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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, 22nd of May, 2016

Playlist 22.05.16 (9:11 pm)

Here we here we go... special on the genius of Aesop Rock tonight, along with some varied tunes from idm to spoken word to pop, electronics and postrock of a sort with classical composition creeping in.

LISTEN AGAIN on the podcast here or stream on demand at FBi.

A new release from Autechre is always an event round these parts, a drop-everything moment, especially since lately they have a habit of surprising us with unexpected downloads well before the physical releases. And this time round it was also a cause for concern (of sorts) as their new release has come as a digital-only set of five EPs (or a five-part album if you prefer), clocking in at over 4 hours - and it was released only 2 and a half days before tonight's show. I've done my best to listen through it all and have found some very tasty highlights in the first run-through. It's vintage Ae, especially of the last decade and a bit - highly processed sounds, wobbling and jittering, sometimes weirdly squished into part of the EQ spectrum, sometimes gloriously widescreen, and frequently locking into awesome head-nodding grooves.
It's amusing to have a digital-only release from the duo that wrote "Incomplete without surface noise" on the CD edition of Tri Repetae all those years ago.

Sebastian Gainsbourgh's been making forward-thinking techno/post-dubstep productions as Vessel and also as part of the Young Echo collective out of Bristol for the last few years. Poet/spoken word artist Chester Giles is also associated with Young Echo and the two have teamed up now for two EPs under the "asda" name - a reference to the British supermarket chain. The words and very uncompromising music summon up a post-cyberpunk continual-consumption urban nightmare. Delicious.

Ian Matthias Bavitz started making hip-hop as Aesop Rock in the mid-'90s and gradually perfected a style of motor-mouthed lyrical prestidigitation using as many words as he could fish out of the dictionary. While he's collaborated with plenty of the Anticon types, and that other weird-hop motor-mouth Busdriver, it's probably his work with El-P that indicates his talent for embracing the inherent weirdness of hip-hop without sliding too far into indie "backpack hip-hop" - indeed one of the new tracks we hear tonight features an approving answering machine message from the great Chuck D. Equally, the indie connection is most emphasised in his duo with folk-punk legend Kimya Dawson as The Uncluded. But there's a real pop appeal to the singles from The Impossible Kid (and indeed the previous couple of albums at least) - flowing beats & scratches, great storytelling. And while his early works are mostly produced by the awesome Blockhead, in the last few albums Aes has really come into his own as an excellent producer in his own right.

UK Garage seems to be making a comeback particularly among Melbourne producers at the moment, and it's not something I'm going to complain about. Drummer Christopher Port is the latest representative of this production trend, with some nice scratching and pitch-shifted percussion over the bouncy first cut from his Vetement EP, out in July.

Marcus Whale is no stranger to this show, having first appeared as a schoolkid making experimental noise as Scissor Lock, evolving into post-rock and experimental electronic, and then with his r'n'b/vapourwave(?) duo Collarbones and r'n'b/techno of Black Vanilla. His solo stuff combines references to his classical composition training, his love of r'n'b/pop, and even his love of metal. It's very impressive live, with dual drummers playing complex cross-rhythms and sub-bass paired with beautiful horn arrangements blasting out of the PA...

William Ryan Fritch has worked along with producer SkyRider on a number of Sole's albums, but that's where the underground hip-hop connection ends; his music is a quite sui generis mixture of world-inflected classical composition, heavy percussion and, more recently, singing. After a massive string of connected albums & EPs in 2014 and through into early 2015, Fritch has been less active the last year or so, but this album continues where he left off, with epic scope.

Autechre - latentcall [Warp/Autechre Bleepstore]
Autechre - 13x0 step [Warp/Autechre Bleepstore]
asda (Vessel & Chester Giles) - spud-u-like [FuckPunk]
asda (Vessel & Chester Giles) - Killer of Men [No Corner]
Aesop Rock - Blood Sandwich [Rhymesayers Entertainment]
Aesop Rock - Daylight [Definitive Jux]
Aesop Rock - Bazooka Tooth [Definitive Jux]
Aesop Rock - Fast Cars [Definitive Jux]
Aesop Rock - Fumes [Definitive Jux]
Aesop Rock - Gopher Guts [Rhymesayers Entertainment]
Busdriver feat. Aesop Rock - Superhands' Mantra (Fuck Us All) [Fake Four, Inc]
The Uncluded - Bats [Rhymesayers Entertainment]
Aesop Rock & Homeboy Sandman - Environmental Studies [self-released, but via Stones Throw]
Aesop Rock - Lazy Eye (feat. Chuck D) [Rhymesayers Entertainment]
Aesop Rock - Dorks [Rhymesayers Entertainment]
Christopher Port - Bump [Pieater]
Marcus Whale - Vapour [Good Manners Music]
William Ryan Fritch - Entirety [Lost Tribe Sound]

Listen again — ~180MB

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