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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 July, 2020

Playlist 26.07.20 (7:35 pm)

Due to a confluence of new releases and recent releases, tonight's 'Fog is an all-Australian affair! And it ranges from experimental pop through complex electronic beats to ambient and acoustic music.

LISTEN AGAIN to some of the best local stuff. Stream on demand with FBi, podcast here.

Marcus Whale - Work Your Gaze [Marcus Whale Bandcamp]
Marcus Whale - Is He That Man [Marcus Whale Bandcamp]
Marcus (not singing) - To Be Possessed [Body Promise]
Tangents - Maze Crescent (Marcus Whale Remix) [Temporary Residence/Bandcamp]
Marcus (not singing) - Lila [Eternal]
Marcus Whale - No Bounds [Marcus Whale Bandcamp]
I've been hearing and supporting Sydney musician Marcus Whale's work on Utility Fog for over a decade - the first work he sent into the station was under the name Scissor Lock, as a teenager, and he was even releasing little limited edition 3" CDRs and such - sitting in a very experimental space, with noise/drone and free improv influences along with his classical training. Then with internet friend Travis Cook he formed Collarbones, and we were introduced to what a strong voice he has, and what a thought-provoking lyricist he is too. The duo with Travis, and his trio BV (Black Vanilla) with Lavurn Lee (Cassius Select) and Jared Beeler (DJ Plead) found him working with some of our most creative and talented beatmakers, and Marcus' own production skills and rhythmic invention bloomed as a result, forming the backbone of his music both under his own name and as "Marcus (not singing)". Hence heavy shuddering club bass and unusual but danceable cross-rhythms coexist with pastoral horn arrangements and avant-garde vocal melodies - much of it still performed by Marcus himself (although Jacques Emery contributes double bass to tonight's first selection). In the middle we hear two much more clubby tracks from the "(not singing)" alias, one released by FBi's brilliant Body Promise show, and one by Ptwiggs & Grasps_' Eternal, and I slipped in Marcus' remix of my quintet Tangents, which takes the folktronic kaleidoscope of the original into his sound-world.
Lyrically, Lucifer follows up the queer post-colonialist Australian history of 2016's Inland Sea with a study of the idea of Lucifer - the morninstar, the first fallen angel - as an avatar for queer identity, with tracks that focus on submission ("Work Your Gaze") and empowerment ("No Bounds"). It's a triumph, once again.

Ahm - Safe State [Anterograde]
Arrom - See How (Ahm Remix) [Provenance/Bandcamp]
Ahm - New Tricks [Provenance/Bandcamp]
Ahm - Circuit [Anterograde]
I first discovered Ahm (aka Andrew Huhtanen McEwan) through a pair of excellent remixes he did for Mellisa Valence aka Arrom, one of which was all drawn-out vocal glitchscapes, the other frenetic jungle beats. I'm glad to say that his new EP Thoughts Racing returns to the jungle and IDM - although last year's Why I Let You had some lovely intricate programming itself. The EP sees him return to Melbourne label Anteretrograde, and all four tracks have an emotive core, created during a period of grief and anxiety. So in some ways the bass and complex mashed up beats (no doubt informed by his background as a drummer) represent anxiety (viz "Thoughts Racing, Can't Sleep") but they're coloured and tamed by the melodic synths which bring out the human emotions behind the music.

Laurence Pike - Death Of Science [The Leaf Label/Bandcamp]
Szun Waves - Slow Motion [The Leaf Label/Bandcamp]
Laurence Pike - Embers [The Leaf Label/Bandcamp]
The third solo album from Laurence Pike on The Leaf Label was recorded in the midst of Australia's worst bushfire season ever. Developed over a few weeks, the tracks were recorded in a single day, and to my ears these pieces represent a real advancement in an already impressive artistic modus operandi. Prophecy inevitably sees Pike ruminating on the sociopolitical factors that brought about the apocalyptic bushfire season. It's a bleakly sardonic comment on how very predictable - and comprehensively predicted - the bushfires, even the scale of them, had been, and of course how shocking they nevertheless were, when even in the inner suburbs of Sydney we had white ash falling. "Death Of Science" evokes a tribal atmosphere with slightly frantic percussion and gutteral vocal snippets, while the gorgeous "Embers" is strangely peaceful, but unresolved, with its striving, loping
piano loops, upwards-seeking vocal snippets and scattered percussion. Oh - and in between, a surprise EP from Szun Waves, Pike's trio with UK composer/synth guy Luke Abbott and jazz sax player Jack Wyllie (Portico Quartet). "Slow Motion" was previously only available on the vinyl version of their last album - a real slow burner.

