Fat Planet – Rewind

Fat Planet is coming to the end of its journey (for now…). Here’s the story:

In August 2003, I started broadcasting the Fat Planet show on the (then) newly-birthed FBi Radio in Sydney.  FBi was set up to take a unique view of Australian music, to reposition both the city of Sydney and the country as a place for new, original and innovative sounds – and to tarmac over the notion that we were good for nothing more than Kylie Minogue, INXS and Men At Work.  When I was approached to do a ‘world music show’, I opted to toe the line on exactly the same philosophy – to reposition the notion of ‘world music’, and promote innovation and experimentation from unlikely locations.

Of course, the whole concept of ‘world music’ is in itself a paradox – it is a marketing and sales term, designed for ingestion by Western audiences.  ‘World music’ means nothing to consumers in South America or Africa.  Not only that, but it is quite insulting to apply such a broad and meaningless term to well-developed and flourishing local music industries.  The term also generally implies indigenous and traditional sounds, and as I was quick to discover, most countries falling in the ‘world music’ category consider indigenous music in much the same way that Westerners treat their folk heritage – as something to be acknowledged, but mostly unrepresentative of the current musical climate.

Back in 2003, music was only starting to be distributed online.  Most labels and artists had a general mistrust about duplication and piracy, and had yet to wake up to the web’s full potential. Luckily, there were a few vanguards around the globe taking advantage of the medium – often from the most unlikely of places.  Those vanguards naturally became staples on the Fat Planet radio show – music that was unreleased in Australia, often only released in its country of origin, but nonetheless music that was refreshing, challenging and utterly compelling.

As so much of the show’s pre-planning was spent trawling the web, I inevitably started to post a few links on my personal blog, zero-G.  The first tracks went online in January 2004 (Finland’s LacklustreWang Inc from Italy and South African Portable taking early honours) and, a couple of months later, the content shifted to its own URL at fatplanet.com.au. Although this was something of an organic and common sense process, it was also partly inspired by the early pioneers of the mp3 blog who had started shortly prior – FluxblogSaid The GramaphoneMusic For Robots and, primarily, Swen’s Weblog, a curation of mp3 links from artists that had appeared in The Wire magazine.

Over a five year period, the Fat Planet site went on to feature many hundreds of artists, exposing new sounds and styles often for the first time in an English-speaking environment.  Fat Planet was also one of the first to expose emerging genres and feature tracks from scenes such as baile funkkudurocongotronics, balkan hot step, baltimorecosmic disco and Boston bounce.  Artists who received some of their early blog-love on Fat Planet included M.I.A., Ghislian Poirier, Juana Molina, The Knife, Filastine, Konono No.1, Frikstailers, K’naan, Mutamassilk, Edu-K, Esau Mwamwaya, Para One, Villa Diamante, Jahcoozi, Cardopusher, Sibot, Stacs Of Stamina, Tetine, Bostich, DJ C, Ramallah Underground, Sweat X, Peter Bjorn & John, Mochipet, Datarock, Annie and many more.

In January 2008, the Fat Planet blog was featured in the UK’s ‘Guardian‘ newspaper in Chris Salmon’s column ‘Click To Download’.  In referencing a number of mp3 blogs from all over the world, Fat Planet was dubbed “Best Blog for world music“.  The Guardian called the blog: “a fantastic melting point of cutting-edge international sounds; be it Danish rap-techno, Argentinean cumbia, Israeli dub or Chinese hip-hop. The range and quality of the music Buchanan tracks down is astonishing”. (read the column here).  Time Out also reviewed Fat Planet earlier this year, calling it “a stunningly diverse range of music from all corners of the globe”.

Writing now in mid-2008, Fat Planet is drawing to a close (for now…) as it’s time to map some new terrain. Thanks to everyone who tuned in to the show or the blog, and I look forward to bringing you along on the next part of the ride.

Here’s some of the chunkier content from the radio show, all yours to digest in perpetuity:

INTERVIEW PODCAST ARCHIVE:

Lindstrom (July 2007)
Amon Tobin (February 2007)
Miho Hatori (January 2007)
El Perro Del Mar (January 2007)
Frederic Galliano, Kuduro Sound System (December 2006)
Annie (October 2006)
Filastine (October 2006)
Peter, Bjorn & John (September 2006)
OMFO (August 2006)
CSS / Cansei De Ser Sexy (July 2006)

PLUS:

Fat Planet Arabesque Mixtape (2006)
Fat Planet Year Two Mixtape (2005)
Fat Planet Year One Mixtape (2004)

FAT PLANET BLOG ARCHIVE (All 300 posts, give or take …)

Lykke Li (Sweden) – ‘Little Bit’

lykkeVideo: Lykke Li ‘Little Bit‘ 

I’m certainly not the first to write about Lykke Li and I’m sure I won’t be the last. And while there’s a tendency for blogs to swarm around hyped artists in an effort to stay painfully relevant, I’m jumping on this bandwagon for good reason – the reason being that ‘Youth Novels’ is a remarkable album, worthy of the attention it has already received; an album that has been on repeat rotation in the Fat Planet house since its Swedish release earlier this year.

