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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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Monday, 15th of November, 2021

Playlist 14.11.21 (12:34 am)

Tonight, a mix of Utility Fog's obsessions, from mutant electronic songs and folktronica to cello & strings mixed with electronics, to bass, techno, hip-hop & jungle alloys.
It's Supporter Drive time @ FBi - an important time for any community radio station, and these last two years have been difficult to negotiate for all sections of the music industry.
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Myxomy - A little opaque [Subtext Recordings/Bandcamp]
Myxomy - Toxin out [Subtext Recordings/Bandcamp]
Ziúr & James Ginzburg are both important musicians in the ex-pat Berlin scene. Ginzburg's work with Emptyset was influential minimal techno and then influential bass-oriented sound-art; his Subtext Recordings is home to adventurous music of all shapes, including various artists from the bass scene exploring outside of standard categories. Myxomy, just released on that label, finds him working with Ziúr, who also mutates bass & techno genres to her own ends. Ziúr incorporates autotuned, distorted pop vocals into some of her music, while Ginzburg has released gorgeous atmospheric folk among other things, and both artists' voices appear in some form or other on this very interesting work. There's also lots of messed-up beats and bass drops and granular textures of all sorts.

A Country Practice - Sometimes I Feel Like a Conduit Between Two Worlds (Channeled by Reuben Ingall) [A Country Practice Bandcamp]
A Country Practice - Words and Lines (Shoeb Ahmad dub) [A Country Practice Bandcamp]
Out this week is a phenomenal collection of remixes from the recent album by Brisbane trio A Country Practice, who make country-influenced songs with circuit-bent keyboards and other electronics along with guitar and vocals. There's a raft of great electronic artists from round the country contributing here, but tonight we heard from two Canberrans - something epic and dramatic from Reuben Ingall, and something distorted and bass-heavy from Shoeb Ahmad. Don't miss this!

Marissa Paternoster - White Dove [Don Giovanni Records/Bandcamp]
This stunning single from Marissa Paternoster of Screaming Females is taken from her forthcoming album Peace Meter, much of which I believe was co-created with Andy Gibbs from the phenomenal adventurous metal band THOU, with contributions also from cellist Kate Wakefield from the Cincinnati-based band Lung - notable because there's so much cello & strings in tonight's playlist. I've had this song on repeat for some time, and can't wait for the whole album to drop.

mira calix - an infinite thrum (archipelago) [Warp/Bandcamp]
mira calix - fundamental things [Warp/Bandcamp]
You never know what you're going to get from a Mira Calix release, which is part of the joy. Chantal Passamonte was the first female artist signed to the Warp label, at a time when the electronic music scene was not exactly a comfortable place for women, and she has forged a path from electronic productions through to luminous contemporary classical works (including an exquisite cover of Boards of Canada featuring Oliver Coates on cello). Her new album absent origin is a collection based around the idea of collage (extending to the artwork). The tracks derive inspiration from collage artists throughout history - many of whom are or were women - and Passamonte engages in various collage techniques on different tracks. As well as field recordings, ramshackle beats and vocal samples, there is an abundance of strings, which in the spirit of collage may well be sourced from existing Mira Calix works. In any case, it's intriguing and often beautiful stuff.

Au Revoir Hands - Spindrift [Au Revoir Hands]
The debut album from Melbourne electronic musician Anthony Lyons and now-Blue Mountains-based cellist Emily Williams, working together as Au Revoir Hands, is now released. I've played a couple of singles from Hemispheres, and it's great to hear the full work now, with sinuous modular synth lines and beats weaved through with layers of cello. Now that lockdowns are lifted and borders opened, there's a chance that we'll get to see them do this live soon - fingers crossed!

Resina - Manic [130701/Bandcamp]
Resina - Horse Tail [130701/Bandcamp]
Speaking of cello, Polish cellist Karolina Rec aka Resina releases her third album proper on Fat Cat's contemporary classical label 130701 next week, and it's her best work yet. Among others, it features a full choir, some excellent production & mixing collaboration from Daniel Rejmer, and drumming from Mateusz Rychlicki. Rec's cello is still there, looped and multi-tracked as rhythmic beds and melodies, but augmented by the choral arrangements (often rhythmical as well), percussion and sound design, all of which combine in symbiotic ways - as I've suggested, the instruments, choir and production all play intermixed roles, and it adds up to a pretty thrilling whole.

