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

Sunday, 25th of April, 2021

Playlist 25.04.21 (11:36 pm)

We've got a trio of excellent releases from Denovali out at the end of this month, plus influential industrial, grinding gothic riffage, and electronic all-sorts tonight.

LISTEN AGAIN before it's too late! It's never too late... Podcast here, stream on demand @ FBi.

Dictaphone - Your Reign is Over [Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dictaphone - rising minimal [City Centre Offices/Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dictaphone - rattle feat. Mariechen Danz [Sonic Pieces/Denovali/Bandcamp]
Oliver Doerell - Hands [Oxmose/Bandcamp]
Dictaphone - Il Grande Silenzio [Denovali/Bandcamp]
The first of three new releases from German label Denovali to be released this coming Friday, the 30th of April, comes from the lovely Dictaphone. Their previous, and first on Denovali, came out in 2017, but their history goes back a lot further. Convened by Belgian multi-instrumentalist Oliver Doerell, their characteristic sound is derived from the combination of warm, organic instrumentation with warm dub-inflected electronics. In particular, the clarinet of Roger Döring, fluttering and arcing over the burbling rhythms, is essential to what makes Dictaphone so special. A little after they began, German genre-crossing violinist Alex Stolze joined, and these two instruments lend a neo-classical feel to the group's aesthetic, which probably had something to do with their move from beloved, now defunct electronic label City Centre Offices to Monique Recknagel's wonderful Sonic Pieces for their third album, Poems from a rooftop, quite a magical affair. As well as the post-classical-meets-glitch of Swod (with pianist Stephan Wöhrmann), Doerell has collaborated with Hood's Chris Adams, and released a solo album in 2019, my life with M., which sounds like the electronic elements of Dictaphone pushed up a notch or two. The new Dictaphone album Goats & Distortions 5 (yes, it's their 5th) is everything you'd want from a Dictaphone album - acoustic basslines, bubbling clarinet, shimmering violin and snippets of vocals.

LTO - Derwyddon [Denovali/Bandcamp]
LTO - Contar [Injazero/Bandcamp]
LTO - Tharsis [Denovali/Bandcamp]
One of the members of the mysterious post-dubstep collective Old Apparatus, each of whom make singular music solo as well as (occasionally) together, LTO carries on the mystery of Old Apparatus with little to identify himself beyond blurry photographs and the knowledge he's from Bristol. Old Apparatus were always more from the dancefloor than of the dancefloor, and LTO's music has only taken him further from beats & basslines as its bread & butter - albeit still with deep bass and percussive sounds at times. It's very evocative, and less noisy than, say, the post-dancefloor music of Vex'd's Roly Porter - but, true to the beguiling work of Old Apparatus, it's immersive and surprising, absolutely worth your time. I played one early solo LTO track in the middle, a kind of jittery dubby techno number.

Dalhous - Emersion [Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dalhous - Success is Her Sensuality [Blackest Ever Black/Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dalhous - Sight Of Hirta [Blackest Ever Black/Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dalhous - Bahy-Oh-Feed-Bak [Blackest Ever Black/Denovali/Bandcamp]
Dalhous - Phantasies From The Schema [Denovali/Bandcamp]
Primarily the work of Marc Dall, at times with the presumably pseudonymous Alex Ander, Dalhous spent much of its existence released on the UK label Blackest Ever Black until its untimely closure a couple of years ago. Their catalogue has now been taken over by Denovali, who are finally releasing Vol. 2 of The Composite Moods Collection, which takes off, inverted, from where 2016's Vol. 1 left off, showing a fraught relationship from the perspective of the photographed subject from that album. Dalhous's work has always been influenced by the history of psychiatry, with beautiful but at times anxious and disturbing musical invocations of mental states. At their best, the lush synthscapes of Jean Michel Jarre, the beats of early Autechre, Boards of Canada & Bola combine in a post-dubstep space to create something enthralling and timeless. The latest two albums push into a more cinematic space, less concerned with individual, structured tracks, which for me can be less engaging; but there's still much to appreciate.

