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experimental electronica
electric string quartet

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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Playlists are listed with artist name first, then track title and (remixer), then [record label]. Enjoy the links.

Sunday, 26th of November, 2017

Playlist 26.11.17 (8:10 pm)

Thanks heaps to Reg Harris for holding the fort for the last two weeks while I was away!
You can find him on his usual show Shortwave on Tuesday nights.

LISTEN AGAIN for the time of your life... FBi has the stream on your demand, or you can podcast right here.

björk - courtship [One Little Indian]
björk - losss [One Little Indian]
I was, I must admit, rather apprehensive about this new björk album after seeing the first two videos before its release. They seemed like the worse of her meandering tendencies combined with the same from Arca, and after the devastating beauty & depths of emotion of vulnicura, I wasn't sure I could cope with the "Tinder" album (as she unfortunately referred to it in one interview, to find it sticking forever to the poor album). Anyway, of course utopia is not just chirping birds and twee love metaphors, although there's more than enough birds and waaaaay more than enough flutes thankyouverymuch. Nevertheless, there are also glitchy beats and a whole gamut of emotions. I like it well enough. It's Björk. She is a genius.

Cock & Swan - fult [Hush Hush]
Cock & Swan - ghost mount [Hush Hush]
I first discovered the work of Ola Hungerford and Johnny Goss as Cock & Swan on a Lost Tribe Sound where they were working with acoustic instruments - but they were an electronic act before that, and returned to the synths and beats some time ago, comfortably signed to local Seattle label Hush Hush. They've been putting out some mysterious sounds recently, soundtracks & dance works and other conceptual stuff, but this album is somewhat more song-oriented. Lovely as ever.

Gail Priest - Alien Aeolian Infrastructure [Gail Priest Bandcamp]
Gail Priest - Home Moan [Gail Priest Bandcamp]
A bit over a year ago Sydney experimental musician Gail Priest undertook a residency in a small town in Iceland, which resulted in many fascinating field recordings - not just wind & water but creaking metal and sighing flagpoles. Some sounds were left as-is, some heavily processed, to which she added further electronics and vocals to create something quite unlike your typical field recording music, and very like Gail's wonderful body of work. It's so great to have some new Gail Priest music to play you on this show! Grab it from Bandcamp, even in a limited CD-R edition.

Medicine Voice - Roar [Provenance]
Medicine Voice - Bombshell [Provenance]
Sar Friedman has been playing with experimental acts around Melbourne & Sydney for a while, and released her debut solo album as Medicine Voice on Stuart Buchanan's Provenance Records last year. Equally impressive is this new EP, 3/4 produced by the legendary studio dude Randall Dunn who's worked with countless important heavy & weird acts. These tracks benefit from a swaddling darkness & warmth which helps drive the ritualistic songwriting. Buy the release and enjoy the 18-minute closing track "Tammuz" also!

ju ca - Fading of a Thought [Phinery]
ju ca - Opus [Phinery]
The hynpagogic, vaporwavey debut album from Justin Cantrell's ju ca (after some EPs and collaborations) is apparently about "spatial awareness and reproduction", according to a press release he wrote himself which I can make neither head nor tail of. In any case, there are some lovely jittery glitchy sounds along with the somewhat familar pitch-shifting vocal sounds & FM synthesis that certain people seem to love so much at the moment.

The Remote Viewer - This Old Face Dates Me [Other Ideas]
The Remote Viewer - A Floor of Bees Outside The House [Other Ideas]
The gloriously understated sound of The Remote Viewer has beguiled me since the late '90s when I first encountered their beautiful debut LP on 555 Recordings (then of Leeds) in a tiny Manchester record store called Pelicanneck (which later morphed into the juggernaut Boomkat). Their sound, then as now, featured clicking, fidgety, often relentless beats and a mixture of harsh and beautiful electronics, with heart-pulling melodies emerging incomprehensibly from the chatter. Their new album Us. In Happier Times is vintage Remote Viewer fare, 9 years since their last, and in fact is material resurrected from old MiniDiscs rather than new, as such - but who cares. Essential.

