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experimental electronica
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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, 17th of March, 2013

Playlist 17.03.13 (9:05 pm)

What a line-up we have tonight! Benoît Pioulard retrospective, Graveyard Tapes (Matthew Collings and Euan McMeeken), amazing new Chris Abrahams, Textile Audio's opera-meets-electronica, another small retrospective with cellist Julia Kent, and the experimental cello & electronics of Nick Storring.

As per usual, you may want to listen (again?) via the podcast or download at the bottom, or get the full stereo streaming experience at FBi.

Canadian artist Benoît Pioulard aka Thomas Meluch has featured on this show for the last half a decade or so, mostly via his albums for the much-revered Kranky label. While he's an accomplished songwriter, he's always been interested in lo-fi drones, field recordings and processed sound, and jumps between these genres on most of his albums. The new one is slightly less on the lo-fi tip, but still features some gorgeous drones as well as his most catchy and perfectly-formed songwriting yet - other, perhaps, than his extraordinary work last year as Orcas, a duo with sound artist Rafael Anton Irissari whose self-titled album was one of last year's highlights.
He's also done his fair share of remixes, and one I caned in 2011 was his radical rework of a Vieo Abiungo.

On the same label as Vieo Abiungo comes an album from new duo Graveyard Tapes, featuring recent favourite Matthew Collings and Euan McMeeken of The Kays Lavelle, who runs the excellent mini50records out of Edinburgh. We've heard some of Colling's songwriting on his extraordinary album Splintered Instruments, from which we heard another cut tonight, but Graveyard Tapes centres on McMeeken's vocals and lyrics, with music, instruments and production from both. There's piano, clarinet and many other instruments, along with crackling drones and even crunchy beats on some tracks. It's a lush album and the deluxe CD packaging looks pretty great too.
As well as hearing from Matthew Collings' recent solo album, we heard a few from his previous, more ambient project sketches for albinos.

The Necks' pianist Chris Abrahams is releasing his third album on Room40 this week, and it continues the experimental nature of the last two. It's probably his best yet, challenging though it is. His beloved Yamaha DX-7 features (I believe), along with piano of course, field recordings, insane metallic crashing sounds, glitchy cut-ups... yep, a bit of everything.

Sydney-based opera singer Eve Klein has long had a passion for combining opera, contemporary classical and electronic music, which she does under the name Textile Audio. After some compilation appearances and the earlier Pomegranate EP, the full album The Pomegranate Cycle has finally been released on Stuart Buchanan's Wood & Wire label. These beautiful sounds have also been given life as part of a stage work, first for laptop, opera singer and dancer, and now involving a "networked midi orchestra".

As you may know, I collect cellists. As a cellist myself, I'm interested in people using the instrument in every way imaginable. I've been folliowing Julia Kent's work for a few years; I was never familiar with Rasputina, the band that both she and Zoë Keating were in (although not at the same time) (and as an aside, I was lucky enough to support Zoë at the Basement in Sydney on Friday night), but as well as having a couple of previous albums and some EPs, Julia Kent can be found playing cello with such luminaries as Antony & the Johnsons, and Michael Gira's Angels of Light. Not a bad résumé. Her lush music is usually made from many multi-tracked celli (plural of cello, don't you know), but she's not shy of adding in some subtle beats, found sounds and occasionally other instruments. I was very pleased to see her selected among the remixers (albeit doing a cover) in Amon Tobin's massive box set last year too.

And we finish with Canadian cellist, composer and experimental musician Nick Storring, whose work I've been meaning to check out for some time. I ordered a pile of stuff from the experimental label Entr'acte (whose packaging I've admired for years), and among them was Nick's 2011 album Rife, which almost ridiculously perfect matches my interests - cello, granular electronics, warped sounds, almost-beats, and finishing with a twisted but beautifully melodic piece, it's a bit of a hidden classic. Nick's also a collaborator, who's worked with Aidan Baker/Nadja among many others, and is a member of indie band Picastro.

Benoît Pioulard - Excave [Kranky]
Benoît Pioulard - coup de foudre [Kranky]
Benoît Pioulard - ragged tint [Kranky]
Benoît Pioulard - lasted [Kranky]
Benoît Pioulard - Gospel [Kranky] {under talking}
vieo abiungo - drowsy salted morning (benoît pioulard remix) [Lost Tribe Sound]
Orcas - Carrion [Morr Music]
Benoît Pioulard - Florid [Kranky]
Graveyard Tapes - Gravebat [Lost Tribe Sound]
Graveyard Tapes - Insomniac Dawn [Lost Tribe Sound]
Matthew Collings - Crows [Fluid Radio/Matthew Collings Bandcamp]
sketches for albinos - kids with no energy [nothings66/sketches for albinos Bandcamp]
sketches for albinos - haruki [sketches for albinos Bandcamp]
Chris Abrahams - Strange Bright Fact [Room40]
Textile Audio - Inside [Wood & Wire]
Textile Audio - Ripping [Wood & Wire]
Julia Kent - Kingdom [Leaf]
Julia Kent - Tempelhof [Important/Julia Kent Bandcamp]
Julia Kent - A Spire [Julia Kent Bandcamp]
Amon Tobin - Surge (Cover by Julia Kent) [Ninja Tune]
Julia Kent - Flicker [Leaf]
Nick Storring - Outside, Summer is Bursting at the Seams [Entr'acte]
Nick Storring - artifact 2 [Entr'acte]
Nick Storring - Artifact (I) [Entr'acte]

Listen again — ~ 111MB

One Response to “Playlist 17.03.13”

  1. Textile Audio | Who Says Opera Can’t Be Popular?!? 20,000 Downloads and Counting… Says:

    [...] Pomegranate has also been getting some media interest and I’ve been on a few different radio programs talking about what it means to write an “experimental opera”. On Friday I was on home territory being interviewed by Gareth Wilding from Radio Blue Mountains, but I also featured in an interview for 2SER’s Friday Daily which you can listen to here. We also have been getting some airtime on radio around Australia, including my fav experimental music program, Utility Fog. [...]

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