Robotaki’s “Los Angeles” and “Quasar” already feel infinite
“I just want to keep on feeling.”
If there’s one lyric that stands out the most on the Canadian DJ Robotaki (Preston Chin)’s latest ethereal double release, “Los Angeles”/”Quasar,” it’s this. Feeling, which defines the lustrous appeal of many popular EDM acts, is the name of the game… and Chin happens to be a master at conjuring up vastly moving emotional projects with every release. On last year’s excellently groovy Science EP, it was apparent that throwback hip-hop and EDM was a crossover that warranted a visit to the dancefloor. On this year’s Anachronism EP, Chin stepped back and chose future funk/lo-fi details to cultivate a laidback, cruising feeling. But on “Los Angeles” and “Quasar,” the mood of choice is awe-inspiring–casting feelings that seem timeless and expansive rather than simply in the moment.
Take “Los Angeles,” Chin’s duet with Los Angeles-based vocalist Maiah Manser, for example. Forgoing the usual sunny vibe of Los Angeles for hazy dreaminess, “Los Angeles” in Chin’s mind is starry and sprawling–much like the city itself. In a press release, he reveals that “Los Angeles” is “about hope for a theoretical place where we all live forever and don’t have to worry about the expectations of temporary life. In other words, a place where we don’t feel the need to find self-purpose against the clock.” Overcrowded, rent-skyrocketing, and overstressed Los Angeles might not completely match up with the song’s intentions, but Chin’s take on the city is hopeful. Although it may be a bit hard to lyrically decipher the airy vocal talents of Maiah amongst the all-encompassing night-streaked beat, dreams still live on in the song’s message.
Perhaps more interesting is “Quasar,” which was inspired by none other than those mysterious, supermassive pulsating energy black holes in space. Tumultuous, chaotic, and building to a white-hot glitchy drop, “Quasar” is head-spinning. In the span of only four minutes, “Quasar” somehow feels infinite. Chin sets his sights to the greater beyond, giving us a glimpse of the musician’s imaginative take on the universe. Put together, “Los Angeles” and “Quasar” sets the stage for boundless possibilities–giving us much to look forward to when the musician’s debut album will be released in 2020.
“Los Angeles” and “Quasar” are out now via Foreign Family Collective.
Li-Wei Chu is the chief editor of From the Intercom. When he’s not editing drafts and searching for new artists to cover for the website, he loves watching cult films, cooking, and listening to his ever-growing collection of vinyl records. You can follow him on LetterBoxd and make fun of his taste in movies here!