M.E.S.H - Ihnaemiauimx [PAN]
M.E.S.H - 2 Loop Trip [PAN]
M.E.S.H - Coercer [PAN]
For a couple of years now, Berlin-based M.E.S.H has been welding his glitchy experimental idm tendencies to grime & bass music. His new album Hesaitix doesn't dispense with the weirdness, but does situate itself even more firmly on the dancefloor, with grooves ranging from the funky "2 Loop Trip" to driving tribal techno like "Coercer" (with room for some more ambient tracks in there too).

Jana Rush - ??? ?? [Objects Limited]
Jana Rush - Frenetic Snare [Objects Limited]
The debut album from Chicago producer Jana Rush is at its base footwork, unsurprisingly given how embedded in that scene she is - but she happily draws on everything from hip-hop's sampling of jazz and, on the last track, a Chicagoan perspective on the connections between footwork and jungle. Really really nice.

Colin Stetson - The Rain Like Curses [Adult Swim Singles Series 2017]
You won't be able to get to the Adult Swim link above if you're in Australia, for some reason - but you can still stream this track on SoundCloud at least. For his album earlier this year, Colin Stetson directly referenced the electronica of Autechre & Aphex Twin in inspiring his multi-layered solo saxophone work, but electronica seems even more present in this extraordinary track for Adult Swim - skittering repetitive rhythms, a pulsating EBM techno-style bassline and the characteristic Stetson howls over the top. It's glorious, it really is.

Brian Eno & Kevin Shields - Only Once Away My Son [Adult Swim Singles Series 2017]
Again unavailable for us at the weirdly now geo-locked Adult Swim site, you can at least stream this on SoundCloud too. You've probably heard this by now, right? Two legends of sound, ambient & electronic pioneer Brian Eno & shoegaze/guitar-mangling genius Kevin Shields, joining forces for something which amazingly works perfectly. Apparently there is more to come, which can only be good news.

Listen again — ~205MB

Comments Off on Playlist 26.11.17

Sunday, 5th of November, 2017

Playlist 05.11.17 (8:01 pm)

Tonight we've got a special interview with amazing Sydney pianist Adrian Lim-Klumpes, and lots of other awesome new music.

LISTEN AGAIN for musical insights and beauty. FBi will stream on demand for you because they love you. You can podcast here.

Aesop Rock - Hot Dogs [Rhymesayers]
So great to have a new song from Aesop Rock, lyrical genius. Love the slow riff over which he almost languidly rhymes. It comes with a rad video, as does so much of his work, and the skating theme is connected to the song's release, for which all profits raised are going to cancer charity Grind For Life, setup by pro skater and cancer sufferer Mike Rogers. Good cause, good music.

Bing & Ruth - Weightout [4ad]
Gorgeous piano / ambient postrock stuff from pianist David Moore's group. This is deceptive music - you could imagine it's simple, pretty, floaty music, and it is - but it's got a lot of detail wrapped up in these sounds. It's quite rapturous.

