If you take a look at http://atomicreactor.bandcamp.com (Atomic Reactor’s releases page) you’ll notice there are about four different releases offered, but what you might not realize is that they all came out in the last year, and more are scheduled to come out soon!
As well, on February 13th of this year, he and kLL sMTH teamed up as “2Nutz,” and released an EP that you may have heard about, entitled, Blapahedronous (Prime Dub Records); and Atomic is also releasing an EP on Muti Records called Meltdown, which will be coming out on March 26th.
“I have packed a lot of releases into a short amount of time.”
I got a chance to listen to a lot of Atomic’s “older” music (as well as his unreleased stuff) and I have to say, it’s fun as hell! His ‘REMIXXXXX’ release spans the gambit, tossing in sounds from the likes of Snoop, Nit Grit, and even the Goosebumps theme (if you’re unfamiliar, ask someone who was born in the 80s) and he shows no sign of slowing down – in fact, it seems as though he’s finding his voice in electronic music and is likely to tear it up for some time to come.
I was able to conduct an interview with this relatively new face on the scene – this happenin’-glitch-hoppenin’ producer, and talk to him about his past and hopeful future in electronic music. His real name , as hard as it may be to believe, is not Atomic reactor, but David Holsapple; he lives in Colorado, and has been sharpening his skills for the last few years.
“My whole experience thus far in the electronic music world has been full of twists and turns. Where I am now is nowhere close to where I thought I would be four years ago and the future seems unpredictable but I’m very excited for the next step of this journey.”
So where was he a few years ago?
“From a young age I have always had a strong connection to music.”
He started playing Clarinet when he was in high school, but it wasn’t until he got to college that he decided to try his hand at electronic music, and, working as an electrical engineer student, he bought Maschine and would jam with anybody he could (including his brother, Cualli, who produces and plays guitar quite well. Eventually, he shifted to Ableton as his primary DAW, and his first release was Space Time Joy Factory.
“Instead of working in a more improv style I had pretty much gone to the opposite end of the spectrum and was producing in a style of over-production where I would work on a single track for two weeks, sometimes more. This greatly improved my skills in sound design, composition, and mastering.
“…At this point I became very interested in artists like Eskmo and Amon Tobin, who are just killing the sound design and sample manipulation. This interest sparked the creation of my Sliced Swiss EP, which I created to push the boundaries of my creative ability as well as sample manipulation and released it in November of 2011.”
What does Dave listen to in his free time, when he’s not building massive bass-bombs?
“My ‘personal favorites’ was a hard list to make but my very, very favorites are: Tipper, Vibesquad, Mr. Bill, Circuit Bent, Freddy Todd, kLL sMTH, Cualli, and iONik. Each one of those guys is bringing a unique style that they have evolved with many years of disciplined production methods.”
So his new release?
It’s called Meltdown. The first track, ‘Body Movin’, sounds like a night on the town in some futuristic robot city in Japan – very fun, very thrilling, and also very melodic. Although mechanical in it’s aesthetic, Atomic Reactor’s new release doesn’t stray far from the extremely melodic, from the the whirly and fast-paced synth-work on ‘Unreal,’ to the Opiou-esque rhythmic / melodic intricacy and tranced-out pads on ‘Intergolemia,’ it’s a very enjoyable ride, the whole way through.
“I’d love to seen the overly convoluted dubstep scene start moving into a glitch side trance movement. I’m loving the melodic glitch bass world instrument sound that has been spawning over the last year (mostly coming from down under). ”
Another thing I noticed about the album – I wondered about a possible (and subtle) Beastie Boys homage, as two of the tracks on the album remind me of the title tracks from ‘Hello Nasty,’ but maybe I’m just being hopeful.
There’s also a kLL sMTH remix of ‘Body Movin,’ which gives the song a more bouncy flow, and a very pleasing vocoder.
“I am very excited about this release because it is the very best of my solo production to this point. Since December kLL sMTH and I have been putting together another release that we want to drop just before festie season starts. ”
After listening to the album, I feel like I just got my car thoroughly washed with lazers and bass, possibly by alien robots from the future. But despite the ridiculous and unnecessary space-age metaphors, it’s actually a somewhat easy-going and mostly-midtempo album. Very danceable. On the one hand, yes, it has all sorts of meticulously cut up sounds dancing around, but its so well-done that it becomes accessible and instantly rewarding.
All in all, a fun glitch hop release from a rising star on the scene. Get ready for more tracks from Atomic, he seems to be geared up for more interstellar action soon!
“My goal in producing music is to push the boundaries of vibrational frequencies while tickling peoples conscious with love. Also, playing the main stage at Red Rocks would be unbelievable!”
The new album, ‘Meltdown,’ (Muti Records) will be dropping on the 26th of March, 2012.