splitting Atoms". Dazed. February 2013.
  64. Reid, Graham (10 May 2010). "MIKE EDWARDS OF JESUS JONES INTERVIEWED (1993): Right here, right now . . . back then". Elsewhere. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
  65. Llewellyn, Kati; Solarski, Matthew (13 September 2006). "London Sinfonietta Tackles Aphex Twin, Squarepusher". Pitchfork . Archived from the original on 21 June 2008. Retrieved 14 June 2008.
  66. Lucy Jones (23 October 2014). "Steve Reich Interview: On Radiohead, Aphex Twin And 'The Rite Of Spring'". NME.
  67. Robbins, Winston (11 September 2011). "Video: Jonny Greenwood, Aphex Twin perform alongside Krzysztof Penderecki". Consequence of Sound . Retrieved 12 September 2011.
  68. "Re: Salad Fingers". Semantikon.com. Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  69. "The 100 Best Albums of the 1990s – FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music". Factmag.com. 3 September 2012. Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  70. Answer Code Request. "Influences". The Ransom Note. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  71. "Kerrang! Sonisphere 2014 Podcast: Wes Borland – YouTube" . Retrieved 21 August 2014 via YouTube.
  72. Answer Code Request. "I stopped doing interviews because of The Guardian". The Guardian.
  73. James, Richard D. (1995). "Life as a Tank Boy". Details Magazine. Retrieved 17 September 2018.
  74. "APHEX TWIN: "I'VE GOT SIX ALBUMS COMPLETED"". FACT. 28 October 2010. Retrieved 17 August 2014.
  75. Spex October 2014, p. 26: Aphex Twin: Ein Backup für Millionen (German interview)
  76. https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/alt.fan.frank-zappa/DDcmNdJW_ig