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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, 16th of July, 2017

Playlist 16.07.17 (12:50 am)

Quintessential Utility Fog journey tonight. Hopefully it all makes sense!

LISTEN AGAIN for the nuances you didn’t pick up last time. Podcast here, stream on demand from FBi.

Trained as an opera singer, Jessica O’Donoghue has enjoyed working outside the classical idiom for a while with the likes of CODA, and has recently released an EP of electronic pop explorations. I think I played the original of this particular song a while ago, but here it gets an awesome skittery dub-techno reworking by fellow Sydneysider Deepchild (although Rick is relocating to London any minute I believe).

Young Sydney artist HC Clifford popped up on this show earlier this year with a lovely bit of indietronica. His new track, an instrumental ode to his recently-passed-away dog Bill, finds him in ambient electronic mode, and is equally lovely…

Canadian “ambient doom”/doomgaze duo Nadja are known for their crushingly heavy sound, but are no strangers to the softer tones. Nevertheless, it’s really lovely to hear some of their older tunes reworked by them on Stripped, one of a number of new releases from Nadja and Aidan Baker-related projects to just come out digitally.

Braveyoung‘s relationship to “metal” is something we hear in the second track to feature them tonight – from a 2011 collaboration with everyone’s favourite noise-metal romantics The Body. But their new album, on frequently-metal-affiliated label The Flenser, is pure, suspended ambient classical beauty, all strings & piano and drones. This stuff wouldn’t go amiss on a Stars of the Lid album, and just because I almost missed out on it, you definitely should not (miss it, that is).

Tasmanian outfit Omahara have just released their second album, and it’s through estimable Sydney label Art As Catharsis. Majestic, primal, ritualistic, and sometimes wild & harsh, it’s patient music that rewards lying on your back with your eyes closed – until you have to get up and headbang for a bit. There’s something weirdly Tasmanian and Tasmanianly weird about this stuff. Dig it.

Japanese sludge/doom metal veterans Boris have released something approaching 50 albums now, not to mention EPs and live albums and other miscellanea – and they’ve been at it for 25 years now. They’re experts at many different styles of metal and further afield, and no album is ever a straightforward affair. This one has its fair share of noise, its fair share of incredibly slow riffs, and also moments of more acoustic prettiness (usually interrupted by heavy riffs though). It’s pure Boris, and thus excellent.

Japanese composer & producer KASHIWA Daisuke has embodied the remix aesthetic throughout his career, creating incredibly dense & complex cut-ups and manically programmed drums, whether in connection with his classical compositions, previous postrock band or even J-Pop stylings. It’s a mix which is familiar to fans of Japanese electronica, especially World’s End Girlfriend, on whose label Virgin Babylon he’s released a number of albums now. His new album is the second to focus on his remixes, and they’re very often full-blown reworkings, reorchestrations with his signature mad beats, switches of direction etc. We heard from 三回転とひとひねり (Sankai Hineri), whose original layered chatter is recontextualised into a heavy beat-laden odyssey, into which halfway through some glorious jazzy piano chords are inserted. At the other end, the operatic vocals and piano of Ferri are dropped over (or under) some scrabbling junglist breakbeats. In between, we heard one of his more classical-tinged electronic pieces (not counting a whole album of Satie-esque solo piano), and one of his most J-Pop, a collaboration with Piana entitled 9 Songs released on her own guns N’ girls Records.

Düsseldorf-based composer/producer Orson Hentschel is not nearly as manic as Kashiwa Daisuke, but shares something of the cut-up aesthetic and the melding of classical influences with contemporary digital electronica. A background in film music infused his debut album on Denovali in 2016, Feed The Tape, with short, flickering sound samples mimicking pieces of film flapping on a spinning projector. His avowed influence here was classical minimalism, but while there’s a clear thread between these two albums, Hentschel points to trip-hop and electronic pop as the influences on Electric Stutter, his new album. To me there’s still a strong soundtrack feel along with the, yes, electric stutter – and that’s no bad thing. Both great albums worth your time.

Jessica O’Donoghue – Flow (Deepchild Reduction) [self-released]
HC Clifford – Dragon [SoundCloud]
Nadja – I Make From Your Eyes The Sun [Nadja Bandcamp]
Braveyoung – The Good King Will Punish You [The Flenser]
The Body & Braveyoung – Nothing Passes [At A Loss Recordings]
Omahara – III [Omahara self-released]
Omahara – (track 4) [Art As Catharsis]
Boris – Memento Mori [Sargent House/Daymare]
Boris – Kagero [Sargent House/Daymare]
三回転とひとひねり – 仮設5号機 (EVA remix by KASHIWA Daisuke) [Virgin Babylon]
KASHIWA Daisuke – About Moonlight [MIDI Creative/Noble]
KASHIWA Daisuke with Piana – The spider’s thread (remix ver.) [guns N’ girls Records]
Ferri – Subliminal Affirmation (arranged by KASHIWA Daisuke) [Virgin Babylon]
Orson Hentschel – Electric Stutter [Denovali]
Orson Hentschel – 16 mm [Denovali]
Orson Hentschel – Montage of Bugs [Denovali]

Listen again — ~208MB

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