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experimental electronica
electric string quartet

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, 28th of February, 2010

Playlist 28.02.10 (10:07 pm)

Yay for musics! LISTEN AGAIN, folks, at the bottom of this post!
Tonight was mainly a feature on a few special new releases.
Anticon’s Son Lux explores iterations of one track on the digital-only Weapons EP, which Australians can't get from bloody Amazon, so you might want to try Midheaven...
Have One On Me, Joanna Newsom’s new album is an epic over 3 CDs, but totally worth it for the trip - for both the lyrics and music, a layered love story that's beautifully poignant.
And while the CD release is still slated for end of March, Warp snuck the digital release of Autechre’s new album Oversteps a good month early. My suspicion is that they wanted to make the best of it, since it had well and truly leaked already. It's a #1 Stunna, the best release in ages from one of my favourite bands — on the release of their last album, I wrote a feature article in Cyclic Defrost about how much they meant to me. All the melodicism they've been submerging for the last decade or so is back to the fore, along with the full spectrum of beats and atmospheres and freakiness.

We started with one of Son Lux’s own reworkings of "Weapons", and then the opening track from the Joanna Newsom. The latter was so strikingly reminiscent of the lovely Kate Bush that I had to play a couple of her tunes, and a track from Pikelet’s new album segued so nicely from the latter that, well, it just had to be done. Back to Joanna for one of the absolute highlights, the gorgeous "In California", with wonderful orchestration and a curious way of changing key and then slipping back down a tone for the refrain.

I couldn't resist playing Clouds’ dubstep anthem from a few years ago, sampling from "The Book of Right On", and that took us into one of Son Lux’s reworkings of My Brightest Diamond from her fabulous four-artist remix EP collection released a month or so ago. And then brilliant young composer/arranger Nico Muhly got his hands on the Son Lux tune, with a great arrangement and chunky beats.

Speaking of chunky beats, I'm still obsessing a little over These New Puritans’s new album. Sad to have missed out on the limited edition featuring the full score, gimmick though that was. Another great track tonight.

Following that, we had the first track from the new Autechre, which will no doubt be featured over the next good few shows. "known(1)" is one of the beatless (albeit not rhythm-less) tracks, with an incredible freaked-out melody. It was followed by the utterly classic "Flutter" from the Anti EP, its non-repetitive beats still thrilling, and the gorgeously long fade-out still something else. Couple of other long-fade-out tracks from Ae later on, but we took the tip from the frenetic beats to pull out some early drum'n'bass (1993) from Acro, which turns out to be a collaboration between Decoder & Technical Itch, and is the sort of stuff that must've been influencing the IDM/drill'n'bass folks around the mid-'90s.

Back with Son Lux, and anticon labelmate Alias gets behind the mic for the first time in ages, as well as remixing the track. Following this, a brilliant track from ex-labelmate Sole with his current collaborater The Skyrider Band, aka William Ryan Fritch (see later in the playlist...)
The latter and the next track are currently available as part of a promotional compilation put together for South By Southwest by Ernest GonzalesExponential Records. The remix of Heliocentrics’s Sirius B features some brilliant rapping from Vast Aire, and comes courtesy of the very fine Stones Throw.

From there, Sydney/Adelaide duo Collarbones give us a piece of glitch-pop, and it's strongly recommended you go to their Bandcamp and download it FOR FREE.

And thence to New Zealand, where we join the wonderful Chris Knox, along with Alec Bathgate for the seminal and hugely-influential lo-fi experimental wonder-group the Tall Dwarfs. As you may know, Chris suffered a stroke last year that has (as often they do) devastated his language centers, although he is able to move around and even play music again now. We heard a tune from the Tall Dwarfs, Chris's solo indie hit "Not Given Lightly", and a couple of really marvellous reworkings from a marvellous double CD compilation that you should go and buy right now, called Stroke, in which artists from all around the world gathered together to help this importand and well-loved musician/artist/writer get by.
Bill Callahan’s cover of "Lapse" is one a few tracks on this album I've had on repeat for the last two weeks. It's just amazing. Also delightful is the contribution from veteran NZ artist Don McGlashan, best known probably for his indie band the Mutton Birds in the '90s. He pulls out the drum machine and channels Chris Knox's recording techniques while sounding as angelic as ever. We also had a gorgeous little number from one of the lost masterpieces of NZ music, 1989's debut album from his duo The Front Lawn.

