Famous Synesthetes

Richard D. James/Aphex Twin

Richard D. James aka Aphex Twin

Richard D. James © Jon Stich 2012

Richard D. James, AKA Aphex Twin, was born in 1971 in Ireland and raised in Cornwall, England. James’s unique type of music, known as both “intelligent techno” and “ambient techno” was one of the most inventive types of music of the 90s. As a child, however, he wasn’t interested in music but more interested in making noises and banging on different items. James is often considered to be music’s most experimental artist. In addition to his raw and experimental style, James has also created his own musical software and algorithms. While he has no plans to ever sell the software, he still uses it today. Throughout his career, James has collaborated with several other techno artists, including: Moby, Chris Cunningham, and DJ Colin Dale. James is one of few techno artists to have created his own unique sound and his work tends to revolve around recurring ideas and motifs, often influenced by lucid dreaming (Anderson, 1999). In interviews with The Wire and other magazines and blogs, James has explained that his lucid dreaming and synesthesia inspired the songs on his 1994 release, Selected Ambient Works Volume II. In 1991, he founded the label Rephlex Records, recording and producing several other esoteric artists.

 

Sources:

Anderson, D. (1999). Aphex Twin: Mad musician or investment banker? Space Age Bachelor. Retrieved from http://www.space-age-bachelor.com/archives/aphex-twin.

Larkin, C. (2006). Aphex Twin. In The encyclopedia of popular music (4th ed.). New York: Muze.

Lester, P. (2001, October 4). Tank Boy. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/culture/2001/oct/05/artsfeatures3.