A swift comparison places 22-Year Old Li Lykke Timotej Zachrisson in a continuum that joins the dark, moody sweep of El Perro Del Mar and the skewed electro pop of Robyn, levitating above ground between both. With production from Bjorn from Peter, Bjorn and John, the album fails to fully adhere to the Swedish indie-pop blueprint and chooses instead to veer into less obvious laneways. Case in point: while ‘Dance Dance Dance’ might be something you could hear falling from the lips of the glorious Victoria Bergsman, ‘Complaint Department’ – with its dirty, looping piano stabs – is in a forest of its own.

Even more remarkable is the seemingly carefree ability for Li to continuously channel that rarest of commodities – the perfect pop song – and do so many times over in one extended collection. Lasse Mårtén worked as engineer on the album and a glimpse at his resume might explain why this brand of alt.pop works so well – he’s chalked up fader duties for Pink, Peter Bjorn and John, Marit Bergman, Shout Out Louds, Kelly Clarkson (for ‘Since U Been Gone) and … (bless ’em) The Veronicas. Put simply, ‘Youth Novels’ is as good as indie-pop gets.

Lykke Li is touring throughout the UK and US this month & next, and the ‘Little Bit’ EP lands in North America on May 6th. Download her SXSW set at lullabye.net.

Tetine (Brazil) – ‘Entertainment N249’

After wearing out the shine on my copy of their ‘Lick My Favela’ CD, it’s good to have Tetine back with a new release. The Brazilian duo are dropping a full length for choice UK label Soul Jazz Records on April 29th, preceded right at this moment by the Deize Tigrona voiced-single ‘I Go To The Doctor’ (featuring a tidy electro remix from local neighbours CSS).

Unless my thick fingers are deceiving me, ‘Let Your Xs Be Ys’ is Tetine’s eighth album, rollercoasting on a journey that began with 1996’s ‘Alexander’s Grave’, a release which drew musical comparisons with Philip Glass and theatrical similarities to Antonin Artaud – quite a combination. Yet this experimental hyrbid of music and performance has come to define Bruno Verner and Eliete Mejorado over the last 12 years – taking them from their Brazilian home to a long-standing residence in the UK and creative partnerships with Robin Rimbaud (Scanner), Sophie Calle and Igloo, and appearances at Sao Paulo’s Sonar, Whitechapel Art Gallery, Barbican Centre, Miami Music Conference and London’s South Bank.

Trying to pin down Tetine’s sound is almost an artform in itself – veering from the Clash’n’Kraftwerk beds that make up their largely funk-focussed aforementioned Favela EP, to the electronic rumble of last year’s single ‘A Historia Da Garca’, to the mix of electro, baile funk, minimal, new wave and sparse post punk on this latest release.

It’s perhaps no surprise that Tetine played curatorial duties on two important Brazilian compilations a few years back – ‘Slam Dunk Presents Funk Carioca’ (the first funk compilation released outside of Brazil) and ‘The Sexual Life Of Savages’ (also on Soul Jazz) – a near-defintive history of early 80s Brazilian post punk.

Ingested with their history in mind, ‘Let Your Xs Be Ys’ feels as playful as it is relaxed – soundtracking an artistic project that wears its authenticity, confidence and continuing need for experimentation proudly on its sleeve. Less ‘we do not give a fuck’, more ‘we do not need to give a fuck’ – a crucial difference in a music market riddled with attitude, desperately seeking substance.

More: tetine.net

Telepathique (Brazil) – ‘Eu Gusto’

Back in 2003, before funk carioca made a large noise outside of Brazil, record store exposure to new brazilian music tended to be limited towards remixes of old school bossa or frenetic drum’n’bass workouts on a DJ Marky tip. One name that sticks out from that period is Sao Paulo’s DJ Periferico, aka Érico Theobaldo – mainly due to his remix of ‘Dadinho’ from the ‘City Of God’ Soundtrack which cropped up repeatedly on Fat Planet playlists (aside from that appearance, Periferico also lent his production skills to Brazilian artists such as Otto and BiD).