Coil - Snow (demonic apollo b version) [Wax Trax! etc/Infinite Fog Production/Bandcamp]
Coil - Things Happen (feat. Annie Anxiety Bandez) [Wax Trax! etc/Infinite Fog Production/Bandcamp]
Over 10 years after Peter "Sleazy" Christophersen passed, another six years after his partner Jhonn Balance, the Coil re-release machine is very much in full swing, with myriad "unearthed" alternate takes and out-takes from collaborators like Danny Hyde continuing to make money for various people. But there's no doubt that Hyde himself was deeply important to the sound Coil built, as were people like Thighpaulsandra, Drew McDowall and others. No doubt also the recent remaster of Musick to Play in the Dark is exquisite-sounding and well deserving to be available again (I hope they follow up with part 2 soon!) And so, unlike certain cash-ins of late, it's also hard to complain about Love's Secret Domain being celebrated 30 years after its release - a pivotal album for Coil, with ambient techno and folky melodicism along with their queer industrial pop. Whether the bonus tracks with this new edition are all that necessary is questionable, what with so much Coil detritus around, but it's nice enough stuff like the shorter, gentler version of "The Snow" I played tonight. The album itself is as important as ever, seemingly untouched by time. Even Little Annie Anxiety Bandez sounds hardly different compared to her recent outings.

Robert Vincs & Adam Nash - E.K.O. [Echogene]
Melbourne label Echogene brings another collaborative effort here from Australian avant-sax player Robert Vincs, who's worked in the experimental world for some decades now. Here he teams up with electronic artist Adam Nash, whose generative sound programs interact with the sax in strange ways, with snippets of vocals and noise lending this work a quite industrial feel.

Makeda - Fable [Butter Sessions/Bandcamp]
It's probably not fair for Sydney, Brisbane or Melbourne to lay claim to the excellent DJ & producer Makeda, but Melbourne is where she resides now, and she's one of the aritsts Melbourne institution Butter Sessions invited to contribute to a series of 12"s celebrating their 10th birthday. Among the techno, dub & electro outings (and Butter Sessions are nothing if not eclectic), Makeda's work stands out as particularly experimental, with unconventional mixing and structure, juggling and chopping breakbeats, vocal snippets and other detritus of club music with flair & originality.

AURA - Count On Mi [Early Reflex]
Sydney's Daniel Curtis released an EP as AURA on Turin-based electronic label Early Reflex last year. The label, run by Alec Pace, is releasing it second compilation flex002 next week, with AURA contributing something a little poppier than his previous work.

High Tides - Lines On The Horizon (Tim Koch Remix) [i, absentee]
Los Angeles label i, absentee released their Birth Certificate in 2008, and now it seems it's time for the Death Certificate, a final compilation coming out as double CD and digital with artists across the ambient & experimental electronic spectrum. It's released mid-May and tonight we have a little preview, a remix by Adelaide's Tim Koch of LA's High Tides, with Koch's more recent stylings in effect - granular textures and crunchy beats ahoy!

James Welburn - Fast Moon (feat. Juliana Venter) [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
James Welburn - Duration (feat. Tony Buck) [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
James Welburn - In And Out Of Blue (feat. Tomas Järmyr and Juliana Venter) [Miasmah/Bandcamp]
UK multi-instrumentalist James Welburn has been based in Berlin for a while. It's there that he met Sydney's Tony Buck (of The Necks), who worked with Welburn on his first album, Hold, for Erik Skodvin's great doomy label Miasmah. Six years later for his follow-up Sleeper in the Void, Welburn has a new set of collaborators. Swedish drummer Tomas Järmyr (of Motorpsycho and many others) appears on many tracks, and Welburn's previous collaborator Juliana Venter contributes textural vocals on a couple of tracks. It was great to be reminded of the doomy riffs, drones and rhythms of Welburn's excellent debut, and this delayed follow-up doesn't stray too far, but extends into programmed, almost dancefloor beats on "Fast Moon", while Järmyr's drumming is a little more expansive and rocky than the muscular, propulsive work of Buck on the debut, splashing cymbals where Buck pounds the toms. Grab both at Bandcamp.

