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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, 30th of May, 2010

Playlist 30.05.10 (11:13 pm)

Ah, music! You love it, I love it. We may hate each other's guts, but we've got this to tie us together, for all time. MWAHAHAHA.
OK, don't know where that came from.
Also, public service announcement: You can hear me on Monday the 31st (today!) at midday on FBi, filling in for the estimable Paul Gough on Paul's Playlunch.
LISTEN AGAIN as per usual, link at bottom!

The Australian Chamber Orchestra are putting on the first Australian performances of Jonny Greenwood’s Popcorn Superhet Receiver right now, and I had a chat with cellist Julian Thompson about it, among other things. I later discovered that Julian & I have met many times because he used to play in a Canberran band called Closet Klezmer - small world!

I started with an old favourite by Talk Talk. Interestingly, I'd been listening to some Radiohead to play in the Jonny Greenwood context, and the Kid A version of "Morning Bell" is one of their songs I keep going back to. The weird sketchy noise solo burrowing around in the background was reminding me of something, which I realised was Talk Talk's "Ascension Day", but it wasn't until I put that song on that I realised the drum beat (and tempo) is incredibly similar. While melodically they're fairly different, the influence is palpable.

From our Mr Greenwood we heard some of his classical composition going back to 2003's Bodysong soundtrack (way back in December 2003, UFog's & FBi's first year of operation, I gave listeners a sampling of the work of Olivier Messiaen that's so clearly an influence). And from his soundtrack to There Will Be Bloody we heard a couple of pieces that are in fact extracts from Popcord Superhet Receiver, and bear the mark of composers like Xenakis and (even moreso) Penderecki.

Next up, a mighty special on the mighty Paradise Motel, who are back from the dead to deliver a really wonderful Australian Ghost Story in the next week or two.
Early Paradise Motel was a boon for the mid-'90s indie scene, much of which was falling into tuneless disrepair (YMMV). The string arrangements, band arrangements and Merida Sussex's all conveyed a sense of oppressive melancholy, supported by mostly-black packaging... Their second release was the unparalleled Some Deaths Take Forever, twisting their folky indie into a crunchier, more experimental version of Portishead. It still stands up today.
The new album is seriously like they never went away. Its production is a little shinier maybe, and Sussex's vocals are less indistinct (not a bad thing), but the arrangements, particularly the strings, are just as strong as ever, and there are a number of excellent songs. Strangely, it's a kind of concept album about the Azaria Chamberlain disappearance, but it's good despite that, m'kay?

...Which brings us to another indie band who I'm rediscovering through no fault of theirs. You may have heard me playing the fantastic solo work of Perth's Adam Trainer on this show before - one track featured tonight. He played in the post-rock/indie band Radarmaker, whose two CDs are actually forever enshrined in the Utility Fog Hall of Fame (development application lodged with council pending funding).
That aside, they really are two fantastic releases, post-rock sounds and dynamics with great songwriting. Their website lists gigs up to August last year, so whether that's encouraging or not I can't say - I guess I have to ask Mr Trainer.

And thence to - oh! oh! - new Emeralds, on Editions Mego no less. It's more of the same — analogue synths of all descriptions, sequenced patterns, psychedelic noises, yummy yummy.
Somewhat inappropriately, in between their two tracks we had the dubstep-pop of new Planet µ artist Rudi Zygadlo. The second Emeralds tune mixed perfectly out of his track though, so it's all OK!
On my first listen to Zygadlo's album I was disappointed - it didn't seem as dubstep or as pop as I was hoping. But it's definitely a grower, and seems stronger in the second half. There are some great sounds, a few good real songs, and the parping dubstep bass throughout is fun.

And this is how you manage a couple of nice smooth genre-changes, kids. You as Caribou and Four Tet, and they make sure it's all hunky-dory. I've really warmed to Caribou's latest album, which seemed a bit too electronic at first. In comparison, the housey beats of the new Four Tet still haven't really taken me in, but I went a little bit overboard with some of his old remixes for tonight... Oh — and one new one. I'd better find out if The Acorn are as good as this track makes out!

