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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, 30th of September, 2012

Playlist 30.09.12 (10:06 pm)

Space beats, dubstep-meets-'80s-pop, intricate drum'n'bass, improvtronica, field recordings meet ambient, post-classical meets noise, we've got it all tonight!
LISTEN AGAIN via the usual methods: stream online, download below or podcast.

Collarbones' long-awaited second album was FBi's album of the week last week, and deservedly so. It's even more influenced by their love of r'n'b, and perhaps not as much is typical UFog fare, but they still love constructing their music out of unusual chunks of sound (tiny vocal samples etc). "Soul Hologram" is more along the glitchy lines of their earlier work, while "Teenage Dream" is perhaps as close as they'll get to a dubstep beat, which takes us nicely into the next selections...

Mala's one of the undisputed kings of dubstep, since the beginning, and has made and released some of the most iconoclastic tunes of the genre, solo, as part of DMZ and with his Deep Medi label. Initially, Gilles Peterson's idea of having Mala collaborate with Cuban musicians seemed a bit odd – Mala's roots are Jamaican, and his music is dark, heavy, slow-moving in ways that I couldn't imagine gelling with Cuban music's rhythms and jazzy sensuality. But he's made it work, especially on some of the highlight tracks – mostly, I think, by making classic dubstep rather than trying to warp his sound. It's beautiful when the Cuban piano chords, percussion or bass sneak through here and there, but it's certainly more "Mala" than "Cuba".

Young Scottish producer Rudi Zygadlo is certainly not a dubstep traditionalist. On his first album and this new one he hangs his '80s(?) pop vocals, odd quasi-classical string arrangements and post-Zappa jazz off a post-dubstep framework... it's unlike anything anyone else is doing. It's on that borderline between totes naff and pretty cool, but heck, I enjoy it :)

Great to hear another excellent song with Martina Topley Bird on Clark's new EP. For all that it's been described as the dancefloor cousin of the album Iradelphic, to me it doesn't sound that different. He can be a lot more techno than this – but I prefer him in this mode anyway. The last track, which I also played, seems like classic '90s ambient idm, of the like that µ-Ziq used to make. Keep the faith, Christopher!

Awesome that Finnish d'n'b/breaks maestro Fanu has just setup a Bandcamp for himself. We get to grab his earliest 12"s for a steal, plus there's a whole free album's worth of unreleased tracks! But peeps, if you're partaking of the free shit, consider buying something too m'kay? Fanu's a master at intricate break choppery at all tempos, but he doesn't skimp on melody, bass and all the rest. And he has one or two very fine female vocal collaborators too. Not to be missed.

Speaking of d'n'b technicians, you probably couldn't be unaware of my obsession with Icarus, and both members have any number of side projects going on. Sam Britton releases solo records as Isambard Khroustalov (nope, no idea why), but here with Fiium Shaarrk he's collaborating with Rudi Fischerlehner on drums and Maurizio Ravalico on percussion, so it's pretty free improv (like a lot of his stuff), but also pretty rhythmic. I'll be playing some more from this soon for sure.

Sydney's Kate Carr's doing amazing work with her Flaming Pines label and I have two new releases to spin tonight, both (as usual) mixing field recordings and more "musical" elements. First up is a split between Kate Carr herself, with natural sounds brushing up against electric guitar, and the always-amazing Gail Priest mixing vocals in with her electronics – reminiscent of Motion Sickness of Time Travel (or is it the other way round?)

Also on Flaming Pines is young Perth artist Michael Terren, who dragged an upright piano into a field in his childhood farm, and the sounds of birds and cows coexist with his minimalist piano pieces without (potentially) the need for any fancy mixing. And it's beautiful music, which helps!

And another split release follows, from two contemporary noise/not-noise artists who are willing to bury true beauty beneath squalling distortion or awesomely ugly digital edits. Rene Hell comes on all neo-classical on his side, with screetching noise over pensive piano, somewhat reminiscent of Burning Star Core. Oneohtrix Point Never, meanwhile, comes on all early Fennesz, with glitching micro-samples.

We finish with not a split release but a collaboration between Edinburgh-based sound artist Matthew Collings & Sweden's Dag Rosenqvist (no longer Jasper TX), with beautiful acoustic sounds, drones and heavy noise, on an essential 3" CD from Hibernate.

Collarbones - Missing [Two Bright Lakes]
Collarbones - Soul Hologram [Two Bright Lakes]
Collarbones - Teenage Dream [Two Bright Lakes]
Mala - Curfew [Brownswood Recordings]
Mala - Changuito [Brownswood Recordings]
Rudi Zygadlo - Russian Dolls [Planet µ]
Rudi Zygadlo - Catharine [Planet µ]
Rudi Zygadlo - Black Rhino [Planet µ]
Clark - Secret Slow Show (feat. Martina Topley Bird) [Warp]
Clark - Dove In Flames [Warp]
Fanu - Next To The Divine One I Awake [Lightless/Fanu Bandcamp]
Fanu - Going Home [Fanu Bandcamp] {free release!}
Fanu - Controversial [Fanu Bandcamp] {free release!}
Fanu - Salem (with Gigi) [Lightless/Fanu Bandcamp]
Fiium Shaarrk - We Advance Covered [Not Applicable]
Kate Carr - an inky night [Flaming Pines/Metal Bitch Recordings]
Gail Priest - randolph's dream [Flaming Pines/Metal Bitch Recordings]
Michael Terren - Cureakling [Flaming Pines]
Michael Terren - These Ones [Flaming Pines]
Rene Hell - Meta Concrete [NNA Tapes]
Oneohtrix Point Never - The Letter [NNA Tapes]
Matthew Collings & Dag Rosenqvist - Wonderland Part One [Hibernate]
Matthew Collings & Dag Rosenqvist - Precipice [Hibernate]

Listen again — ~ 179MB

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