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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, 29th of March, 2015

Playlist 29.03.15 (8:13 pm)

Wide-ranging show of interesting music tonight! Folk, postrock, post-classical, gothic metal cello, experimental & arcane electronics...

LISTEN AGAIN because you can't afford to miss out! Podcast here, stream there.

John Renbourn, the second legendary folk/crossover guitarist from English band The Pentangle has passed away this week. It's been a while since I found myself playing them in tribute to Bert Jansch, and it's sad to be remembering them again for this reason. What amazing music though, cross-fertilizing English folk with jazz, blues, Americana, with virtuoso playing and pure English singing from Jacqui McShee.

It's always an Event when Godspeed You! Black Emperor release an album, especially given the 10 year gap before the last one - and the last one was 3 years ago! It's not quite an epic or double album or anything - in fact all the tracks segue into each other and it could be considered a single 40-minute composition in 4 parts. The middle two tracks are fantastic drone works, quite different from each other, and the first & last are nice heavy riffage with strings and soaring melodies, the full Godspeed. It's quite wonderful - in some ways I prefer it this way, as the big extended bombast can get a bit wearying. That a strong endorsement people, imbibe this.

href="http://www.nilsfrahm.com/">Nils Frahm has declared the 88th day of the year (usually March 29th) Piano Day and is using the inaugral event as the day to release his new album solo. It's available as a free download from the site, but you can also find information about a behemoth of an instrument that he's trying to get funded, so maybe get the vinyl or CD edition as well to help with that! It's very pretty, mostly unadorned piano, but runs from quiet contemplative stuff to rhythmic thumping and one reverb-laden piece for "Four Hands" which obviously featured multitracked Nils (well, I didn't see another player credited).

Nils Frahm also appears on the next track, which I'm using to segue into the next special... here he's collaborating with incendiary doom cellist Helen Money aka Alison Chesley, along with the Marseilles-based musical travel agent Philippe Petit. It's quite a seductive piece and one of the highlights from an excellent album of varied collaborations from Petit.

Next up, though, we have a truly wonderful offering from Helen Money working with the legendary Jarboe. The tracks are credited variously to one or other artist both together, or one "with" the other, presumably representing who came up with the original ideas. We have massive distorted doom cello lines, Jarboe's keyboards and sometimes guitar, and it's pure perfection.
Nothing like a good excuse for an artist special, so we delved back into a very small & personal (for me) selection of Jarboe's archives, from her iconoclastic work with Swans to collaborations with experimental metal legends Neurosis and Jesu, and contemporary Japanese metal/post-classical geniuses Vampillia.

Félicia Atkinson has been making low-key lo-fi and not-so-lo-fi music under her own name and as Je suis le petit chevalier and has built up a name for herself for her drone works and for very strung-out indie songs and experimental electronic works. Her latest album A Readymade Ceremony features avant-garde pieces for electronics and acoustic instruments. Earlier works featured electronic cut-ups and vocals, and more recently she's concentrated on more minimal drones. This new album is a challenging and recommended listen.

And we finish up with some arcane and spooky sounds from IX Tab. Taking some cues from Coil in terms of magickal references and weirdly processed electronics. He loves timestretched vocals and other sounds, stuttering through half-recognizable shapes while pulsating grooves hover like interference patterns in some quantum physics experiment. It's bizarre in the best way.

The Pentangle - Train Song [Shanachie]
Godspeed You! Black Emperor - Peasantry or 'Light! Inside of Light!' [Constellation]
Nils Frahm - Four Hands [Piano Day free download/Erased Tapes]
Philippe Petit & Alison Chesley & Nils Frahm - Succumb to Gravity [Home Normal]
Alison Chesley & Jarboe - For My Father [Aurora Borealis]
Swans - Songs For Dead Time (Jarboe version) [Young God Records]
Neurosis & Jarboe - Within [Neurot Recordings]
Jesu - Storm Comin' On (feat. Jarboe) [Hydra Head]
Vampillia - tui feat. Jarboe [Virgin Babylon]
Alison Chesley with vocals by Jarboe - Wired [Aurora Borealis]
Jarboe & Alison Chesley - Hello Mr. Blue [Aurora Borealis]
Félicia Atkinson - Carve The Concept And The Artichoke [Shelter Press]
Félicia Atkinson - Guitar means mountain [Spekk]
Félicia Atkinson - Against Archives [Shelter Press]
IX Tab - Blasted [Twiggwytch Recordings]
IX Tab - The Seams of Goodwill (Blue Blood) [Exotic Pylon/IX Tab Bandcamp]
IX Tab - The Burned Wretch [Front & Follow]
IX Tab - Blowm (for Alan Turing) (tiny excerpt) [Twiggwytch Recordings]

Listen again — ~104MB

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