Listen again — ~209MB


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Sunday, 18th of April, 2021

Playlist 18.04.21 (6:46 pm)

A range of electronic music from piano-led post-classical/kraut, IDM/techno hybrids, and delicate field recording constructs.

LISTEN AGAIN to the forces of nature... stream on demand from FBi, or podcast here.

Malcolm Pardon - Beneath The Surface [The New Black/Bandcamp]
Roll The Dice - Axel [Digitalis Recordings/Bandcamp]
Malcolm Pardon - The Blindspot [The New Black/Bandcamp]
Stockholm duo Roll The Dice released a steady stream of electronic music since their debut self-titled album came out through experimental label Digitalis Recordings in 2010. Peder Mannerfelt is well-known for his gregarious club music under his own name, his involvement with Fever Ray, and for releasing fellow Swiss electronic artists on his Peder Mannerfelt Produktion. But the other half, Malcolm Pardon, has stayed more in the background, making music for film & TV, so his debut solo album is a very welcome occurrence. Hello Death doesn't take its title too seriously - it's more about the acceptance of the inevitability of death than anything more maudlin, with peaceful, enveloping piano and analogue synths echoing his work with Roll The Dice. A rather jaunty number from their debut album reminds us that this combo of very acoustic, organic piano next to synths and electronics has always been a core part of the duo's sound too.

Cale Sexton - The Smell Of Dirt [Heavy Machinery Records/Bandcamp]
Last year, Melbourne cellist & beatmaker Bridget Chappell released her album Undertow on Heavy Machinery Records, composed around the sound of the Federation Bells, an installation in the parklands next to the Yarra, just south-east of Melbourne's CBD called Birrarung Marr. The bells play compositions via MIDI that ring through the park, and as well as inviting the public to submit MIDI files to play on the bells, the City of Melbourne has commissioned a series of works based around their sound and location. After Chappell's work, next up is Melbourne electronic musician Cale Sexton, whose new album Sustain embeds the ringing bells in warm, melodic synths. It's quite nostalgic music, utterly likeable, and I thought the longest track, just over 9 minutes, was the best way to enjoy the sound.

Vladislav Delay - Ranno [Cosmo Rhythmatic/Bandcamp]
Vladislav Delay - Rakkine [Cosmo Rhythmatic/Bandcamp]
Vladislav Delay - Raaha [Cosmo Rhythmatic/Bandcamp]
From analogue to very digital, we join Finland's Sassu Ripatti with his second album in as many years under his prolific alias Vladislav Delay. His earliest releases saw him grouped with the Basic Channel/Chain Reaction minimal techno artists, and a stripped-down ambient dub aesthetic is found throughout his over 2 decades of work - but shimmering, shuddering digital cut-ups and granular processing have been central to what he's done for most of that time too. Later this year there'll be an album as Ripatti for Planet µ, a continuation of a vinyl & digital project from 2013-14 with frenetic dancefloor beats and pop references; the two albums released last year & now on Cosmo Rhythmatic, while referencing dance music, are monolithic forces of nature. For Rakka, Ripatti drew from the raw power of the Finnish wilderness, and on Rakka II he draws again from this power but channels it into something a little more structured towards dance music. Phenomenal, intense stuff.

