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Utility Fog


Your weekly fix of postfolkrocktronica, dronenoise, power ambient, post-everything improv... and more?
Sunday nights from 9 to 11pm on FBi Radio, 94.5 FM in Sydney, Australia.

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Sunday, 7th of August, 2016

Playlist 07.08.16 (9:05 pm)

A very electronic UFog for you tonight…

LISTEN AGAIN for the hottest tips on the hottest blips! Podcast here, stream on demand there.

Starting tonight with a quite experimental remix of a quite quirky cover of a Taylor Swift song. Sydney indie band OM Collective covered the song a little while ago, and young Sydney-based classically-trained electronic musician Mlekö has snuck in everything from jazz & classical influences to glitchy beats. Nice work.

Aussie underground indie musician Benjow continues to release idiosyncratic sounds as Haddocks’ Eyes – from drone works and electronic experiments to old tapes of stunning indiefolk songs. This one’s a take on an old song, with his signature vocal pitch-shifting and heaps of processing over everything.

Canberran duo Spartak featured recently on this show with their new EP, and we take a couple more tracks from it tonight. Released by fledgeling label Provenance, the newest venture of FBi alumnus Stuart Buchanan, 2 of its 5 tracks are actually kind of remixes. One tonight sees material from Spartak mixed & compiled into a piece by glitch pioneer Oval.
Before the Spartak tracks we heard a short excerpt from an amazing concept piece by Spartak’s Shoeb Ahmad, which was debuted in Canberra a couple of months ago in celebration of the Tour de France. It’s a cycling-inspired chamber composition-cum-postrock/electronic work-cum-gallery exhibition called Two Pedals.

And next up we reach a large portion of the show in which we focus on the massive new compilation from Touched, the label that raises money for British organisation Macmillan Cancer Support. Their first compilation came out in late 2013 and it was pretty massive – 123 tracks. The second one basically doubled that, and I shudder to think what the fourth will look like, because Touched 3 is 417 tracks long, clocks in at over a day and a half of music, and at standard v0 encoding the mp3 download from Bandcamp is 4.17GB. That’s a lot to take in, but along with various little-known (and often great artists) it has many many heavyweights: idm & electronic heroes like Autechre, Plaid, Funckarma, Ital Tek, Kid606, BALAM ACAB, Dntel, Ulrich Schnauss, The Gasman turning in a drill’n’bass classic a la Squarepusher or µ-Ziq… and Mr. Projectile with 17 minutes of evolving drum’n’bassy idm. There’s techno bods like 808 State, Mark Franklin, experimental types like Leafcutter John, drone/ambient artists like Aaron Martin and Offthesky. There’s something from Alec Empire, something surprisingly ambient from Cardopusher, there are some ’90s drum’n’bass heroes like Arcon 2 and Klute.
And that’s all artists I couldn’t fit into tonight’s playlist!
So what have I selected? We start with something really cool from Epic45, showing their Hood influence on their sleeves yet again with glitched-up guitar and drums.
Then we have the English oddball musical genius John Callaghan, who I first discovered courtesy of his extraordinary mutation of Autechre’s “Tilapia” on one of the Warp20 compilations – see a video here.
This compilation, like most electronic music genres, is disappointingly low in female contributions. I’ve chosen one excellent piece, from ex-Planet µ artist Mrs Jynx & vocalist iAM9. Among the other women on the compilation is Holly Herndon, although her track is taken from her latest album.
Last week on the show we heard some excellent music from Moscow label Full of Nothing. Russia is producing heaps of excellent electronic music at the moment, and tonight we hear from St Petersburg artist Antrru with a lovely piece of electronic pop.
And speaking of electronic pop, Adelaide artist Clue to Kalo returns to his “Superscience” electronic roots with a gorgeous song that can also be found on a single from earlier this year.
And from Ireland, we have the wonderful Sunken Foal (who also appears here with his old duo Ambulance) remixing a piece by Irish indie artist Si Schroeder from 2012 (but released officially for the first time here).
There are plenty of unknowns on here who are pulling their weight easily – here’s the mysterious Tworist, doing an incredibly effective Boards of Canada impression with heart-pulling analogue synth melody and fidgety hip-hop beats.
But there’s nothing like the classics, and Bola aka Darrel Fitton dates back to the early days of idm, even collaborating with Autechre on one of the first Gescom EPs. He’s apparently got a new album coming out later this year according his Facebook page, and I can’t wait!
And finally, another new artist to me is Th’idiot, who here contributes a bit of pitch-perfect drill’n’bass-style idm, with mournful repeating chords/melody and gradually more manic drum programming.

German minimal electronic mainstay (and To Rococo Rot member) Robert Lippok also appears on Touched 3, but I didn’t have time to play his track tonight. Instead we’re hearing the bonus track from a vinyl re-release by Japanese label flau of his raster-noton EP Open Close Open. It was only ever available on CD, from back in 2001, and for the vinyl release he’s added another track of similar minimal dub with field recordings, chatter etc. It’s delightfully off-putting.

Back to St Petersburg with celebrated drum’n’bass duo Abstract Elements, who’ve contributed quite a bit to the “autonomic” subgenre of drum’n’bass, which is a more minimal, stripped-down version of the genre. Here they gradually fill in the gaps with junglist breaks, but keep the basic rhythm in a dancehall syncopation. It’s available on Convex Industries now.

And finally tonight we hear from Welsh label Serein, home of much lovely ambient & postrock/jazz type stuff, with the first in a new compilation series called Orbital Planes and Passenger Trains. There are some piano miniatures from Deaf Center‘s Otto A Totland, a contribution from Japanese jazzy-electronica dude Ametsub, and various Serein regulars, among whom we heard first from Hidden Rivers, aka Huw Roberts who runs the label. Australian artist Brambles made a big impact with his debut album on the label in 2012, and contributes a track from a similar period which originally appeared from a Futuresquence compilation. This will be the first time you can own it on CD or vinyl though, and it’s a real beauty of post-classical elegance. And finally, some jazz-infused postrock (or is it the other way round?) from Chicago band Colorlist. Another highly recommended compilation, out in the next week or two!

OM Collective – Touched (Mlekö Remix) [Stream on SoundCloud]
Haddocks’ Eyes – acquiesce (2016) [Haddocks’ Eyes Bandcamp]
Shoeb Ahmad – Twin Pedals Section 2 (excerpt) [unreleased]
Spartak – flags for an organization [Provenance]
Spartak – seasonal (mix + production by Oval) [Provenance]
Epic45 – People At Work [Touched]
John Callaghan – Just Be [Touched]
Mrs Jynx & iAM9 – For Afters [Touched]
Antrru – Nuar [Touched]
Clue to Kalo – Tender Anchoret [Touched]
Sunken Foal & Si Schroeder – Jump Ship [Touched]
Tworist – How Did We End Up Here [Touched]
Bola – Expermiate [Touched]
Th’idiot – Willem [Touched]
Robert Lippok – + [flau]
Abstract Elements – Right Way [Convex Industries]
Hidden Rivers – What’s Up G? [Serein]
Brambles – Petrichor [Serein]
Colorlist – Gone To Ground [Serein]

Listen again — ~191MB


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