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Utility Fog


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Sunday nights from 9 to 11pm on FBi Radio, 94.5 FM in Sydney, Australia.

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Monday, 7th of March, 2022

Playlist 06.03.22 (10:05 pm)

Quite a trip tonight from shining songwriting to avant-garde experimental and sound-art.

LISTEN AGAIN because what did I tell you about "not to be missed"? Stream on demand from FBi Radio, podcast here.

Lack The Low - Satum [Art As Catharsis/Bandcamp]
Lack The Low - Brigid [Art As Catharsis/Bandcamp]
I wrote a few weeks ago about the last single from this brilliant album by Melbourne's Kat Hunter aka Lack The Low. God-Carrier finds Hunter playing violin, cello, guitar, keyboards, producing and of course singing these very cathartic songs (released again by Sydney label Art As Catharsis). Augmented by drummers, and on a few tracks a clarinettist, Hunter forms songs as full of heart as they are of complex arrangements, driven by her emotive voice. Not to be missed.

romæo - no music comes from me [Provenance/Bandcamp]
Aphir - Pearl of Destruction [Provenance/Bandcamp]
Last week I played Lack The Low's contribution to Provenance Collective's latest compilation, Marks of Provenance V. The second such collection since Prov re-formed as a collective, it sees musicians from around the country supporting each other in all sorts of ways - indeed Becki Whitton, aka Aphir, who is a major force behind the label's revival, also mastered Lack The Low's new album. Whitton contributes a sampling of her recent vocal layer & processing ouevre (see last year's Plastichoir), while Sydney's romæo feeds her voice through harsh autotune over her beats.

Tanya Tagaq - Tongues [Six Shooter Records/Bandcamp]
Tanya Tagaq - Colonizer (Tundra Mix) [Six Shooter Records/Bandcamp]
Over the last 2 decades, Indigenous Canadian singer Tanya Tagaq has lost none of her fervour. She's famous for the Inuit throat-singing of her culture, but also for embracing experimentalism in her music (having collaborated with Björk in the Medúlla era) - and on Tongues she's aided by production collaborator Saul Williams and Gonjasufi in the mix. Her theme of decolonisation and Indigenous survival is well served by her powerful voice - whether speaking or singing - as well as the electronics and percussion of her accompaniment.

The Pond - Pane Caldo [Syrphe/Bandcamp]
The Pond - Linger [Syrphe/Bandcamp]
Jetzmann - Lingeringering [Syrphe/Bandcamp]
ЯE89 - Salomean Acid Funk [Syrphe/Bandcamp]
Berlin-based singer Elisabetta Lanfredini and sound-artist/composer Nicolas Wiese form The Pond, a project which on last year's Turchesi Miracolosi fractures classical vocals among soundscapes and glitches (all made from Lanfredini's voice). I missed Syrphe's release of the original album last year, but I'm glad to discover it now alongside the just-released RE-Works, which further abstracts these sounds, some adding (abstract) beats, some stretching or up-ending the vocals into unrecognizability. As with his massive compilations of experimental & electronic music from Asia and Africa, Cedrik Fermont here mixes little-known European artists with some better-known ones. All do justice to the source material.

Gantz - gone long before left [Gantz Bandcamp]
Gantz - silence [Gantz Bandcamp]
Turkish producer Gantz continues to drop enigmatic releases on his Bandcamp with regularity. true love mixes underwater hi-hats and monophonic synths with occasional nods to his dubstep origins. Never less than intriguing.

Machinefabriek - Prisma (Thigh Slapping Without Tears Mix by Matt Wand) [Machinefabriek Bandcamp]
Last year Rutger Machinefabriek Zuydervelt released a 17-minute experiment in programmed MIDI synths and beats as a free download, as it was quite a departure from his usual sound-art. The track now makes it on to CD accompanied by a suite of remixes in Prisma+, including mechanical assemblages triggered by the original track from Canadian cellist & creator Nick Storring, ambient beauty of equal length to the original from Scottish sound-artist Phil Maguire, and two different remixes from UK experimental maestro Matt Wand (known for the cut&paste madness of Stock, Hausen & Walkman). In fact, Wand created so many off-shoots from Zuydervelt's track that he's uploaded an entire album of further remixes at his Small Rocks Bandcamp.

