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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, 21st of May, 2017

Playlist 21.05.17 (12:38 am)

Quite a pop show tonight, or, well OK fair enough, not “pop” as such but songwritery anyway.

LISTEN AGAIN because you won’t hear these sounds in this order anywhere else! Stream on the demand is the FBi way, and podcast is here.

Sydney’s Joshua Gibbs aka Setec creates lush, layered indiepop straight outta his bedroom with charming folktronic edits, sampled beats and sounds, and lots of live instrumentation. Can’t wait for his new album (which, full disclosure, I contributed cello on a couple of tracks – so I’ve heard some more loveliness already!)

Ryan Lott’s Son Lux has been combining the very electronic with the very organic for ages too – his very first album incorporated orchestral arrangements into his indiepop, released on avant hip-hop label Anticon. We’ve heard a fair bit of Lott’s compositional talent recently, so it’s nice to have some new songwriterly stuff. Great pop songs, heavy electronic production and classical arrangements. Bit of everything hey.

Melbourne music stalwart James McGauren is about to release the latest album from his band The Black Hundred, melding postrock lushness with industrial heaviness. McGauz recently relocated to Sweden, his wife’s homeland, and he’s engaged Swiss electronic producer Walter Fini for a remix of his moody surveillance state meditation “Orwell”.

The next music is also incredibly moody, and coincidentally also Swedish. Little is known about Irma Orm aka Demen (the link there just goes to the album’s Bandcamp page), but she sent her music in to Kranky, describing it as “doom pop”, and of course they jumped at the chance to release this. It’s definitely got a bit of an influence from the early, most gothy Cocteau Twins. Orm doesn’t have the vocal range of Liz Fraser, but expressively she’s on point, and her echoey, doomy compositions are redolent of yearning and, yes, doom. It’s a beautiful, impressive debut.

From Sweden to Norway, with super talented double bassist Christian Meaas Svendsen, whose third solo album sees him expand his avant jazz & contemporary classical composition into avant pop songwriting. He’s also leader of minimal avant jazz/classical ensemble Nakama, and the members appear here backing his experimental songs, along with subtle electronic elements. It’s open and airy, very weird but also entirely approachable. The recent collaboration of Jenny Hval with Kim Myhr and the Trondheim Jazz Orchestra as well as other artists on the Hubro label suggests a kind of contemporary Norwegian tradition of Americana-influenced folk, precise jazz arrangements with room for improvisation, hung loosely on songwriting structures. It’s fantastic anyway.

And now, a few new (and one not as new) pieces from Marseille-based Italian singer/composer/electronic producer Alessandro Bosetti. First up, his Trophies project features fretless guitar from Kenta Nagai and drums from none other than Tony Buck. There are a couple of exquisite albums of Bosetti also with another Necks member, Chris Abrahams. Interestingly the first Trophies track I played tonight sees Nagai shadowing Bosetti’s vocals on guitar, and Abrahams does the same on the duo track I followed it with. The Trophies album is a pretty incredbile piece of avant whatever, with angular guitar, incendiary drumming, vocal drones and cut-ups along with all sorts of other electronics from Bosetti – in fact I think what sounds like sequenced synths is in fact all vocal samples. Please check out the micro-site with an extended story by Bosetti and some adorable/hilarious photos of random groups of three people posing from the “Band Photo”…
Bosetti’s got another album out just now too, on Italian experimental label Holidays Records. It’s entirely vocal focused, with passages of choral vocals, sequences in which the vocals are atomised into tiny pieces, re-pitched and sequenced – and passages of extended vocal techniques a la Meredith Monk. It’s crazy and fun.

English composer & electronic musician Christopher Chaplin released his solo album Je Suis le Ténébreux last year after working closely with krautrock & ambient legend Hans-Joachin Roedelius for some years. A remix EP from that album is coming out later this week from Fabrique, with four excellent reworkings. We heard the almost classical-sounding piece from Berlin-based producer Jana Irmert, and a delicate, rhythmic version from another Roedelius collaborator, American film-maker and composer Tim Story.

New Sydney artist Big Geoffrey has a track on the ever-reliable Tandem Tapes – a dense wall of noise, growing from a single drone into a churning lava lake of shuddering sound. Great.

Last up, New Yorker Ezekiel Honig returns after a few years with a new album of subtle field recordings, home-made percussion loops and quiet, minimal instrumentation. It’s an intriguing album, not quite conceptual field recording, not quite ambient, not exactly idm. This one track doesn’t give you the range – check it out on Bandcamp and have a listen to his other works, which have a similar hard-to-pin-down character, and lots of depth.

Setec – Cotton Bones [Feral Media]
Son Lux – Dangerous [Son Lux Bandcamp]
Son Lux – Part of This [Son Lux Bandcamp]
The Black Hundred – The Lion Sleeps No More [The Black Hundred Bandcamp]
The Black Hundred – Orwell (Walter Fini 2017 Remix) [The Black Hundred Bandcamp]
Demen – Niorum [Kranky]
Demen – Illdrop [Kranky]
Christian Meaas Svendsen – Kretsløp [Nakama Records]
Christian Meaas Svendsen – Avin [Nakama Records]
Trophies – Desidare [Unsounds]
Alessandro Bosetti & Chris Abrahams – La Nourriture [Unsounds]
Alessandro Bosetti – Plane / Talea Side B (excerpt, approximately first half) [Holidays Records]
Trophies – Small process [Unsounds]
Christopher Chaplin – Aelia Laeila (Jana Irmert Remix) [Fabrique]
Christopher Chaplin – Je Suis le Ténébreux (Tim Story Remix) [Fabrique]
Big Geoffrey – Lights On [Tandem Tapes]
Ezekiel Honig – Gravity [Anticipate Recordings]

Listen again — ~194MB

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