Follow TV Tropes


YMMV / Aphex Twin

Go To

  • Archive Panic:
    • It can be a bit daunting figuring out how to get into Richard's music, considering all of the aliases and styles of music present. Many (including this flowchart) suggest to start with Selected Ambient Works 85-92, then branch to Richard D. James album and Syro (all released under the Aphex Twin name), and finding what one likes from there.
    • This trope occurred again when James started up his SoundCloud page, uploading 200+ songs spanning his entire career, and making nearly all of it freely downloadable.
  • Advertisement:
  • Broken Base: ...I Care Because You Do became this over time. Is it an underrated masterpiece full of interesting experimentation, or an awkward transition between his early acid and ambient oeuvre and his later forays into drum-and-bass and IDM? It's a rather touchy subject amongst Aphex fans.
  • Creepy Awesome: "Come to Daddy", and its video.
  • Fandom Rivalry: With the fandom of Skrillex. Odd, because Skrillex himself is a HUGE fan of Aphex Twin, so much so that he declared him as his main influence. Becomes even more odd if you consider that Aphex openly stated he doesn't know much of Skrillex to give an opinion of him, but also said that he respects the more mainstream electronic music artists, finding them as a gateway to electronic music in general.
  • First Installment Wins: Selected Ambient Works 85-92 is perhaps his most unanimously praised album, seeing as it's considered one of the greatest electronic music albums ever recorded.
  • Heartwarming Moments:
    • "Nannou", off the Windowlicker EP, is a song dedicated to his then-girlfriend composed wholly from music box samples.
    • Likewise, "aisatsana" from Syro is dedicated to his wife Anastasia, and consists of a calm piano melody mixed with birdsong.
    • A meta-example: James commissioning Ryan Wyer, a young Irish fan with autism whom had caught James' eye with his Aphex Twin fan videos, to produce the official video for his track "CIRKLON3 [Колхозная mix]".
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Variations of the titles of his first two albums have seen widespread homage, especially from ambient artists.
    • His infamous grin has been used/shopped quite a few times.
    • In honor of "Avril 14th", fans have made something of an informal Aphex holiday out of the date of April 14th.
    • "Flim" enjoyed a bit of traction as the center of a singular "21st century humor"-esque meme playing off of the juxtaposition of its slow opening crescendo and fast breakbeat.
    • Advertisement:
    • "Stone in Focus" is growing inextricable from the looped Baraka clip of a baboon sitting in a hot spring that is used in the most popular current upload of the song. A quick scroll through the comments will find a lot of mentions of "the zen monkey", such that it even gets referenced on separate baboon-less uploads of the song.
  • Misattributed Song:
    • Subverted with Pac-Man, which he released under the alias "Power Pill".
    • Averted with being credited to making a Tetris remix.
    • A handful of songs on P2P networks from the early 2000s were generally attributed to him. One of the most famous ones, "outside (kick ass violin solo)", is actually a song by Outside called "To Forgive But Not Forget (Lim'chol V'lo Lishkoach)".
    • There is no song by him called "Rubber Johnny" — what people who say so are probably thinking about is the song "afx237 v7" from Drukqs, which soundtracked a short film by Chris Cunningham which was called Rubber Johnny.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • A lot of his ambient tracks, especially those found on Selected Ambient Works Volume II. "Rhubarb" is a shining example of this.
    • When the distorted bass comes in at the end of "Windowlicker".
  • Narm Charm: "Come to Daddy", considering its lyrics are intentionally quite over-the-top. "I WILL EAT YOUR SOOOOUUUUL!!!"
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: One may listen to Selected Ambient Works 85-92 and find nothing particularly special about it, not taking into account that the sounds on this album were revolutionary and never before heard when it came out in 1992. (It's still unclear whether the dates in the title are truthful considering James' history with the press, but if true, it's no overstatement to say the album rewrote the history of electronic music.) Aiding this trope along is that, over 20 years later, the album does sound a bit dated.