We thus find our way into the realms of hip-hop via Four Tet, and in particular one of his much-acclaimed Madvillain remixes. However, the original version of "Accordion" is just beautiful, and of course once you've heard that you have to hear the Daedelus track from a few years earlier that uses the same accordion...
Then a reprise (from last week) of his tune from that Bleep comp, and a delightful track from one of my favourite albums by my favourite rapper, Busdriver, here collaborating with the equally excellent Radioinactive, with Daedelus on the beats.

And we end up back with Sydney music for our last few tracks. Of Yucuna I know little, except that we need to hear more! Freak folk meets noise? Shades of Gang Gang Dance maybe...

Improv string quartet The NOISE are curating the Thursday night Left Coast Festival gigs at Sedition throughout June. They're making some pretty fantastic sounds on these Feedback Experiments, and all the Thursday nights look great (I'm playing there on the 24th!)

And Heidi Elva, recently re-located to Melbourne, has a lovely new single out! With a dubby bassline and her delicate harp and vocals, it's just what you're looking for on a rainy day.

Talk Talk - Ascension Day [Polydor]
Radiohead - Morning Bell [Parlophone]
Jonny Greenwood - Moon Trills [Parlophone]
Jonny Greenwood - Proven Lands [Nonesuch]
Radiohead - Paperbag Writer [Parlophone]
...interview with Julian Thompson from the ACO, about their current performances of Jonny Greenwood's Popcorn Superhet Receiver among other things!...
Jonny Greenwood - Henry Plainview [Nonesuch]
Jonny Greenwood - 24 Hour Charleston [Parlophone]
The Paradise Motel - J.Star [Infectious Records]
The Paradise Motel - (hidden track, excerpt) [Infectious Records]
The Paradise Motel - My Sister in '94 [self-released]
The Paradise Motel - German Girl [Infectious Records]
The Paradise Motel - Watch Illuminum [Infectious Records]
The Paradise Motel - The Cops [self-released]
Radarmaker - Atlas Shrugged [self-released]
Radarmaker - Balthaaar [self-released]
Adam Trainer - Cabrini Green [hellosQuare Recordings]
Emeralds - Candy Shoppe [Editions Mego]
Rudi Zygadlo - The Man In The Duck [Planet µ]
Emeralds - Does It Look Like I'm Here? [Editions Mego]
Rudi Zygadlo - Magic In The Afternoon [Planet µ]
Caribou - Sun [City Slang]
Caribou - Melody Day (Four Tet remix) [City Slang]
The Acorn - Restoration (Four Tet remix) [Paper Bag Records]
Cyne - Automaton (Four Tet remix instrumental) [City Centre Offices]
Kings of Convenience - The Weight of My Words (Four Tet remix) [Mawlaw t/a Source UK]
Madvillain vs Four Tet - Great Day [Stones Throw]
Madvillain - Accordion [Stones Throw]
Daedelus - experience [Plug Research]
Daedelus - A Bloodworth [Bleep]
Busdriver & Radioinactive with Daedelus - Exaggerated Joy [Mush]
Yucuna - Circle of dead meat [demo?]
The NOISE - Feedback Experiment 1 (loud mix) [demo, available on their site!]
heidi elva - the saviour [self-released]

Listen again — ~ 174MB

2 Responses to “Playlist 30.05.10”

  1. Ryders Says:

    Mate, I don't know how much research you do every week.. but the result is brilliant. I'm hooked! Keep up the good work!

  2. Peter Says:

    *heh* Ta mate... Some weeks I do more work than others! Lots of older stuff this week, but there are shows with fuckloads of new tunes, where I'm preparing all Sunday!

    That said, I love listening to music basically, so I can't complain!

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