Microcorps - JFET [ALTER/Bandcamp]
Microcorps - XEM w/ Gazelle Twin [ALTER/Bandcamp]
Frenetic, glitchy dance music also makes up the sounds on the latest album from English musician Alexander Tucker, who we first encountered making yearning psychedelic folk and rock under his own name, and psych-rock-noise with Daniel O'Sullivan as Grumbling Fur. That duo, and other projects including more recent solo Tucker have become increasingly electronic, but it makes sense that this new album, released by Luke Younger's ALTER label this week, receives a new name - Microcorps - as it is quite a left turn all the same. At times Tucker's voice appears, thoroughly splintered, and his processed cello (once you know it's there) scythes through many of the tracks, but by and large it's the jackhammering beats and electronic treatments that define this music. There are some high-profile collaborators here, including the great Simon Fisher Turner on one track, and the distorted voice of Gazelle Twin joins Tucker on one highlight. If you didn't know Tucker's previous work with guitars, strings, and songforms, you'd never know he wasn't a "digital native".

Eomac - Falling Through The Cracks [Planet µ/Bandcamp]
Eomac - Resist All Dogma [Eotrax]
Eomac - Prophetess [Planet µ/Bandcamp]
After living in Berlin for some years, Dublin's Eomac, aka Ian McDonnell of club deconstructionist duo Lakker, repaired to rural Ireland to make his new album Cracks for Planet µ. In these lockdown times, he was freed from the need to consider the dancefloor - although a lot of this is thoroughly danceable all the same. And the rural setting hasn't quite removed the angst and darkness - the cathartic screaming found on tracks from his 2018 album Reconnect appear here too, but so do beautiful choral vocals. The title "Cracks" is a reference to Leonard Cohen's "Anthem", where he suggests that "There is a crack in everything - that's how the light gets in". So this is an album of hope, and a very enjoyable one too.

Andy Stott - Answers [Modern Love]
Andy Stott - Dont know how [Modern Love]
Also released this week is another of Andy Stott's occasional albums, but this one sees him reuiniting with singer Alison Skidmore, who appeared on his great Luxury Problems album and the EPs that preceded it 10 years ago. For what it's worth, Stott is continuing with his 2019 album's very lo-fi aesthetic, so the beats on these tracks have that hissing, moist sound of low-bitrate mp3s. It's odd, but there's certainly some moving music on here which I'll be giving some more listens in the next few weeks.

Kentaro Hayashi - Peculiar [Opal Tapes]
Kentaro Hayashi - Arrowhead [Opal Tapes]
Osaka-based mastering engineer and electronic musician Kentaro Hayashi released his debut album Peculiar initially on CD last year through the Japanese label Remodel. It's now been given an expanded release and vinyl edition through UK label Opal Tapes - we heard one of the new tracks tonight. His work with Merzbow is evident across many of these tracks, but the noise element is more in service of beats and other more familiar structures. Hayashi covers a lot of ground, from minimal techno to various UK bass & club styles, including some hints and drum'n'bass on new track "Arrowhead". Any lover of experimental electronic music, IDM or the far end of the dancefloor should get a lot out of this album.

Armed With Bow - Heavy Handed [MFZ Records]
Armed With Bow - I-WILL-NOT-GIV [MFZ Records]
London cellist Will Langstone did not expect the debut album from his Armed With Bow to sound quite like this. As many of us found, the weight of extended lockdown made him emotionally alienated from his usual art, and it was only through eventually getting deep into his electronic music interests that he found his way back to music-making. There's a bit of processed cello in here, but mostly it's cheeky and clattering experimental beats, and very well done.

Alexandra Spence - Bell, Fern [Room40/Bandcamp]
The second album from Sydney sound-artist Alexandra Spence on Room40 is as captivating as her last. She deals with very personal sound recordings, including field recordings and also everyday objects brought to sonic life through attention to detail and a deep understand of musical communication. The way these sounds blend with electronic tones and singing over its 15 minutes is like a magical spell. A Necessary Softness is not to be missed.

Listen again — ~206MB


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Sunday, 11th of April, 2021

Playlist 11.04.21 (10:44 pm)

Electric folk in a regional French language, mysterious microtonal contemporary classical, covers of 4AD classics, electronic post-grindcore and more - that's Utility Fog tonight!