  • Signature Song: "Come to Daddy" and "Windowlicker" are his two greatest commercial hits, although songs like "Avril 14th", "Rhubarb", and "Flim" are deemed by fans to be some of his best works.
  • Song Association:
    • "Come to Daddy" has certainly made its rounds.
    • Some of his music has been used in the radio stations of Grand Theft Auto games. "Z Twig" was featured in Grand Theft Auto IV's The Journey station, and "Windowlicker" in Grand Theft Auto V's FlyLo FM station (albeit edited to cut off around the 2.5-minute mark). Later, "IZ-US" was added in the "Doomsday Heist" update for both V and Online as part of the Blonded Los Santos station.
    • Also, his songs "Fenix Funk 5" and "Naks 11 [Mono]" have been featured in Wipeout Pulse and Pure.
    • "Omgyjya-Switch 7" was used in Children of Men. As "zen music", no less.
    • Several Selected Ambient Works Volume II tracks are featured in the original and/or "director's cut" versions of Afraid of Monsters. "Stone in Focus" was used in the title themes for both versions, "Hankie" in the Director's Cut intro, "Cliffs" when David's lamenting about the pills in the bathroom, "Tree" when waking up in the hospital after the nightmare, "Spots" when entering the alleyways in the city after the apartments near the hospital, and an edited version of "Rhubarb" in one of the endings.
    • As for Doom fans out there, "Jynweythek Ylow" is featured in a horror-themed mod Unloved during the Lost Childhood level.
    • Fans of Salad Fingers will recognize "Rhubarb" in the background of some of the show's sadder scenes.
  • Sweet Dreams Fuel:
    • Selected Ambient Works 85-92 and Selected Ambient Works Volume II (when it isn't being Nightmare Fuel) are full of these - see the trope page.
    • To say nothing of "Flim" and "Avril 14th."
    • "Goon Gumpas" and "Logan Rock Witch" both sound like something out of a cartoon.
    • "IZ-US" is a pretty relaxing song if you don't mind a little percussion.
    • The sections of "Girl/Boy Song" that don't have the erratic percussion. It's actually a lovely orchestral song and is even accompanied by a xylophone riff near the end of the song.
    • "Piano Un10 It Happened".
    • "Aisatsana", the closing track to Syro. It even includes birds chirping and other nature sounds for maximum relaxation!
    • Something from his SoundCloud, "5 Just Fall Asleep". The sound is alien in nature, but it's still relaxing and can induce sleepiness. It's also very reminiscent of Selected Ambient Works Volume II, so, that's a plus.
    • "7 lsb [slo]" deserves a special mention.
  • Vindicated by History:
    • While initial reception to Selected Ambient Works Volume II was somewhat mixed, it has since been received as a timeless classic in the ambient genre. The song "Rhubarb" has gone on to become a fan favorite and has been acclaimed as one of the best Aphex Twin songs ever created.
    • Richard D. James Album faced limited commercial success upon its release in 1996, selling less than either SAW II or I Care Because You Do. Nevertheless, after time passed it came to be held in very high regard, often listed as Richard's best or second-best album. "Girl/Boy Song" in particular is often held as one of his all-time great songs.
    • Drukqs came off the trail of Come to Daddy and Windowlicker, and naturally expectations were very high. Richard chose instead to do something different instead for his full-length album, to some disappointment to his newfound fandom, who were expecting something akin to his two unexpectedly successful singles. Critical reaction was similarly dire, it being dismissed as unimpressive, unrefined, and mediocre. But after the dust settled a few years later, fans and critics eventually warmed up to the album's abrasive sound and melancholic tone, garnering high praise for the very same things it was once panned for.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome:
    • To this day, people are praising the effects in the videos for "Come to Daddy" and "Windowlicker" alongside Rubber Johnny as holding up and still being realistic and disturbing.
    • The music video made by Weirdcore to promote the Collapse EP is certainly amazing.
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: Aphex Twin's both music videos and its songs are bizarre on many levels, but awesome at the same time.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: