President Hoodie sent me a copy of Robotprins’ new release through CheapBeats. I really respect Hoodie’s taste in music, and that alone would normally be enough to catch my attention. However, Robotprins is someone I had never heard of before. All I had to go on from was the bright cover art, with its happy blonde dude riding a snowmobile with a snowy palace in the background. Still, I’m all about finding hidden gem artists,
so the mystery was enough to spark my interest. I love digging through an unknown artists’ records to see how, what, and why they create. I also hope that these reviews encourage them to keep doing what they love.
I hit play on CheapBeats’ bandcamp, and…BAM! My ears heard this psychotic, nostalgic mix of instrumentation similar to what what we grew up with with NES/SNES releases. I know that it’s common for people to automatically associate music made from computer/platform/handheld chips as game music, despite there being no game to actually score to, but you can just tell that this release is a straight-up story about someone on an adventure, their life, their energy, their surroundings. Music you can picture progressive metal musicians playing live; every waveform in his mix has a chance to show
virtuosity, but also gives space for the next to play a solo. This album has got everything from intense progressive tracks to sweet, innocent themes that portray that Robotprins is a protagonist.
‘Fighting Chilly with Chili’ has got everything from strong melodies that are harmonized, to perfected pitch control. Mastering white noise as percussion plays a key element; noise can be used interestingly to create certain depth to a mix, and Robotprins was able to pair it and use it as its own percussion tool. The melody and harmony are hard panned left and right, leaving space for the bass to be used as a lead instrument, as well. The drums keep a steady rock beat for the majority of the track and briefly changes to a blastbeat to add intensity midway, which kept my attention and added a nice change to the song. This type of music focuses very much on melody, so it’s refreshing to hear an artist who can add interesting rhythmic fragments. It reminded me fondly of the Megaman X soundtrack.
I hit the track ‘Yeti’ and I’m totally distracted from everything that comes along with life and stress, and I grabbed my guitar to play along. This track made me realize that first and foremost, while music and audio is my career, it is fun, and I remembered why I started pursuing my sound design career to begin with. ‘Yeti’ is so good, that I can’t help but start thinking about covering this track. I love learning music that’s a challenge, and this track contains heavy rhythm, strong leads, and I start thinking of how powerful it would sound with the lower octaves found in an 8-string guitar. Suddenly, it’s like I’m 15 again and digging into metal and shred guitarists’ record releases.
So, it’s time to dig into who this guy is. The music of Robotprins is created by chip artist Philip Lindén, who hails from Sweden and is currently residing in Sendai, Japan. Philip has created concept albums around the story, which is the same name as his artist name, written by his cousin, Alexander Lidé, of a half human – half robot (who also happens to be a prince, whose parents were killed in spite by the evil ruler Odman’s army in order to re-ignite a war between robot and humankind). Robotprins was on a mission to defeat Odman restore peace between humans and robots. This EP takes place after Odman’s defeat, when Robotprins heads north to celebrate relaxation and bumps into new trouble and adventures.
I love writing reviews for this blog; this community is tight-knit and you guys have given me the opportunity to come across something unique and familiar. Anyone who works with music can sometimes get exhausted with it; there may be times where you don’t want to work on it, where you have writer’s block, when you can’t seem to find anything new to listen to. However, listening to ‘Frosty Frolic’ will rejuvenate your mind and push you back to being working on music just for the sheer joy of it.
I hope you all check out this release. It’s sick!
Till next month,
Music: Philip Lindén
Mixing: Jun Kudo
Artworks: Yuta Toyoi and Philip Lindén