Lakker - Ghost Ship [Lakker Bandcamp]
Berlin-based Irish duo Lakker came up from IDM & breakcore roots to break through with incredible bass-oriented techno, with experimentalism never far with their duo productions or solo as Eomac and Arad. This year on Bandcamp they're releasing a series of EPs celebrating everything dance music, from techno to drum'n'bass to grime or trance - whatever takes their fancy. LKRTRX002 came out a couple of weeks ago, with this slab of bass techno featured.

mick harris - Prime[non stop v] [Mick Harris Bandcamp]
mick harris - Shuffler [Mick Harris Bandcamp]
Mick Harris has appeared on this show a lot with his groundbreaking dubstep-predicting Scorn project, and more recently I've been featuring the continuing HedNod sessions he's releasing under his own name on Bandcamp. The dub bass and beats are right out of Scorn, but the beats swing more in a hip-hop fashion, and the heaviness is offset with a lightness of attitude. It's fun and head-nodding.

Harmony - Crazy Eyes [Deep Jungle Bandcamp]
Lee Bogush has been making jungle as (DJ) Harmony since the early days in the '90s, and formed Deep Jungle as an outlet for the archival DAT tapes of mostly-unreleased tunes from many of the greats. It's a central player in the jungle revival, and Harmony's own music is a frequent highlight. So it's appropriate that DAT050 - the label's 50th release - is from Bogush himself, and I particularly love the warm bassline and crisp breaks of "Crazy Eyes".

Eli Keszler - The Vaulting Sky [LuckyMe/Bandcamp]
It's arguable that the complex skittering beats and floating electronics of much of New York drummer Eli Keszler's solo work are influenced by drum'n'bass - among other electronic genres. His album for LuckyMe was a highlight of last year, expanding the jazz-meets-jungle into rain-washing cyberpunk streets, and it's fitting that the album's "Static Doesn't Exist" has now gotten a remix from Hyperdub boss Kode9. It's the B-side of his new single, but love the understated drumkit and electronics of the main track - very much in keeping with Keszler's recent work.

Aidan Baker - Nutripon [Bibliotapes/Aidan Baker Bandcamp]
Aidan Baker - Ergot [Bibliotapes/Aidan Baker Bandcamp]
Just a week or two after a new album from his mighty doomdrone duo Nadja with partner Leah Buckareff (itself accompanied by a solo work by Baker), Aidan Baker has released a soundtrack to a classic sci-fi novel by John Brunner called The Sheep Look Up. Brunner was warning of environmental destruction decades ago (the novel is 50 years old). Baker's music here isn't all doom & gloom, but it's certainly evocative of futures past, as well as Baker's love of Japanese psych-drone and European krautrock.

Sharif Sehnaoui - Relent (radio edit) [Al Maslakh/Bandcamp]
A very different kind of guitar technique is exhibited on the second volume of "unprepared guitar" from Lebanese experimental mainstay Sharif Sehnaoui. Sehnaoui is part of the fabled "A" Trio with trumpeter Mazen Kerbaj, who we heard from last week, and double bassist Raed Yassin. The two tracks on this 12" feature tumbling, scrabbling open-tuned acoustic guitar, with no effects or preparations. It's enjoyably listenable free improv, released on his & Kerbaj's Al Maslakh label.

Minus Pilots with friends - You Engineers, You Architects (with Rothko & Machinefabriek) [PLAYNEUTRAL/Bandcamp]
Last last year London label PLAYNEUTRAL released the first EP All The Changing Hues from London bass/drums/electronic duo Minus Pilots "with friends" - I featured a couple of tracks. The second release, When Lilacs Last, is out now with a similar selection of pals creating unpredictable music from old vinyl, drones, strings, clarinet, drums and who knows what else. On this track they're joined by bass-ambient phenomenon Rothko and UFog regular Machinefabriek.

Lia Kohl - First Picture of the Weather Pattern [Shinkoyo/Bandcamp]
Lia Kohl - Moon Bean [Shinkoyo/Bandcamp]
It's always a pleasure to discover another cellist taking their instrument into uncharted territory, so I'm thankful to Matt Mehlan of Skeletons' label/collective/thing Shinkoyo/Artist Pool for introducing me to Chicago cellist/sound-artist/performer Lia Kohl. Her album Too Small to be a Plain is a stunning concoction of acoustic cello loops, mournful/calm synths, field recordings and voice. I can't recommend it highly enough.

Listen again — ~198MB


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