WILD Profile: Robotaki, Between Music and McGill

Who: Preston Chin
Where he was born: Toronto (Torontonian through and through)
Where he lives now: Montréal, Québec, completing a Master’s Thesis in Anatomy and Cell Biology at McGill University
What he does: It probably goes without saying that I don’t often find overt similarities between my academic pursuits and musical hobbies, but it’s definitely hammered a point in that proper time management is essential for everything.


What he’s been up to lately:
I’ve been preparing my second EP, which should be out at the end of the year on the Heavy Disco label. It features 3 completely different tracks and will be backed with a remix from Blende (and some others not announced yet!) I’m very happy with the way it’s coming together at the moment and am super excited to see how it’s received when it’s out.

What good energy means to him:
Good energy is staying positive, healthy, and open-minded.

His most striking moment:
My most striking moment was during my transition to college when I had a realization that music production was something I wanted to keep doing. It’s funny because despite spending hours on hours in my school’s music lab after school making god awful tunes, I didn’t think it would have such an impact on my life. I really owe it to my parents for introducing me to music at an early age.

What cracks him up:
Carlos Boozer’s celebratory fist pump after sinking a shot.

What he considers a fashion faux-pas:
Montréal is a pretty liberal-minded city, but luckily it seems that everyone still think socks and sandals are atrocious.

If he was a sound, that sound would probably be:
A raw and simple brass synth coming from my baby, Korg Trident MKI. Nothing beats it.

If he could see broad social disruption in one aspect, it would be:
I think there are too many people who listen to music out there for reasons other than themselves. I guess it would follow that there are too few truly ‘active’ listeners. To me, this situation has sort of shaped a world for producers which forces them to rely too heavily on knowing what’s smart to release instead of what’s pleasing to them. It’s difficult for producers to have musical/creative integrity nowadays, myself included.

What movement he would like to start:
I’d like to see the resurgence of aleatory in the process of creating a track. To explain, I’ve had the TV playing in the background a lot of the times I produce. On rare occasion, I’d hear random notes or melodies that pop out from whatever is playing on the tele and it would work with what I was producing at the time. Totally unorthodox and kind of silly, but it works beautifully sometimes!

What is the first record you bought with your own money?
I suppose the first record I’ve officially bought with my own money wasn’t really a sole record. There was a CD that came with Silent Hill 3 for PS2 which had the game’s OST on it. I can hear those thoughts and yes, I am a total geek haha. If you haven’t heard any of the tracks yet, I strongly encourage you to check them out and then play the game. I’ve had my musical tastes influenced heavily by what my siblings listened to when I was younger and also the video games I played. Other video game soundtracks you should check out if you haven’t already: Secret of Evermore, Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, Fester’s Quest, Plok, Super Mario Galaxy, Dragon Quest VIII, Journey.

Heavy rotation:
I have ridiculous attention deficit when it comes to listening to music, but if I’m to do this by plays, they’re: Moods’ “Arrived”, Souls of Mischief’s “93’ til Infinity”, Massive Attack’s “Future Proof”, The M Machine’s remix of “Lucid Dreams”, Ryan Hemsworth’s “Against A Wall”, Eumig and Chinon’s remix of 1020 Trickery Lane, Zero 7‘s “End Theme”, Fehrplay’s “Monte”, RAC’s brilliant EP “Don’t Talk To”, DJ Krush’s “Transition”, Siriusmo’s ridiculously awesome album “Enthusiast”, all things with The Twelves, and everything Röyksopp. Just today, I’ve been listening to “Hotel California” on repeat for some reason – who doesn’t love that simply amazing melodic verse?

Where he goes to be alone:
There’s this special place at night that someone showed me in Montréal right at the intersection of Avenue des Pins and du Parc. Got a beautiful view of Mont Royale, plenty of street lamps, open space to see the stars, grass to lie on, a rock wall to climb. The ultimate place to think.

With whom he would like most to go on a tête à tête:
I’ve always wanted to have a chat with Moritz Friedrich aka Siriusmo. This guy is a serious mystery but is consistently coming out with creatively limitless gems. How does he do it?!

Whom he considers a style icon:
Samuel L. Jackson in a reverse beret.

Robotaki’s WILD Wish:
My WILD wish would be to have a (financially feasible) excuse to travel the world, become immersed in different cultures, and eat at the best places around the globe. Seriously, there’s nothing more gratifying in my mind. I’m thoroughly convinced that Anthony Bourdain is living the life right now.


Follow Preston on Facebook, Twitter, and Soundcloud

text by: Michelle Chung

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