Next up, our man in Melbourne, John McCaffrey aka Part Timer has sent in another UFog exlusive (for now), his remix of Vieo Abiungo, which turns out to be another project of the disturbingly-talented William Ryan Fritch. This is one of the best Part Timer remixes in ages too, a bit of an idm thing nicely complementing the African-influenced original track.

Japanese artist Miko contributes vocals and lovely glitches to Ian Hawgood’s remix album, and we then move back to Joanna Newsom for "Does Not Suffice", the last track from Have One On Me. It's a wonderful and fitting closer, wrapping up the tale with solo piano and voice, all the way up to the final lines, where the strings enter to underscore the final sentiment: "...and everywhere I tried to love you / is yours again, / and only yours." Gets you right between the eyes, and from there the song opens up crescendoing into a reverb-laden ending.

I took the opportunity of the reverb to cross to the closing track from Autechre’s Oversteps, which managed to be in just the right key. It may not have the advantage of moving lyrics, but it's a beauty too, and has a lovely long fade out. Two more Ae-related tracks take us out - side project Gescom with “Key Nell 2”, with two great beats and long ambient outro and then "Nuane", which ends their greatest album, Chiastic Slide, with chattering, burbling synths from another planet.

Son Lux - Weapons II [anticon]
Joanna Newsom - Easy [Drag City/Spunk]
Kate Bush - The Man With The Child In His Eyes [EMI]
Kate Bush - Army Dreamers [EMI]
Pikelet - Pillow Castle [Chapter Music]
Joanna Newsom - In California [Drag City/Spunk]
Clouds - Shallow [Noppa] {samples liberally from Joanna's "The Book of Right On"}
My Brightest Diamond vs Son Lux - To Pluto's Moon [Asthmatic Kitty]
Son Lux - Weapons IV (Nico Muhly Remix) [anticon]
These New Puritans - Orion [Angular/Domino]
Autechre - known(1) [Warp]
Autechre - Flutter [Warp]
Acro - Superpod [Force Ten Recordings/Breakdown Records]
Son Lux - Weapons VI (Alias Remix) [anticon]
Sole & The Skyrider Band - Mr Insurgent [Sole One/Fake Four] {available (for now) for free download as part of Exponential Records' SXSW promo album Kadohadacho here}
Heliocentrics - Sirius B (remix) feat. Vast Aire [Stones Throw] {available (for now) as above}
Collarbones - Kill Off The Vowels [Collarbones Bandcamp] {download free - follow the link!}
Tall Dwarfs - thought disorder [Flying Nun]
Bill Callahan - Lapse [Chris Knox/Spunk]
Chris Knox - Not Given Lightly [Flying Nun]
Don McGlashan - Inside Story [Chris Knox/Spunk]
The Front Lawn - Theme From The Lounge Bar [The Front Lawn] {see a hilarious YouTube transferred from video here}
Vieo Abiungo - Furious (Part Timer's Upbeat Mix) [forthcoming on Lost Tribe Sound] {This is William Ryan Fritch of the Skyrider Band - see above. Exclusive remix from Part Timer, direct from the man as usual...}
Ian Hawgood - A Film by Miko [Home Normal]
Joanna Newsom - Does Not Suffice [Drag City/Spunk]
Autechre - Yuop [Warp]
Gescom - Key Nell 2 [SKAM]
Autechre - Nuane [Warp]

Listen again — ~ 180MB

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