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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, 13th of August, 2017

Playlist 13.08.17 (12:54 am)

Well hey… at least we’ve got music.

LISTEN AGAIN to the music because it’s everything – stream on demand from FBi, or podcast here.

Nmesh – White Lodge Simulation [Orange Milk Records/Orange Milk Bandcamp]
Nmesh – White Lodge Simulation (Odd Nosdam Remix) [Orange Milk Records/Orange Milk Bandcamp]
Alex Koenig has made music much longer than the “vaporwave” wave has been around, but as Nmesh he’s come to both represent and transcend that genre. His new cassette on vaporwaver & visual artist Giant Claw‘s Orange Milk Records covers bewildering ground, including a lot of grainy YouTube samples layered into ambient fauxstalgia, and also this insane Deadelus-style sample-laden drum’n’bass track… This very track is also blessed with a lip-smackingly good remix from Anticon don Odd Nosdam, with massive head-nodding beat, perfect Twin Peaks references, and, of course, that flute breakdown.

FOREVR – On A Wire [Tym Records/FOREVR Bandcamp]
FOREVR – Petrichor [Tym Records/FOREVR Bandcamp]
FOREVR – Stellar [Tym Records/FOREVR Bandcamp]
Brisbane shoegazers FOREVR have this week released not one but TWO full albums, digitally and also on vinyl. The vinyl editions come via Brisbane label Tym Records, which is run out of a guitar shop interestingly enough – because these albums do feature whammy-bar-lovin’ shoegazer guitar, but they’re actually extremely heavy on both synths and studio cut-ups and production tricks, which is super great. Also super great are their lead singer’s vocals, and indeed the actual songwriting. It’s the full package, folks. And I’ve only played you tracks from one of the two albums! Check ’em both.

Scattered Order – SO Mufflings [Scattered Order Bandcamp]
Scattered Order – Before (the art of…) [Scattered Order Bandcamp]
Scattered Order – How I hated that man [Scattered Order Bandcamp]
It’s been a long journey for Scattered Order, stretching back to proto or postpunk noisemaking in 1979, through their work with various acts under the banner of their Surry Hills studio M-Squared, running perhaps in parallel to the ’80s industrial scene, and incorporating sampling from the mid-’80s probably. Now in their second incarnation since around 2010, they’re pumping out the music, with their new delightfully-titled album A suitcase full of snow globes coming out as a double CD and digital release on their now long-running *ahem* Rather Be Vinyl label. This is 100% electronic, sample-based beat-based music, but it’s still plenty freaky and charmingly chaotic at times.

Pan Daijing – Act of The Empress 皇后之作 [PAN]
Pan Daijing – Phenomenon 现象之间 [PAN]
Berlin-based Chinese musician Pan Daijing‘s music is situated somewhere between noise and techno, classical and concrète, and all of this somehow surfaces in her new album Lack ??, released coincidentally enough on the PAN label. It’s her take on opera, whether Chinese or Western, and there are operatic soprano vocals in amongst clanging & scraping, avant-garde composition, insides of pianos and so on. Amazing stuff.

Sam Amidon – Ghosts [Nonesuch]
Nico Muhly – The Only Tune III (feat. Sam Amidon) [Bedroom Community]
Sam Amidon – How Come That Blood [Bedroom Community]
Sam Amidon – Warren [Nonesuch]
Earlier this year I was fortunate enough to see Sam Amidon appearing in a strange & lovely performance by the Australian Chamber Orchestra incorporating his folk song adaptations of “Murder and Redemption” alongside various classical works on a similar theme. It was strange for me to see Amidon featured but treated as really just part of the program, because for a decade or so now he’s been an ever-rising star. His renderings of American folk tunes are simultaneously exquisitely authentic, and utterly modernised, recontextualised and restructured through his adaptations along with Nico Muhly‘s orchestral arrangements, Shahzad Ismaily‘s multiple instruments and processing, etc. His albums for Nonesuch have at times brought him into more radio-friendly folk waters, but also see him bringing in aspects of free jazz, like on the 11-minute closing track to his new album (which I wish I’d had time to play tonight!)

Blood Language – Springshots [SoundCloud]
From an album still, I believe, looking for a home, this is a great new piece of postrocky indie music from a pair of Scottish artists, Euan Millar-McMeeken aka Glacis, and Ben Chatwin, maker of postrocky drone and psych stuff who used to be known as Talvihorros.

William Ryan Fritch & Matt Finney – All That Lives Will Sour [Lost Tribe Sound]
William Ryan Fritch – We Fear Change [Lost Tribe Sound]
Two new pieces from the still prolific William Ryan Fritch, from the latest batch of releases from Lost Tribe Sound. One album finds him working with spoken word artist Matt Finney, whose laconic mumblings I find about as hard to get through as Mark Kozelek’s it has to be said, so the track I chose only has some hummed melodic vocals. The other album is an extended re-release of the ravishing soundtrack The Old Believers. You know what you’re going to get with William Ryan Fritch – reverberant world-music-inspired quasi-orchestral stuff, and sometimes gentler folky numbers. This stuff is particularly pretty.

Enrico Coniglio & Matteo Uggeri – Open To The Sea feat. Francesca Amato / ComaneciLau Nau & Andrea Serrapiglio [Dronarivm]
Enrico Coniglio & Matteo Uggeri – Allarme feat. Francesca Stella Riva – trombone [Dronarivm]
Italian sound artists Enrico Coniglio & Matteo Uggeri pair up here on a stunning album for Dronarivm that takes unidentifiable field recordings, acoustic samples and many guest performances to create a kind of ambient, droney form of folktronica. It’s truly lovely stuff that’s seemingly formless yet well-constructed.

Crewdson – Waterflow [Slowfoot]
Crewdson – Saxbell [Slowfoot]
UK artist Crewdson mostly inhabits something of a more familiar variant on “folktronica” – influenced by the glitchy self-sampling of Matthew Herbert (with whom he’s worked extensively), as much as by the pioneering folk-meets-electronic-production of TunngMinotaur Shock et al. His second album Toys sees him working with homemade hybrid acoustic/electronic instruments as well as with detailed sampling and studio choppery. Check out some of his weird audio tech – wearable music controllers etc – at his website. There’s a lot of folk-influenced songwriting to back up the processed acoustic instrumentation, but then in the middle this rather beautiful ambient piece appears, with layered sax lines. It’s quite a hard album to pin down, and all the better for it.

Listen again — ~108MB

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