LISTEN AGAIN to a world of sound... Stream on demand from FBi, podcast here!

Sourdure - La Rupture [Les Disques du Festival Permanent/Pagans/Murailles Music]
Sourdure - L'Escribòta [Les Disques du Festival Permanent/Pagans]
Sourdure - Na Festa [Les Disques du Festival Permanent/Pagans/Murailles Music]
Ernest Bergez, of experimental electronic duo Kaumwald and various bands in various genres, continues his Sourdure project with his new album De Mòrt Viva, which modernises arcane pagan themes through the Auvergnat dialect of the regional French language Occitan - which is closer to Catalan than French, and was the traditional language of many troubadors in ages past. The music features weird & wonderful instruments like the hurdy gurdy, various ancient trumpets, and the daf, a Persian frame drum. As much as it draws on the folk music of central France, there are Arabic melodies flowing through these songs, and electronic pulses and tones. We can see Bergez was already on this path with his 2018 album L'Espròva (and indeed earlier). A singular music, worthy of your time.

anrimeal - I Am Not [anrimeal Bandcamp]
anrimeal - Vertical [anrimeal Bandcamp]
Last week we heard a lovely new song from Ana Rita de Melo Alves's anrimeal - captivating freak-folk on the Object 10 compilation from Objects Forever. So I sought out more music from Alves, and her album Could Divine is equally great - as you can hear on these samplings, there's acoustic folk, with guiar, violin, vocals and piano wrapped up in field recordings and electronic cut-ups, unimpressed and unimpeded by genre constraints. I'm so glad to have discovered her.

Leider - Human Error [Beacon Sound]
Leider - Human Error (Tegh Version) [Beacon Sound]
Broadly describable as "songs" project of Berlin-based Malaysian composer Rishin Singh, Leider features Singh himself on trombone alongside viola, cello and flute, with the other musicians doubling on voice or sparse percussion. The songs thus far revealed from their debut album A Fog Like Liars Loving are haunting works with close harmonies and at times piercing microtonal tuning. If that wasn't enough (and it is - they're stunning songs), the pre-order from Portland's Beacon Sound comes with a set of remixes, including one from Persian sound-artist Tegh.

Sasha Scott - Shapeshifer [Nonclassical/Bandcamp]
From the latest Outside the Lines compilation from UK label/org Nonclassical, violinist/composer Sasha Scott brings us a work of splintered piano, distorted drones and frenetic beats. A perfect example of how classical/non-classical hardly means anything anymore, particularly to those of us trained in the classical tradition...

Sweeney - Kid [sound in silence]
Sweeney - Skin [sound in silence]
Adelaide's Jason Sweeney's career has encompassed many musical genres - from various indie bands to the IDM duo Pretty Boy Crossover and the ambient piano styles of Panoptique Electrical. His emotive voice has appeared as often as it's stood aside, and for the latest surname-only work from Sweeney, Misery Peaks, doom-laden piano and vocals echo in at times heavy electronics and beats - a surprising choice for the Greek label sound in silence, but I'm grateful they've brought these songs to our ears. It's often beautiful and challenging work, recalling at times the late Scott Walker, and is my favourite recent work from Sweeney.

Balmorhea - Night Falls In Your Left [Deutsche Grammophon]
Balmorhea - Vent Pontian [Deutsche Grammophon]
Balmorhea - The Myth [Deutsche Grammophon]
Rob Lowe and Michael A. Muller's Balmorhea have made the kind of postrock-meets-folk-meets-classical that sits perfectly with this show for well over a decade. It's a rather nice surprise to find them on Deutsche Grammophon for their latest album, The Wind - the label is finding its own way to stretch into that "neo-/post-classical" world that seems strangely lucrative now, especially in Europe. It's also nice to see that Balmorhea's sound is not particularly changed for appearing on this label, albeit having already arrived at a quieter approach than their earliest releases. There are electronic distortions at times, some field recordings, and also soft piano along with acoustic guitar textures.