Gregory Paul Mineef - Through This [Cosmicleaf/Bandcamp]
We last heard Wollongong composer Gregory Paul Mineef at the start of the year from an album of manipulated electric piano & synth work. His heartstring-pulling new EP is felt-muted upright piano. Both pieces are very subtle - seemingly simple and minimalist, but slowly more baroque in a Keith Jarret-style jazz way. Don't miss this!

(((o|o))) - when geography ruled [(((o|o))) Bandcamp]
(((o|o))) - a question of safety [(((o|o))) Bandcamp]
(((o|o))) - the creature of badlands [(((o|o))) Bandcamp]
The artist behind the unpronounceable (((o|o))) prefers to remain anonymous, but is Australian. Their new album the quiet game builds on the creepy ambience of last year's EP pas de bébé - it's patient music that refuses to move too fast, and slowly unfurls its evocative psychgeographical soundscapes - sometimes pretty synth pads, sometimes pulsating synth bass, sometimes pretty and sometimes disquieting. From the EP we heard a piece whose near-static drones and deep breaths obscure the line between peace and fear...

D.C Cross - Loch Ness Sasquatch [Darren Cross Bandcamp]
D.C Cross - Light Autumn Winds [Darren Cross Bandcamp]
D.C Cross - Black Horse, Friend [Darren Cross Bandcamp]
Finishing with something from Sydney stalwart D.C. Cross, aka Darren Cross of '90s-'00s indie/electronic darlings Gerling and dark folk duo Jep and Dep. As with last year's Ecstatic Racquet, new album Terabithian finds Cross in a mostly contemplative mood, evoking John Fahey's Tacoma records and the British folk revivalists with stirringly clear fingerstyle guitar, but embeddeding it in washes of reverb and well-judged field recordings. Pure pleasurable listening.

Listen again — ~198MB

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Sunday, 19th of July, 2020

Playlist 19.07.20 (8:59 pm)

Mysterious dark music and bursts of light tonight. It's not a post-classical or folktronic or electro-acoustic or techno or idm playlist here - but it's a bit of all of that.

LISTEN AGAIN to unearth the mysteries... Stream on demand over @ FBi is messed up because I made a mistake - but you can go ahead and podcast it here in fullllll.

Kaboom Karavan - Kaban [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
Kaboom Karavan - Kobo [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
Kaboom Karavan - KipKap [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
Kaboom Karavan - Silk Skin Armor [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
It's been more than 6 years since Bram Bosteels' last album as Kaboom Karavan - so I was quite surprised to see this appear on my radar. I discovered him sometime between the previous two albums, both of which generate a sense of unease and fascination through the use of ancient instruments, home-made instruments, disembodied voices and electronics, orchestrated in a weirdly out-of-time musical vernacular. It's part circus music, part olde-world folk - and tbh the tag I use most with the great Miasmah suits it best: acoustic doom. In the time since his last album, Bosteels lost his father to a rare disease, and that shocking event pushed him to complete this music. Disjointed and weirdly alienated as it is, this music seems perfect for these strange times.

Michel Banabila - Humans and Nonhumans [Tapu Records Bandcamp]
From Belgium to the Netherlands, and another artist who's merging "world" music with electronics, as he has for some decades now. Michel Banabila recently put together a wonderful compilation called To Yemen With Love as a fundraiser for on-the-ground charities working in war-torn Yemen - including Arabic, European and international artists working in traditional genres as well as electronic & ambient. I contributed a piece of lightly processed cello in fact. Following that massive effort, Michel has released a short EP of material recorded in a new setup - in the park outside his house. These tracks feature the sounds of nature in amongst ambient loops, alien wind instruments, and dubby rhythms.