Mabe Fratti + Concepción Huerta - Mar de Voces [SA Recordings/Unheard of Hope]
Meanwhile, over in Mexico Guatemalan cellist Mabe Fratti has swiftly become an exciting voice in contemporary experimental music - and yes, voice is also an important part of her music. As well as her effected, processed cello and her soaring vocals, Fratti loves mixing in electronics, and on her new EP Estática we find her working (not for the first time) with Mexican experimental musician Concepción Huerta, both of whom work with customized pedal boards full of all sorts of effects for live sound processing. The two artists have also created a sample library to go with the EP.

Laura Cannell, Kate Ellis & Chris Watson - Cloaked By Ravens Wings [Brawl Records]
As the year nears its end, there are only two more EPs left in Laura Cannell & Kate Ellis' year-long project These Feral Lands - A Year Documented in Sound and Art. For their October Sounds, like the last couple of months, the British violinist & cellist invited a number of collaborators to join them. Tonight we hear their instruments in eerie conversation with ravens recorded by field recording master (and ex-Cabaret Voltaire member) Chris Watson.

Gideon Wolf - Objects & Apparitions [Fluid Audio/Facture/Gideon Wolf Bandcamp]
London composer and musician Tristan Shorr records as Gideon Wolf - a varied mix from noisier strains of electronic & drone through to plangent post-classical as heard on his new album Objects & Apparitions, his fifth now released through Fluid Audio. The album is a full-length soundtrack to a film released last year, and features variations on a simple, but affecting, series of phrases for strings, which phase and pulse like electronic drones, quite beautiful to get lost in.

From the Mouth of the Sun - I Draw You Close [Lost Tribe Sound/Bandcamp]
Aaron Martin & Dag Rosenqvist have worked together as From the Mouth of the Sun since 2012. Martin's talents at minimalist Americana, on cello and other mostly acoustic instruments, mesh with Rosenqvist's experience with captivating drone works, which have often incorporated acoustic instrumentation as well as distortions and throbs from his love of postrock. While there's always a fair share of darkness in their work, there are some quite hopeful pieces among the latest works. It's as beautiful and patient as ever.

Atrice - Intensified [Ilian Tape/Bandcamp]
Atrice - Corcovado [Atrice Bandcamp]
Atrice - Hatara [Ilian Tape/Bandcamp]
Via the ever-great Ilian Tape, it's great to discover the beat-juggling bass science of Atrice, the Zurich-based duo of Lino Schilling & Pablo Chacon-Pino. They've had a series of releases in the last couple of years, as well as collecting some equally great tunes from 2018 & 2019 on their own Bandcamp. IDM and UK bass genres are a big influence, including some fully-fledged drum'n'bass/jungle tracks, but generally they do that Ilian Tape thing (also found in tunes from Andrea, Skee Mask et al) of drum'n'bass-influenced beat science slipped into bass techno. However we label them, the technique is superb.

They Hate Change - 1000 Horses (feat. SARGE) [Jagjaguwar/Bandcamp]
They Hate Change - Screwface [godmode/Bandcamp]
The Tampa-based duo of Dre (27, he/him) and Vonne (27, they/them), as They Hate Change, make what's undeniably US-style underground rap, but it's heavily influenced by UK styles - grime MCs, and heaps of drum'n'bass/jungle beats. It's just one example of how much jungle has found its way into the US underground - not just the club scene with artists like MoMA Ready but also hip-hop. Their 666 Central Ave. EP from last year on godmode is an instant classic, and they've now signed to Jagjaguwar, with a couple of singles slipped out so far...

Dom & Roland - Whispers (1996) [Dom & Roland Bandcamp]
Speaking of full on jungle, Dom & Roland is known for his intelligent, emotive, and very dark drum'n'bass, but a new EP of unreleased tunes through the ages brings us this 1996 track, circa his classic The Storm, with full-on amen choppage and warm sub bass action.

DJ FLP - moonlight [DJ FLP Bandcamp]
Speaking of jungle's influence on US sounds, from Michigan, DJ FLP melds jungle and IDM influences with the footwork & juke of neighbouring Michigan. This tune is all blissful synth pads and manic beats somewhere in between jungle & juke, a tendency found throughout his Bandcamp catalogue.

ilex - Levitate [ilex Bandcamp]
Calming things down to finish tonight with the drawn-out sounds of Sydney percussionist Holly Conner, also found in jazz crossover ensemble Microfiche. As ilex, her percussion takes the form of bells, gongs and other instruments attenuated through effects and blended with synths to produce a shimmery kind of ambient not unlike the vapourwave, dreamwave and whatever other waves cutting edge artists are doing these days. It's the perfect chill-out/comedown after the rave tracks we've just been treated to.

Listen again — ~205MB

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