Efterklang - Postal [4AD]
Bradford Cox - Mountain Battles [4AD]
Although it's not out on CD & LP until July, 4AD's 40th birthday compilation Bills & Aches & Blues has now appeared digitally via a set of EPs. It includes myriad contemporary 4AD artists covering music from the legendary label's 4 decades, with The Breeders strangely featuring quite heavily (they're awesome of course!) including tonight's extraordinary avant-garde cover by Deerhunter's Bradford Cox. There are many, many highlights - don't be cynical about this, just check it all out, honest! But I was so, so delighted and surprised to hear the glorious "Postal" by the beloved Piano Magic, reworked in style by Efterklang.

Genghis Tron - Great Mother [Relapse/Bandcamp]
Genghis Tron - Warm Woods [Crucial Blast/Bandcamp]
Genghis Tron - I Won't Come Back Alive (Ulver Remix) [Relapse]
Genghis Tron - Colony Collapse (Justin K Broadrick Remix) [Temporary Residence]
Genghis Tron - Single Black Point [Relapse/Bandcamp]
It was quite a surprise to hear late last year that electronic/grindcore/post-metal band Genghis Tron were releasing a new album after over a decade's silence. Singer Mookie Singerman is no longer with them, and that's not the only big difference - their earlier incarnation shunned live drums for glitched-up IDM-style drum programming, but for this album they're joined by powerhouse drummer Nick Yacyshyn of SUMAC (among others). Tony Wolski's singing is clean in comparison to the various guises of Singerman, and original members Michael Sochynsky and Hamilton Jordan have created sweeping synth & guitar songs which are equal parts postrock, post-metal and kosmische. It's epic and great - but I wanted to remind us of the crunchy IDM-meets-metal of their earlier days, and of the phenomenal five remix 12"s on five different labels released after their Board Up The House album in 2008, featuring IDM, indietronic and metal artists from the likes of Anticon, Temporary Residence and more - here represented by the orchestral & electronic sounds of shapeshifting tricksters Ulver, and the ever-versatile industrial metal pioneer Justin K Broadrick.

Dolphins of Venice - Mars Roaster [DataDoor/Bandcamp]
Here's the second EP from the duo of Adelaide's Tim Koch & US IDM/ambient producer Adrien75. Dolphins of Venice are enamoured of extreme Unicode, and their music is equally outlandish - seemingly blissful strummy rock melted & fried with electronics, garnished with crunchy beats. An album is on its way.

Erik Griswold - Girraween - Spring 3 [Neuma Records/Bandcamp]
We finish with a beautiful piece from the Brisbane-based American composer Erik Griswold, who we often hear performing his own rhythmic and hypnotic works on piano. Here, three of the Four Places in Queensland are performed by other pianists. "Spring" and "Rain" feature in two of the locations; the piano is called upon to evoke natural phenomena in each place, and plays delicately, and occasionally forcefully. At times it sounds like the nimble prepared piano works on Griswold's Room40 albums, but it's natural piano for natural settings. Beautiful stuff.

Listen again — ~208MB


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Sunday, 4th of April, 2021

Playlist 04.04.21 (1:21 am)

Tonight we have some incredible genreless music from around Australia, and around the world, touching on folk, rap, noise, techno, footwork and drum'n'bass. We also have an interview with the brilliant Kcin.

LISTEN AGAIN to the words and music that you need - stream on demand from FBi or podcast right here.