Sabina Covarrubias - We are alive / I am loved [Elli Records/Bandcamp]
Sabina Covarrubias - Rhythmic instincts / I kissed my land / Nature rituals [Elli Records/Bandcamp]
During COVID-19 lockdown, Emanuele Battisti's Elli Records has produced 16 varied releases in quick turnaround for their "In the room" series. I'll be playing another later in the show, but here we have two excerpts for a remarkable piece of organic-sounding electro-acoustic work from Paris-based Mexican sound artist Sabina Covarrubias. After bachelor studies in Mexico, she completed a Masters in Paris in computer-assisted composition and ethnomusicology, and is now an associated researcher at CICM (Centre d'Informatique et Création Musicale). This work, entitled Fertility, combines many of her interests at once, using electro-acoustic technices such as spectral processing and spatialization alongside sounds and structures from ambient techno, as well as borrowing from Senegalese compositional traditions. I love the sound-world she has created, the very natural, bubbling way that it progresses, and particularly the way the processed vocals coexist with the percussion and other instrumentation.

Hidden Valley Logging Company - Northern Plub Blossom [Lillerne Tapes]
M. Sage - minno to taste [Lillerne Tapes]
We were just talking a couple of weeks about how great Lillerne Tapes are, the Chicago label that just released the new album from Melbourne-based sonic genius Yunzero. And now they've come out with a massive 38 track Fundraiser Compilation, benefiting two local Chicago organisations: Black-led LGBTQ centre Brave Space Alliance and community-based food suppliers Urban Growers Collective. Yunzero appears here, along with the label boss at his previous label .jpeg Artefacts, Other Joe. We'll be hearing more from .jpeg Artefacts shortly, but here's a couple of other tracks from the comp, starting with a favourite discovery from last year, Vancouver-based Cameron Everatt's Hidden Valley Logging Company. Droney pads give way to minimalist jittery beats, in keeping the mystery-laden feel of tonight's show. And then keeping with the theme of nature meeting electronica, we've got chirping birds and beats from Chicago's own M. Sage.

Cypha - Sequence 1 [forthcoming on .jpeg Artefacts]
OBA - Side A (excerpt) [forthcoming on .jpeg Artefacts]
Other Joe - New Years Kiss [forthcoming on .jpeg Artefacts]
As mentioned, Other Joe, who runs boutique Melbourne label .jpeg Artefacts, has a lovely track appearing on Lillerne Tapes' comp. Joe got in touch recently to send me some forthcoming sounds from his excellent label, and he's given me his blessing to play you some previews. First is a super-impressive debut of idm-leaning bassy breakbeat from Cypha, a young artist who doesn't even have a web presence yet. Next, some ambient jazz drum'n'bass from Jordan Obarzanek aka OBA, previously released on .jpeg Artefacts and also Phinery. and finally, some gorgeous glitchy piano and found sounds from Other Joe himself.

Annika Moses - Amazing blissful moment (fearful receiver) [Tura Adapts 2020 Commissioning]
With live performances on hold for the foreseeable future, essential Perth-based contemporary music organisation Tura have turned to commissioning new works through their Tura Adapts program. This piece is from emerging sound-artist Annika Moses, who I've featured before probably in her guises as Nika Mo or great statue. This work will appear on Bandcamp in a bit, but for now you can experience it at the Tura site. Here matter-of-fact poetry meets contemporary composition and sound-art - all keen interests of Moses. I'm very glad to be able to play it for you tonight.

Emra Grid - A Platform [Opal Tapes]
Continuing with the spoken word theme, albeit here sampling an external work, is mysterious Berlin-based artist Emra Grid (who seems from their web presence to be Sean Pineiro). Their more ambient inclinations give way on this EP to bass-heavy industrial techno influences, on this track enhanced by sections from a reading of Sylvia Plath's "Tulips", a poem about lying in a hospital room recovering from an operation. It's evocative and disquieting - the whole EP is recommended, including Swiss artist Martina Lussi's remix of this track, which uses additional excerpts from the poem.

Wauwatosa - Bright Star (Kcin Remix) [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Transnational collaboration of a sort here, with that inescapable bloke Kcin on remix duties for Norwegian experimental pop duo Wauwatosa. Kcin takes their usually quite pretty sounds into his brooding industrial electronic sound-world, going all drum'n'bass on us in fact, but as the track progresses, trumpet and twinkly synths bring joy from the chaos.

Wytchings - Viet Drift [Lazy Thinking/Bandcamp]
Continuing with the somewhat industrial sounds, here's some incredible new work from new Sydney artist Jenny Trinh aka Wytchings. Her debut release was a quite ambient work of underwater electronics, but here things are a lot tougher, for want of a better word. "Viet Drift" is from forthcoming EP Oculus, which sees her exorcising the trauma of having been racially assaulted as a teenager. It's intense and brilliant work.

