My Robot Friend is Your Robot Friend. According to his own words, he’s a sexy model type robot. I first stumbled – and accidentally so – on one of the remixes done for him by Solvent, another civil rights’ activist, righteously fighting in the analogue synthesisers’ field. Both share nothing but sheer enthusiasm for technology and one-man come together in a friendly conversation.
Clock DVA were once exploring the so-called “man-amplified” concept of modern technology applied to man – only with a much darker twist. While this side of “man-amplified”, My Robot Friend is funnily cynical and black-humourous, still after exposing yourself to any of his melodies, the sun continues to shine and the mood is always blowing roofs in cheerful’s favour. Solvent’s remix for one of My Robot Friend’s still current affairs, the single “Waiting” – which features a gorgeous lead vocal by Alison Moyet – was truly amazing and made me reach deeper into his robotic realm.
The treasures hidden there date back to early 2000s with some of the wittiest and most uncompromising pop-core stuff. When asking him to contribute with some unreleased masterpiece of his, My Robot Friend pointed to his cover of a Jeffrey Lewis song, “Last Time I Did Acid I Went Insane” – originally released by Rough Trade in 2001. In stark contrast to the acoustic original, this (acid) rendition adds extra energy flashes of sheer techno-genius. Your body won’t mind moving all over the place. The exercise is welcome. Healthy. Be reborn. This is acid.
It’s a wild cartoon that is My Robot Friend, with adult content – in one of his rare interviews (around 2009), My Robot Friend expresses interest in sexual intercourse and melody to make a perfect match. With a selection of countless voice presets for every occasion, My Robot Friend presents this amazing game of plug and play – a perfect machine with longlasting battery, teaching you how to dance and sing… and have sex (with).
Back in 2004, My Robot Friend’s debut album “Hot Action!” is now incredibly hard to track down a solid copy – all the way through to “Soft-core” (his still-current full-length album) he created a wide pallette of sounds, that range from pixels to radio-friendly tune. “Robot High School”, originally the opener to “Soft-core”, was at one point, remixed to stunning effect, by In Digital Form. Amazing story of social automation with a killer lyrics sheet – “I went away on a government vacation, wasn’t best time that I ever had; ship me back home from a secret location, my legs came back later in a plastic bag…” / “Memorized the rules and learned to behave, but when I got to school I forgot; so they put me ina special classroom, where everybody is a robot.”
One of my other favourites is undoubtedly “Sex Machine”, a piece which, if unheard easily confuses, as if being a cover of a James Brown standard. However, it is by all means a My Robot Friend standard, head to toe and back again with a silly social message behind the lascivious title.
Don’t be waiting for him such a long time – My Robot Friend is here, he wants to fuck the human race, he is all yours and you’re all his. Enjoy.
1/2, Feb ’13
“Last Time I Did Acid I Went Insane” originally written by Jeffrey Lewis and released on Rough Trade (RTRADECD027, 2001). My Robot Friend version previously unreleased, used in “Small Doses” by kind permission.
“Robot High School” written by My Robot Friend, originally from the album “Soft-core” released on Double Feature Records (CD-DBL-0004, 2009). In Digital Form remix previously unreleased, used in “Small Doses” by kind permission.
Image borrowed from blog.modernmechanix.com