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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, 7th of March, 2021

Playlist 07.03.21 (8:31 pm)

Many examples of the interface between physical and digital, acoustic and electronic tonight.

LISTEN AGAIN for the highs and lows, ebbs and flows. Podcast here, stream on demand from FBi.

Machinefabriek - MD EV IZ (with Martin Dosh, Els Vandeweyer, Ingar Zach) [Esc.rec/Bandcamp/Bandcamp]
Machinefabriek - AB TB YO (with Alexandra Bellon, Tim Barnes, Yuko Oshima) [Esc.rec/Bandcamp/Bandcamp]
Machinefabriek - VT JW KW (with Vasco Trilla, Jim White, Karen Willems) [Esc.rec/Bandcamp/Bandcamp]
Machinefabriek - SA AJ ET (with Shane Aspegren, Anja Jacobsen, Eric Thielemans) [Esc.rec/Bandcamp/Bandcamp]
The remarkable new album from Rutger Zuydervelt aka Machinefabriek, With Drums, could be seen as a successor to his 2019 album With Voices, or conversely of his self-performed Drum Solos. Mostly, though, it's an unexpected extension of his large ouevre of sound art, and his penchant for collaboration - 24 short tracks, each collaged from contributed recordings from three drummers (a total of 42 drummers are featured, with many recognizable names appearing). This is not predominantly rhythmic music - some contributions feature tuned percussion, or bowed percussion, some are free jazz flourishes, and some do coalesce into grooves. Zuydervelt's command of sound and space is such that these disparate contributed recordings are sculpted into 37 minutes of music that flows as a single work, which is never less than gripping, and charming.

Jerusalem In My Heart - Qalouli [Constellation/Bandcamp]
As the worldwide COVID-19 lockdowns set in last year, iconic Montréal label Constellation created their first digital-only series of releases, Corona Borealis, with single tracks of varying length (10 minutes on average), each with an accompanying video work, with all funds going straight to the artists. Radwan Ghazi Moumneh's Jerusalem In My Heart is perfect for this project, as it has always existed as an audiovisual collaboration with filmmaker Erin Weisgerber. Moumneh's track "Qalouli" is 6 minutes of beautiful glitched Arabic strings.

Innode - Odessa [Editions Mego/Bandcamp]
Innode - Rote Wueste [Editions Mego/Bandcamp]
Longtime associate of Mego / Editions Mego Stefan Németh co-founded the great Radian among other groups, and returns to Editions Mego with the second album of his Innode project. Here he's joined by two drummers - fellow Austrian Bernhard Breuer and Steven Hess, who's equally known for the black/drone metal of Locrian, the post-metal of RLYR, ambient/postrock with groups like Pan•American and Anjou, and the improv/sound-art of ensembles like Haptic (Hess also appears on Machinefabriek's With Drums). Innode combines sputtering electronics and dub hypnotism with crackling live drumming - I can't get enough of this new album, Syn.

Loefah - Candy [Bandcamp]
Dubstep don Loefah has been sneaking out unreleased tracks on his Bandcamp lately, as well as great early tunes (you can find Mud, Ruffage, Root and The Goat Stare all there - all eternal foundations in the dubstep canon). The latest, "Candy", combines an oblique spoken sample with stripped-bare bass & beat in the style of those classics.

Goth-Trad - Apes [DEEP MEDi/Bandcamp]
Goth-Trad - Skin No Longer Scars feat. dälek [Back To Chill/Bandcamp]
Japanese producer Goth-Trad found himself a dubstep insider quite early in the game, with some essential releases on DEEP MEDi among others. Prior to this he was creating madcap IDM and weird noise, and he happily jumps around genres still. He's just retured to DEEP MEDi with a much-desired VIP of his 2012 track "Airbreaker", and I love the triplet-ridden flipside "Apes". Through his own Back To Chill label, on Bandcamp he's just been digitally releasing a bunch of back-catalogue and unreleased old material, and this week the originally very limited Psionics got the re-release treatment, including the two collaborative tracks originally only found on vinyl - one with Boris and one with noise-hop legend dälek.