Moor Mother & billy woods - Furies [Adult Swim Singles 2020]
Moor Mother & Yatta - WE [Moor Mother Bandcamp]
Moor Mother & Yatta - 27 [Moor Mother Bandcamp]
Camae Ayewa aka Moor Mother has been on a roll throughout lockdown, releasing many different collaborative and solo works on her Bandcamp. One of those appears tonight, but before that, an absolute dream team duo of Moor Mother with billy woods - obviously one half of Armand Hammer and also responsible for two of my favourite releases last year. The two are perfectly matched on the apocalyptically dark "Furies", release through the ongoing Adult Swim Singles series. And then, Moor Mother teams up with Sierra Leonean-American artist Yatta, whose work takes in hip-hop, jazz, folk, and experimental art of all sorts. She's had two releases on Purple Tape Pedigree, and as with all great collaborations you can clearly hear both artists in the insane concoctions put together on this mini-album DIAL UP. Check it out.

Ben Peers - Variation One [Elli Records/Bandcamp]
Ben Peers - Variation Eight [Elli Records/Bandcamp]
OK, so back to Elli Records' 16-release "In the room" series that has recently finished up - here's UK algorithmic musician Ben Peers with Eight Variations - specifically the first and last. It's the kind of stuff that happily burbles along in the background, but it's got plenty enough darkness and edge to hold the attention in the foreground too, as each iteration varies aspects of the melodic and rhythmic elements.

Taraamoon - زَهازْ (Zahāz) [Low-Zi Records Bandcamp]
Just last week I played the first released track from Taraamoon, the Farsi-based electronic pop project from Nima Aghiani and Sara Bigdeli Shamloo of 9T Antiope. This beautiful song was already on their SoundCloud, and now it's available from Bandcamp too. Again I cannot tell you much about the song, but it's exquisite.

Listen again — ~198MB

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Sunday, 12th of July, 2020

Playlist 12.07.20 (8:34 pm)

TONIGHT we have some indie/pop/folkshoegaze epics and miniatures, some stunning contemporary musique concrète and sound-art, and some leftfield post-classical as well.

LISTEN AGAIN, immerse yourself! Stream on demand from FBi, podcast here.

Sufjan Stevens - My Rajneesh [Asthmatic Kitty/Bandcamp]
It's pretty exciting to have a new Sufjan Stevens album "proper" coming soon. Since Carrie & Lowell 5 years ago, there've been singles, remixes & reworkings, and collaborations such as the recent one with his stepdad Lowell Brams - but here's another typical dense, through-composed, philosophical/historical/political genre-bending work from the master. The single "America" is an epic, but here on the b-side we have another long one, not appearing on the album, about an Indian guru who came to America, formed a cult and tried to build a utopian city in Oregon - and it all came apart, resulting ultimately in the largest bioterrorism attack on US soil. So Sufjan writes a song about it which of course is sweet and melancholy and bombastic, indie and folk and electronic and everything. Ah Sufjan *weeps*

Taraamoon - شیزان (Shezān) [Low-Zi Records Bandcamp]
Here's a new project from Paris-based Iranian musicians Nima Aghiani and Sara Bigdeli Shamloo, best known to listeners of this show as 9T Antiope. The noise & abstractions of that group are mostly switched out here for experimental electronic pop, with Sara Shamloo singing in Persian rather than the English that features in most of 9T Antiope's work. I can't tell you much about the subject matter of these songs, but the music is absolutely beautiful - this one's from earlier this year, but their SoundCloud also features a new song.

Molly Joyce - Who Are You [New Amsterdam/Bandcamp]
Molly Joyce - Breaking And Entering [New Amsterdam/Bandcamp]
Two tracks from the debut album by Molly Joyce, who has an impaired left hand due to a childhood car accident, and has found the ideal instrument for her body in the vintage Magnus toy electric organ. These instruments, like some accordions, have chord buttons on the left and a full keyboard for her right hand, and with these - along with various electronics and her voice - she creates gorgeous widescreen songs which themselves explore the experience of disability. The songs are absolutely transporting, due to the combination of the sounds of the organ, the production techniques, and the fantastic composition.

