We believe underground producers and labels deserve special recognition! This week’s feature is dedicated to Reeko.
The biggest challenge any musician or producer has to face is whether their work can create a path that other artists will follow, or lay the foundation for the other artists. Juan Rico, the Asturian known as Reeko, is well aware of this.
Born in Oviedo (Asturias) in 1981, Reeko is a DJ who has rapidly attained recognition other artists have taken a long time to gain. In his case, it’s not been a matter of chance or coincidence, but the result of his innate and incredible capacity to be prolific, alongside his obsession for perfection. Although he marks his birth as a DJ in 1997, it wasn’t until his first release in 2002, under the Swedish label Emergence, that he became known professionally.
Juan Rico uses a variety of aliases to release the diverse artistic sensations which flow through him, these are all characteristics that define his personality and are an intrinsic part of Reeko himself. Producing and performing under different names allows him to concentrate fully on an idea or style to which he is totally faithful, putting aside for a moment sounds and influences that don’t belong in the particular character which he is mutating into at the time.
The result is a knockout. Reeko finds himself, deservedly, among the elite of Hispanic and global techno. He has released huge techno productions that have charted and played by the best DJs in the world. From his first tracks and EPs released on labels as reputable as Theory, Main out, Integrale Muzique, Deafmosaic, Inceptive, Rxxistance, Trece Records, Symbolism, Planet Rhythm, Warm Up or Palicavonzvreca, to more recent releases that include the heavy-hitting ‘Barcelona #3:00a.m’ on Soma, ‘La Mala Educacion’ and ‘Fat Punko’ EPs, both released on Avian and the 2018 collaboration “Realidades Holograficas I: Torre de Babel” with Jonas Kopp that dropped on Semantica.
Reeko’s “pathological” label/laboratory, Mental Disorder, was created in 2003 and is the imprint under which he has released a plethora of works of ever-increasing quality. ‘The Day After’ (2010) still holds its title as one of the best releases in Hispanic Techno. His latest release ‘Natural Causes’ MD24 with Psyk gained huge support across the board. Collaborations signed to this incredibly personal, intimate label come from none other than titans of techno Gennaro Le Fosse, Pacou and Oscar Mulero.
Following on from Mental Disorder was label Evidence, launched in 2005 and used by Reeko as a conductor to open up listeners to his passion for the darkest and sickest parts of the human mind. Looking deep within the human psyche where most of us would never dare to go or explore, Reeko draws us down into the laconic, aggressive and sweeping sound that this side of his character stems from. Reputable artists who have published with Evidence are Function, Paul Bailey and Trolley Route, to name just a few. Further critical acclaim has come in particular for his collaborations with the Humano project and the Belgian label MusicMan, home of the purest of European techno.
Reeko is an integral part of the Pole Group collective, the cream of techno formed in 2004. On the frontline of this group is Oscar Mulero, indisputable leader of the darkest Iberian sounds, joined by the Asturian duo Exium and the surprising and experienced Christian Wünsch.
Spawned from Pole Group is the powerhouse that is Selección Natural, uniting Reeko with Oscar Mulero & Exium. The consolidation Igniting a new level of Spanish techno and craft. 2018 brought their initial self titled LP and October 2019 their latest LP ‘Left Behind’.
Reeko has proven himself over and over again a true master of the darkest and hardest-hitting productions, slavishly followed by thousands around the world eager for a glimpse of this elusive master craftsman. For those lucky enough to be present, his is a performance that both inspires and devastates in equal measure, witnessed at Awakenings, both solo and B2B with Oscar Mulero, Berghain, Tresor, Fuse, Printworks and Concrete to name a few, alongside extensive touring of the USA, South America & Australasia.