John Roberts - Nothing [Brunette Editions/Bandcamp]
Last year, John Roberts deviated the furthest he has from the dancefloor with the sumptuous sound-art of Can Thought Exist Without The Body? For 2021 he's just put out the second themed single, "Nothing" (it follows "Zero"), which is a beautiful bit of gliding deep house which he does so well. Hopefully some more empty/circular titles to come?

effe effe - Self sprung [NeMu]
effe effe - Eight pointed star [NeMu]
Milan musician Federica Furlani is a violist, but as effe effe she brings her viola into the electronic world. On her lovely debut album Tuning scapes the viola appears with layered, processed recordings alongside programmed beats.

Matt Mehlan - Slow Dance #1111 [Shinkoyo/Bandcamp]
Matt Mehlan - Slow Dance #0121 [Shinkoyo/Bandcamp]
It seems like only yesterday (but actually a couple of months ago) that I featured the brilliant Skeletons on the show. Now main Skeleton Matt Mehlan is back on his Shinkoyo label with Slow Dances, an album which is also a card game and a choreography work... Confused? So am I, but it's great music - instrumental, mostly electronic, with strange injections of jazz solos and more ambient segments.

Warped Dreamer - ixwele [Consouling Sounds]
Warped Dreamer - Camphor Bush [Consouling Sounds]
The provenance of the four members of Warped Dreamer couldn't be stronger: Arve Henriksen is the brilliant trumpeter & sometimes wordless singer with Norwegian improv masters Supersilent, and Stian Westerhus has played with Jaga Jazzist, Ulver and many others. On the Belgian side, Rhodes player Jozef Dumoulin and drummer Teun Verbruggen are part of the improv/electronic/noise act The Bureau of Atomic Tourism. Their new record Live at Bimhuis has the highs offered by such great musicianship - magically soft melody work, intense full ensemble work, and a mess of self-sampling electronics.

Benjamin Finger - Children Rhyme [KrysaliSound/Bandcamp]
Benjamin Finger - Auditory Colors [KrysaliSound/Bandcamp]
Also from Norway, Benjamin Finger represents a different school of music - electronics and acoustic music wedded to a more ambient end, generally. His new solo album Auditory Colors explores synaesthesia, with music that's intended to stimulate the visual sensorium as well as the audio. Frequent collaborator Inga-Lil Farstad's voice appears on the title track, as do unidentified children's voices elsewhere. It's deceptively dense and deep work as always with Finger.

Kirk Barley - Lake of Gold [Health]
Lately we've heard a lot of work from Kirk Barley with drummer Matt Davies, so it's interesting to hear his delicate processed electronics on their own for new single Lake of Gold / Primer. Great stuff as ever.

Other Joe - More Hauntings ft Nico Niquo [Nice Setting/Bandcamp]
Melbourne musician Joseph Buchan is Other Joe, a shapeshifting project which often features the piano alongside contemporary electronics. He runs the excellent .jpeg Artefacts label, but his new EP Champagne is released by fellow Melbourne label Nice Setting, including a delightful CD edition. It's beautiful, twinkly but not twee, including an appearance from neo-new-age artist Nico Niquo.

part timer - after [Bandcamp]
The final Bandcamp EP for a little while from Melbourne's part timer is another collection of delicate piano & electronics called before, during, after. The releases he's doled out for us since October feature some of his best work - his sense of melody and arrangement is highly impressive, and there's a murmuring of the clicky rhythmic elements from his early folktronica in the background at times too. Hopefully he gets an album together soon and gets it released by someone for more prominence than his own Bandcamp and this radio show...

Ashleigh Hazel - Gemini [Bandcamp]
Canberra-based experimental musician Benjamin Drury has just unveiled their new project Ashleigh Hazel, with this new single "Gemini", a soft piece of layered guitars, field recordings and half-heard vocals. Evocative and nostalgic-feeling.

Listen again — ~203MB


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