Jesu - never there for you [JK Broadrick self-released/Bandcamp]
Last week on the show we heard from JK Broadrick's industrial techno incarnation JK Flesh. This week it's the turn of the beloved Jesu, his shoegaze metal and increasingly electronic shoegaze band/alias. Broadrick of course has an incredibly broad history, from being involved at the start of Napalm Death, to inventing industrial metal with Godflesh, to his world-dub-hip-hop with Kevin Martin as Techno Animal (and now Zonal). It's wonderful to have Jesu back though - always blissful with just enough edge to it, on this non-album track combining looped vocals, shoegaze guitars and a drum'n'bass-influenced beat. Bring on the full album!

Ai Aso - I'll do it my way [Ideologic Organ]
Ai Aso - Gone [Ideologic Organ]
Electrifying, simple, powerful acid folk from the wonderful Ai Aso, who has long been a collaborator with the likes of Boris (who appear on a couple of ambient tracks here) and Stephen O'Malley (whose imprint Ideologic Organ released this album). This music is in the vein of Eddie Marcon, Tenniscoats etc, of deceptively simple Japanese electric folk, with beauifully direct songs and strange things going on around the edges (the angularly discordant solo in the latter part of the first song for instance). Incredible.

Boris - Interlude [Boris Bandcamp]
I think the new Boris album took some people by surprise, since they have decided - for now at least - to release it only digitally. NO is vintage Boris - noise metal, psych, catchy songs, crazy solos, downtuned doomy slow riffs. It's awesome, but it ends with 3 minutes of beautiful shoegazey guitar loops and whispers of Wata's vocals, which seemed the perfect segue from Ai Aso.

Bérangère Maximin - The Broken Shoe [Karl Records/Bandcamp]
Bérangère Maximin - Knitting in the Air (feat. Christian Fennesz, guitar) [Sub Rosa]
Bérangère Maximin - Elpis [Atlas Réalisastions/Bandcamp]
Bérangère Maximin - Walking Barefoot, Imaginary Quintet [Karl Records/Bandcamp]
A few works now from the ever-surprising, brilliant musician Bérangère Maximin. Her new album comes out from Berlin label Karl Records, following released on labels as diverse as Tzadik, Sub Rosa, Crammed Discs and Craig Leon's Atlas Réalisastions. I still think of Maximin as a musique concrète composer and sound-artist, and those elements are still present on this new album - field recordings from around city parks and abandoned buildings recorded throughout Europe feature here, manipulated in various ways, alongside all sorts of electronic elements. There are even drum machines and sequenced synthesizers, allbeit treated in unusual fashions - but then, her 2012 album No one is an island featured various guitarists (Christian Fennesz appeared tonight) and even leaned into song-forms with Bérangère's vocals at times - like many of the artists featured tonight, she is not one to be pinned down. I strongly recommend connecting with this album and whatever you can find of her back catalogue.

Marina Rosenfeld - One [softl, re-released Room40/Bandcamp]
Marina Rosenfeld - Four (Fever) [softl, re-released Room40/Bandcamp]
Lawrence English & Room40 are doing god's work here by releasing two out-of-print albums from the great Marina Rosenfeld. I'm very fond in particular of Joy of Fear, which I have the original limited CD of. Now you can hear this masterpiece of sound-art & composition, based around Rosenfeld's extensive collection of acetates - one-off records of the sort dance producers cut for DJing, here often featuring Rosenfeld's piano and cello, or that of collaborators such as Okkyung Lee. Lee's cello and Rosenfeld's piano appear alongside crackling, manipulated vinyl, in works of beautiful aural sorcery. Not to be missed.

Leah Kardos - Retracing Your Lines [bigo & twigetti/Bandcamp]
Luke Wyland - Hand Gestures [bigo & twigetti/Bandcamp]
English post-classical label bigo & twigetti have put together many creative compilations in the past. With Perceptions they are again progressively releasing a project, a few tracks at a time. It's all about the piano - played straight, or processed with delays or granular synthesis, composed or improvised. I gave you a special sneak preview of one track tonight, from longtime UFog fave, London-based ex-pat Aussie Leah Kardos - arpeggios and scale patterns that might be associated with piano practice are slowly layered with delays and low organ, and made more baroque with higher, faster patterns as the track rises to a sparkling climax. Meanwhile, American multi-instrumentalist Luke Wyland, whose freak-folk band AU was a favourite round these parts years ago, here revists territory from his LWW project for Leaf, with playfully improvised piano gestures subtly manipulated in post-production.