Adrian Lim-Klumpes - Watch [Off]
Triosk - Not To Hurt You [Leaf]
Adrian Klumpes - weave in and out, weave in and out [Leaf]
3ofmillions - the hand of god [Space Dairy Records]
Klumpes Ahmad - Prologue [hellosQuare]
...interview with Adrian Lim-Klumpes...
Adrian Lim-Klumpes - Chase (under interview) [Off]
Adrian Lim-Klumpes - Control [Off]
It was a pleasure to interview Sydney pianist, jazz & experimental musician Adrian Lim-Klumpes on the show tonight. I've been a fan of his since his early days in Pivot (pre-PVT) and Triosk, and I've had him in on the show numerous times, but it's been a while - indeed recently I've seen a lot more of him because we play together in Tangents. We heard a nice array of Adrian's older music - starting in Triosk days with one of his compositions with their characteristic electronics, and jazz drums'bass, through his much earlier solo album from 2006, which showcased his first thrills at working with piano & electronics all on his own; then we heard from his other band from the interim, the explosive 3ofmillions, featuring Abel Cross of Pure Evil Trio on bass, and Finn Ryan on drums. And well before both were in Tangents together, Adrian collaborated with Shoeb Ahmad on a stunning album of poise & murk.
The new solo album from Adrian Lim-Klumpes, Yield, is based around the quite monumental idea of producing a new set of Preludes & Fugues for the piano, following in the footsteps of JS Bach. With the advent of the "well-tempered klavier", tuned so that it could play "in tune" in any key, Bach wrote a prelude & fugue for each key in the chromatic scale - major & minor for C, C#/Db, D, D#/Eb and so on. This means 12 keys in major and minor, and two pieces for each - a massive undertaking. Of course Bach was the master of the musical fugue, a canon in which a musical phrase circles round to repeat itself under ever more complex extensions and self-references. For these works (read the liner notes here) the fugues are interpreted from the original Spanish "fugare", meaning to chase, and so each even-numbered track involves electronic or compositional self-reflexion or layering of some sort. It's amazing hearing that only one of these was composed ahead of the studio session that produced the 10 tracks of this album.
Adrian launches this album at Foundry 616 on Wednesday the 29th of November, along with two other great Sydney jazz pianists, Mike Nock and Alister Spence.

Kcin – New England [Hospital Hill/Kcin Bandcamp]
Another album launch coming up even sooner - Nicholas Meredith is launching his excellent Onset album at 107 Projects this coming Wednesday the 8th of November. I've seen him performing this stuff live, and it's something to be witnessed - dense, heavy electronics triggered and sculpted live, along with percussion. Check out his Instagram for some pretty cool live videos.

Ptwiggs - Exuviae [Deep Seeded Records]
Ptwiggs & WA?STE - Anathema [CVLT]
Ptwiggs - Day of Wrath [Deep Seeded Records]
Sydney artist Phoebe Twiggs has just released her debut EP as Ptwiggs on local label Deep Seeded Records (their second release after the amazing Phile debut. It's heavy and dense, informed by bass music and techno and industrial, with a kind of classicist leaning to it with its track titling and some of the sampling. Similarly inclined is a track from this year collaborating with like-minded local WA?STE aka Felix Idle, released on international net label CVLT.

Circuit des Yeux - Paper Bag [Drag City]
Circuit des Yeux - Geyser [Drag City]
Circuit des Yeux - Acarina [Ba Da Bing/Circuit des Yeux Bandcamp]
Circuit des Yeux - Do The Dishes [Thrill Jockey]
Circuit des Yeux - Black Fly [Drag City]
I was lucky enough to interview the extraordinary Haley Fohr at the beginning of the year, ahead of her performance at 2017's Sydney Festival. Last year she released an album under the name Jackie Lynn, a kind of country pop concept album that was a bit of a departure from the more freeform, experimental songwriting of Circuit des Yeux. This year, now on Drag City, she returns to Circuit des Yeux after a somewhat bizarre neurological event, and she draws on that more straightforward songwriting without abandoning her longterm interests in sonic exploration, free musical structures and deep arrangements. Ever-present is her powerful baritone voice, and to me it's exciting seeing her development as a creator of moving, revelatory songs precisely without compromising her musical vision. Reaching For Indigo is everything we could've expected from her and more.

Chelsea Wolfe - Vex (feat. Aaron Turner) [Sargent House]
Chelsea Wolfe - After The Fall [Sargent House]
Chelsea Wolfe - Offering [Sargent House]
And finally, another powerful female voice in avant-garde songwriting. Chelsea Wolfe has long been associated with the metal world, guesting with predominantly instrumental post-metallers Russian Circles and more recently appearing with melodic hardcore/metal supergroup (of a sort) Mutoid Man. So it's not that surprising to hear the fierce roar of the legendary Aaron Turner (ISIS, Sumac, Old Man Gloom) on of the tracks on her new album. It's no more or less metal than her last couple of albums though - some heavy riffage, but also plenty of gothic folk. I would've liked to hear more of the electronic treatments from the last two albums, but it's a small complaint with such strong material.

Listen again — ~194MB

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