Nika Mo - The Singing Bone [Tone List/Bandcamp]
Nika Mo - Landscape: longing [Nika Mo Bandcamp]
Nika Mo - Dance of the Cloven Hoof [Tone List/Bandcamp]
Annika Moses is a Perth-based composer, sound-artist, radiophonic sound artist and weird-folk singer/songwriter, whose album is one of a number of releases Perth's Tone List are putting out as part of their Audible Edge Festival of Sound. Working here as Nika Mo, Moses composed the songs on Of Cloven Hoof in Honey inspired by the very weird, primal storytelling found in the lesser-known tales from the Grimm's Fairytales (and even the more famous ones have been heavily sanitised in their familiar forms). Often characters undergo radical bodily transformation, or wish to escape their current forms, and the cloven hoof, a motif in many of the stories and traditionally a symbol of deceit or devilishness, comes to signify rather something like changeability or tangled, unknowable complexity. Into this critical framework, Moses has created a collection of beautifully strange, evocative and uncompromising songs, with her own instrumental and vocal performances augmented by a large cast of singers & musicians from Perth's experimental & folk scenes. It's powerful stuff worthy of her remarkable range of talent. Check out her wondrous piece of poetry/composition/sound-art "Amazing blissful moment (fearful receiver)" from last year while you're at it.

anrimeal - Brush My Teeth [Objects Forever]
Pallas Athene - Gimme Gimme [Objects Forever]
Kristen Gallerneaux - Are You An Animal Or Are You A Person? [Objects Forever]
Three tracks from the excellent, wide-ranging new compilation put together by members of The Leaf Library (who I cannot recommend highly enough - check out their last album). Object Ten is a cassette & digital collection of artists from all around the world, ranging from experimental folk & dreampop through skittering electronics and heavy drones. We started with London-based Ana Alves aka anrimeal, whose found sounds, bell-like guitar and violin accompany her voice in a way that echoes Nika Mo above; Toronto's Breanna Johnston aka Pallas Athene brings frenetic beats behind her jaunty dream pop, while US sound-artist Kristen Gallerneaux takes things to an even darker, bass-heavy space.

Taraamoon - Dayjoor (Daygard x Taraamoon) [Low-Zi Records]
Taraamoon - Nebrās (Roody x Taraamoon) [Low-Zi Records]
The debut album Bādbān from Paris-based Persian duo Taraamoon follows two beautiful singles from last year, but it also follows a substantial collection of work under the name 9T Antiope, which has featured frequently on this show, representing their more experimental, freeform challenging work, and featuring words mostly in English from singer Sara Bigdeli Shamloo. Taraamoon is exquisite electronic pop with lyrics entirely in Farsi, with the electronics of Shamloo and partner Nima Aghiani, along with Aghiani's noisemakers and violin, turned to somewhat more directly accessible purposes - shorter songs, beats and basslines etc. The decision to write in Farsi comes from a deep desire to connect with their homeland, as they've been Europe-based for some time, and on Bādbān they take this connection further by collaborating with a selection of Iranian rappers, each of whom weave their raps in amongst the rich vocals of Shamloo, co-creating a narrative about characters spread across the ocean after a shipwreck - metaphorically seeking unity for Iranian communities scattered across the globe over the last few years. Daygard's evocative spoken lyrics merge in the end with Shamloo's melody over loose-limbed beats and Aghiani's floating violin, while Roody, the one female rapper featured, takes a more rhythmic, aggressive approach with her verses.

Armand Hammer & The Alchemist - Aubergine feat. Fielded [Backwoodz Studioz/Bandcamp]
Armand Hammer & The Alchemist - God's Feet [Backwoodz Studioz/Bandcamp]
Armand Hammer & The Alchemist - Peppertree [Backwoodz Studioz/Bandcamp]
The underground rap duo Armand Hammer, made up of billy woods and Elucid, continue to turn out some of the most inspired & inspiring hip-hop of the moment. On new album Haram we find them working with in-demand producer The Alchemist, which has led some to infer that they've sold out, what with Alan Maman's high profile work with Mobb Deep, Anderson .Paak, Freddie Gibbs and other big names in rap - including Eminem. But if he should need to prove himself, The Alchemist does so with uncompromising backings which blend perfectly with woods & Elucid's own style - long, out-of-context spoken samples, bizarre mid-track left turns, chopped & glitched samples etc. The lyrics as as vital as ever, and yes, woods & Elucid are at times coaxed into some oddly catchy tunes that could find purchase outside the underground, but this is exactly the advanced, challenging work we've come to expect from the duo.

