Experimental pop, industrial noise, power ambient, sound art, almost-inhuman percussion and more tonight.
Neneh Cherry - Deep Vein Thrombosis [Smalltown Supersound]Neneh Cherry - Kong [Smalltown Supersound]Neneh Cherry - Slow Release [Smalltown Supersound]
After her stunning comeback in 2012 with Scandinavian power jazz trio The Thing, Neneh Cherry dropped a solo album in 2014 with minimalist music from Rocketnumbernine and production from Four Tet. Four years on, her new album Broken Politics is again produced by Four Tet, and this time his signature sounds - particularly that folktronic hip-hop-influenced vibe of a decade and a half ago - are very much to the fore. It's typically tasteful work though, highlighting the mature, incisive songwriting of Cherry and her longtime partner Cameron "Booga Bear" McVey. I was worried that it couldn't top the fantastic lead single "Kong", with the distinctive co-writing/production of Massive Attack's 3D aka Robert Del Naja, but there are plenty of equals to that song on here - it's that strong an album.
Reuben Ingall - Another Space Song [Feral Media]
Sydney label Feral Media recently released the first of their covers EPs - only on streaming services at the moment - and here we have Canberra's Reuben Ingall doing one of his distinctive and touching covers, this time of '90s alt-rockers Failure.
Borja Flames - Quién es Quién w/ Marion Cousin [Les Disques du Festival Permanent]Borja Flames - Aventuras [Les Disques du Festival Permanent]
Spanish musician Borja Flames has been based in France for over a decade now. In Spain he played in an experimental group called Belmonde, and in France he formed the duo June et Jimwith Marion Cousin, who we've heard on this show with Gaspar Claus, on whose label Les Disques du Festival Permanent this very quirky album is released. Experimental and strange electronic arrangements, yet with catchy songs that draw from the Spanish songwriting tradition. Very cool.
Puce Mary - The Size Of Our Desires [PAN]Puce Mary - Slouching Uphill [PAN]
Danish industrial noise artist Puce Mary has a bunch of releases by now on her native Copenhagen's Posh Isolation, but this is her first to appear on the influential PAN. It's a masterwork of dynamics, of tortured howls and sinister spoken word, low synth drones, sampled orchestras, simple percussion and power electronics. One I think I'll be revisiting a bit in coming months.
Uboa - Thigh High Cat Tights [Art As Catharsis]Uboa - I Can't Love Anymore [Art As Catharsis]Uboa - The Sky May Be (Entropy) [Art As Catharsis]
Melbourne musician Xandra Metcalfe has released a remarkable album as Uboa on Sydney label Art As Catharsis this month. Drawing from Metcalfe's experiences as a trans person in a cisnormative society, and dealing with issues around mental illness, it teeters and sways between harsh, glitched noise and dreamy layered ambience. It's all the more powerful for this dual nature. The first two tracks represent the two sides: "Thigh High Cat Tights" is power electronics and extreme metal glitched in a way that recalls Jim Plotkin's early 2000s Atomsmasher/Phantomsmasher releases, while "I Can't Love Anymore" has fragile, layered vocal drones and spoken word. Meanwhile the second half is a suite bearing the album's title, and "Entropy" takes us down the spiral into a very dark place.
Attilio Novellino - Neurofeedback Radiations [Midira Records]Attilio Novellino - Satan Is Always Happy [Midira Records]Attilio Novellino - Perceptual Experience Of The Body [Midira Records]Attilio Novellino - You Falling [Midira Records]Attilio Novellino - Amygdala Poetry [Midira Records]
Italian avant-garde producer Attilio Novellino creates dense soundscapes and sound-art, with on this album a slew of collaborators. In a continuous set of tracks we move from glitchy, sparse sound-art to various forms of drone and power ambient, heavy drone-rock passages, and later some ambient glitchy piano. If you loved early Tim Hecker you need to hear this (and if you didn't, shame on you).
Giulio Aldinucci - Aphasic Semiotics [Karlrecords]Giulio Aldinucci - Mute Serenade [Karlrecords]Giulio Aldinucci - The Burning Alphabet [Karlrecords]
For a few albums' worth now, Italian experimental musician Giulio Aldinucci has been exploring full-spectrum drone works built from looped choral phrases. Last year's Borders And Ruinswas a revelation, and somehow his new album Disappearing In A Mirror transcends even those heights. Aldinucci's control over the small loops he samples, and the variation and urgency he pulls from the layering & processing of those source sounds is incredible. He knows what he's doing, that's for sure!
Eli Keszler - Measurement Doesn't Change The System At All [Shelter Press]Eli Keszler - Simple Act Of Inverting The Episode [Shelter Press]Eli Keszler - Fifty Four To Madrid [Shelter Press]
New York percussionist Eli Keszler has made a name across the avant-garde world for his ear-bending, mutating percussion work. On Stadium, his new album for Shelter Press, his kit blurs into a nearly non-stop cloud of motion, like a live version of the technology-aided drill'n'bass of Animals on Wheels, but all performed live. Across this album there are little electronic melodies, slow-moving tuned percussion basslines, and astonishing filigree drum work, which mostly stays at a middling level of controlled energy rather than bursting into showy riffs and breaks.
Penelope Trappes - Kismet [Houndstooth, preview courtesy of The Wire]
Originally from the Northern Rivers of NSW (so a little bit too far to be within FBi's local zone), Penelope Trappes moved to New York a while ago, and is now based in London. Her first solo album Penelope One came out through Optimo Music last year, and Penelope Two drops on Houndstooth at the end of the month. Her work is a curious amalgam of field recordings, surging ambient work and vocals. This preview track comes from the latest cover CD The Wire Tapper 48 out with legendary experimental music magazine The Wire (now apparently Adventures In Underground Music).
This is an Australian track.
This is a local artist.