Drexler - Ivory Tape [Rhodium Publishing/Bandcamp]
Drexler - Ashes [Rhodium Publishing/Bandcamp]
I've been talking with now London-based Sydney-born musician Adrian Leung for a while, and I'm super pleased that his debut album as Drexler is now coming out later this week. It draws on his background as a classically-trained pianist and violinist, but equally on his Hong Kong Chinese heritage and times spent in Japan. Tracks on Handles remind me of the joyful mélange of post-classical, postrock and electronica from many Japanese artists, as well as the Rachels' mixture of classical & postrock, and many contemporary post-classical artists. It's a great achievement, worth your time.

Julia Kent, Seb Rochford and David Coulter - From Isolation 6 01 [Trestle Records/Bandcamp]
Cecilia Forssberg, James Hammond & Keir Vine - From Isolation 9 01 [Trestle Records/Bandcamp]
It's been a minute since we checked in with Trestle Records' From Isolation series, and I need to remind you that they're still releasing awesome one-off collaborations like these! So let's finish with two remotely-created collabs. From From Isolation 6 we've got New York cellist frequently appearing in UFog playlists Julia Kent, with Scottish musician Seb Rochford of Polar Bear and more recently Pulled By Magnets, and British composer David Coulter. As you'd expect, woody cello, jazzy postrocky beats, lovely textures.
And finally, from the recent From Isolation 9 we have classically-trained singer & drone musician Cecilia Forssberg's gorgeous vocals & electronics with the guitar & bass from 33-33 co-founder James Hammond and the synth & electronics of Portico Quartet's & Keir Vine.

Listen again — ~198MB

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Sunday, 5th of July, 2020

Playlist 05.06.20 (5:30 pm)

We're halfway through this year, but it feels like it's been a whole year already. I'm sure time will only compress more as we go on.
Tonight we have a variety of bass-centric music including a fair bit of techno and percussive sounds. It was the fourth Bandcamp Friday (not yet clear whether the last!?) and a small amount tonight comes from that big, now monthly, release day - but more will creep into the next few weeks I suspect!

LISTEN AGAIN... with your head and with your legs! Stream on demand from FBi, podcast here...

Yunzero - I Didn't Smudge So Easily [Lillerne Tapes]
Hyde - Ox Hill [Nice Music]
Yunzero - Orchard 1 [.jpeg Artefacts]
Yunzero - Mondegreen [Lillerne Tapes]
As Yunzero, Melbourne's Jim Sellars has released some of the most mind-warping music to come out of Australia in the last few years. Last year's Ode to Mud on .jpeg Artefacts further blurred and warped the post-everything electronica of 2016's brilliant Ox Hill released by Nice Music as Hyde - itself a few twists of the Möbius strip along from his earlier beat tapes as Electric Sea Spider. Now he's gone international, his latest album released by the quietly essential Lillerne Tapes, with the strangely apt title Blurry Ant. It's more of the same (thankfully) - seemingly ambient interludes morphing into bass-heavy head-nodders built out of off-kilter sliding samples, chopped YouTube discoveries, half-audible raves, but the strange genius is that the dirty, out-of-focus ingredients are diced and plated up so very cleanly.

Azu Tiwaline - Tessiture [Livity Sound/Bandcamp]
Azu Tiwaline - Omok [I.O.T. Records/Bandcamp]
Azu Tiwaline - Red Viper [I.O.T. Records/Bandcamp]
Azu Tiwaline - Tight Wind ft. Cinna Peyghamy [Livity Sound/Bandcamp]
I was so excited to discover the music of Azu Tiwaline this week, via her Magnetic Service EP released by Bristol label Livity Sound. Only a few months ago her two-part album Draw Me A Silence came out through French label I.O.T. Records. Both draw heavily on her Amazigh roots in Saharan Tunisia, as well as her "other" roots as a DJ and producer of techno, dub & hip-hop as Loan. She has an astonishing sense not only of rhythm and techno/dub production, but also of pacing and structure, honed no doubt in years of DJing, and it's wonderful hearing that applied to these traditional rhythms and sounds (at times flute melodies and field recordings can be heard too). Both double album & EP are essential IMHO - head over to her Bandcamp.