Kcin - Salt Ghost [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
...interview with Kcin including...
Kcin - Blood In The Water [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Kcin - Moon (Part 2) (under interview) [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Kcin - Distance From The Sea Of Sorrow feat. Elizabeth Fader (excerpt under interview) [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Kcin - Colonist Reprise [Spirit Level/Bandcamp]
Listeners to UFog over the last few years will have become familiar with Nick Meredith aka Kcin's dark sound, that melds percussion, found sounds and electronics in a way both familiar and unique. It was a pleasure to finally get to interview Nick on the occasion of his extraordinary debut album proper, Decade Zero, seeing release next week via Spirit Level. Listening to this album, it's clear why it's given this special status - it's not just cohesive in sound, but a deeply accomplished work, compulsory listening for anyone with an interest in deconstructed club sounds, industrial techno, Ben Frost's sonic destruction and Utility Fog-style sounds in general. In our conversation, Nick outlines his workflow, in which sounds are sourced and created, built up in the digital world, blasted through vibrating air and re-recorded, further deconstructed and rebuilt. Check it.

Shoeb Ahmad - Double Checks Against The Corner (d) (Peter Knight Version) [New Weird Australia/Bandcamp]
DroomData - Stoeptegels [New Weird Australia/Bandcamp]
Noom - Deep Dark Dance Bubbles [New Weird Australia/Bandcamp]
Infinitely pleasing that Stu Buchanan has turned his attention back to his New Weird Australia project, uncovering strange sounds from around the country for adventurous ears. New compilation Space Between Space sees its contributors expressing the liminal experience of our current situation, and all proceeds will benefit First Nations artists & community affected by the COVID-19 crisis. To start up, we heard Melbourne jazz/electronic musician Peter Knight pushing a forthcoming track from Canberra's Shoeb Ahmad into the red. Then NT-based DroomData dissipates their drones halfway through to give way to touching spoken word in Dutch, and finally the Narrm/Melbourne-based Michelle Nguyen's Noom gives us squelchily warm bouncing rhythms.

The Future Sound Of London - Zen Jenny [FSOL Digital]
Each year for some time now, legendary rave/ambient techno pioneers The Future Sound Of London have released a "calendar" for the year as a progressive album, one new or archival track per month, each exclusive to the album. From FSOL Calendar 2021, tonight I played the March track, melding their organic ambient textures with IDM-ish, almost drum'n'bass rhythms.

Brain Rays & Quiet - Creeps (Coco Bryce Remix) [SEAGRAVE/Bandcamp]
The collaborative work of Brain Rays & Quiet was one of my top discoveries from great UK label SEAGRAVE in recent times - IDM-tinged jungle and footwork of complexity & style. Seagrave now bring us a new EP with a couple of new tracks and a couple of excellent remixes. Notably Dutch producer Yoël Bego aka Coco Bryce, who's on a jungle tip of late, does suitably complex breakbeat juggling on his remix here.

Double O feat. Sheba Q - God Is A Woman (Coco Bryce remix) [Western Lore]
D'tch - Reparation Dub [Western Lore]
Speaking of Coco Bryce, he appeared on Western Lore's Blunted Breaks Vol 2 LP Sampler a few months ago with a lush remix of Double O feat. Sheba Q's track "God Is A Woman". I was under the misapprehension that the 4 tracks on this LP Sampler were excerpted from the Blunted Breaks Vol 2 compilation which was just released a week or so ago - but you'd better take care, because it turns out those are flips & alternates from the tracks featured on the new comp. The original (also lovely) of "God Is A Woman" appears there, among many other great new jungle/hardcore tunes, and I love the half-time head-nodder of "Reparation Dub" from Bristol's D'tch - swapped for "Re-reparation" on the sampler!

Listen again — ~193MB


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