Dominik Eulberg - Siebenschläfer (Robag Wruhme Remix) [!K7/Bandcamp]
Now getting even more blissful with a melodic, pastoral take on Dominik Eulberg's nature-loving techno & house, from the one & only Robag Wruhme. I've been a fan of Gabor Schablitzki since his idm/acid/drill'n'bass/glitch work in Beefcake, and it took me a while to warm to the 4/4 sounds he made as Wighnomy Brothers and Robag Wruhme, but nowadays I'm a total convert, and I love the head-nodding warmth of the groove here as well as the sharp shocks inserted here and there...

JK Flesh - Dissociation (Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement Extended Remix) [Hospital Productions/Bandcamp]
JK Flesh - Dissociation [Hospital Productions/Bandcamp]
JK Flesh has long been the alias of Justin K Broadrick of Godflesh, Jesu, Techno Animal, Zonal et al for some of his solo work, and in the last few years it's coalesced as mostly a project for intense industrial techno. One of the original JK Flesh techno releases came out from Dominick Fernow's Hospital Productions in 2016, and this new album unearths some more of that early, raw material. Fernow himself took to this particular track in his ambient techno Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement guise, and as you can hear afterwards it hardly resembles the acidic, paranoid original. Great stuff all round.

AURA - Salt [Early Reflex]
Here's some sludgey techno that understands the dichotomy of the drum'n'bass continuum - slow-moving bass, chittering percussion and acid squelches. Sydney DJ Daniel Curtis's debut EP as AURA is released by excellent new Italian label Early Reflex this week (their first single-artist release), nodding its head to the influences of dub and industrial on club music. An auspicious beginning.

Askham & S.Tonkin - Idle Pulse [unreleased]
And while we're on Sydney techno, here's an unreleased track from the dynamic duo of Askham & S.Tonkin, aka Pip Dolan and Sarah Tonkin of Construct, and previously known as Blank Transit. This is percussive techno that patiently unwinds into a thundering, pulsating morass with dub echoes and gnarly pads in the middle. It starts as it means to go on, and builds more and more as it continues.

Franck Vigroux - Styx [raster-media/Bandcamp]
Franck Vigroux - Rhinocéros [Aesthetical]
Franck Vigroux - Island shores [raster-media/Bandcamp]
In a way it's surprising that this is French composer Franck Vigroux's first work with minimal glitchtronica label raster-media, given how perfectly these electronic tones, rhythmic bass impulses and flittery percussion fit with the label's aesthetic. Vigroux's tendency towards growling analogue distortion still comes out at times - sometimes pointing towards industrial rock but equally at his collaboration with the late Mika Vainio. That approach is heard on last year's Totem, released by another German label Aesthetical, but this new one of a solitary affair - its title Ballades sur lac gelé is a pun on the French word "Balades" - as such it would mean "rambles over a frozen lake". As well as making electronic music, Vigroux is a guitarist and composer for theatre.

Synalegg - Barricades [Conditional/Bandcamp]
Synalegg - Commuters [Conditional/Bandcamp]
Staying in France, here are a couple of new tracks from Synalegg, who uses every digital processing technique in the book along with complex programming to create his frenetic sounds. Previous releases (see his Bandcamp) have tended to be short sound experiments, so this is where they turn into full-blown tracks, and it's glitchy idm of the highest order.

Kcin - PERFORM-RAM2.demo [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Taxpayer - Building X (feat. Brayden Condie) [stream on SoundCloud]
Sig Nui Gris - The End of Sig Nu Gris [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
For the fourth Bandcamp Friday, Melbourne's Spirit Level label released their second Kindred Spirits label compilation, featuring pretty much all of the label's artists. Tonight we heard UFog regular, Sydney's Kcin, with typical industrial processed percussion, and something beautiful and floaty from Melbourne's Erin Hyde aka Sig Nui Gris - hopefully not actually "the end" of.

In between is an impressive debut from Taxpayer, aka Sydney artist Lizzie Nagy, whose art has adorned many gig posters, album covers, minicomics and public spaces. "Building X" is a sludgey piece of dronerocktronica (there, another new genre!) featuring Brayden Condie's guitar and sampled drums from Brisbane's Ultra Material.

Listen again — ~206MB

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