Fast forward five years and Theobaldo is entwined with vocalist Mylene Pires for a project titled ‘Telepathique‘ – neither fish nor flesh, neither electro nor rave nor funk nor punk, but a cluster-fuck of all. Their 2006 debut ‘Last Time On Earth’ earned much respect in Portugal and Spain which led to a tour through the region, playing many festival gigs and sharing stages with Diplo, Hot Chip and Massive Attack. The new EP ‘Love & Lust’ (The Control Group) finally allows the rest of the world to play catch up and precedes a reissue of ‘Last Time On Earth’ later this year.

Outside of her work on ‘Telepathique’, Mylene also has a distinguished solo career which delves deep into Brazilian and African music traditions – garnering accolades and awards for her self-titled debut, which she recently followed with ‘Nao Muito Distante’, an album of ‘reinterpretations’ of Portuguese band Madredeus. Info & sounds: myspace.com/mylenepires

The Diaphanoids (Italy) – ‘What The F**k Do You Want With Us, Earthlings?’

The Diaphanoids are Italians Andrea Bellentani and Simon Maccari and their latest EP – ‘Mermaids Of Lunaris’ is released through Bear Entertainment (Lindstrom, Idjut Boys, Chicken Lips). Everything else there is to know about the Diaphanoids is seemingly culled from the pages of a Kurt Vonnegut novel.

“Here on planet diaphanoid time travelling is a fun way to spend the weekend … but these two took it too far! They always wanted more and to see if the grass was greener on other planets! They left us in 5079 and have never been seen since, legend has it they travelled to your earth and visited 1977-1980, Berlin-Munich-London-Paris-New York”.

They have the date and location spot on – the Diaphanoids’ witches brew involves one part 70s disco, another part 00’s Cosmic variety. There’s an eye of a Krautrock newt and a toe of Prog, and probably a nipple or two from John Carpenter. Whilst it might seem like this particular style is being reinvented time and time again, there’s still space for these boys and their infectious, astral-electro. Especially with EP titles such as “What The F**k Do You Want With Us, Earthlings?” and “Escape From Martius 42”.

Turn on, tune in, space out.

Buy at EMusic / Juno.

Bassline: Not Just An England Thing?

The job of the Fat Planet blog is to expose music from outside of the Anglo / American axis, and whilst that’s served us well over the years, it does mean that we intentionally turn a blind eye to sounds, styles and movements that are hyper-localised in those regions. Bassline (or ‘niche‘) is one such genre – like Dubstep before it, Bassline has (until now) essentially been “an England thing”, birthed via an unholy carnal union of 2-step, dubstep, grime, house and speed garage.

And, again, like so many young movements before it, the transition from underground to overground has not been without its share of authoritarian disapproval and police interference – Sheffield’s ‘Niche’ club, seen by many as the spiritual home of Bassline, was shut down in November 2005 following a heavy-handed police raid, and many mainstream journalists have been digging around to further promote alleged ‘dangers of the scene’ (a tactic that will sound tiresome to anyone living through the music revolutions of disco, punk, rave etc etc). Bassline jumped into the global psyche with the release of ‘Heartbroken’ by Leeds’ producer, T2  – hitting #2 on the UK charts and now slowly conquering the rest of the planet, sales chart by sales chart.

And so to the international perspective – we’re having to make do with remixes for the time being, rather than original productions, but nonetheless it offers a glimpse at some possible futures for the globalisation of the sound:

mp3: DJ CHEEKSTA & SIZZLA Baby (T2 Remix) (via The Heatwave)

T2 drops a remix for Leicester’s DJ Cheeksta, with a grab of Jamaica’s Sizzla from his ‘Rise To The Occasion’ album.

mp3: ZULU & T2 Bodybroken (Steak House Mashup) (via Mashit)

Steak House (aka Monekysteak featuring Bristol’s dubstep / grime producer Atki2) blends T2’s anthem with an acapella from Panama’s Zulu. The MC has been a long-time collaborator of U.S. producer DJ C and next month they drop a new mixtape titled ‘Gods & Robots’ which will feature a new production from Atki2, along with contributions from a swathe of global heads from Argentina, Belgium, Canada, England, Israel, Portugal and the U.S.

mp3: FAGGET FAIRIES Sam Ti (A1 Bassline Mix)

Denmark’s Fagget Fairies (pictured), described as a “burka-wearing lesbian ghetto-funk MC/DJ duo”, get a bassline makeover from A1. The Fairies have released an EP via Palms Out Sounds, the results of which have been dropped on the Fat Planet radio show and come highly recommended.

For some top shelf full-length bassline mixes, check the latest instalment of the Mad Decent Worldwide Radio Podcast with a mix from Faggatronix, or this excellent ‘Bassline House Mix‘ from WordTheCat.

God’s Own Country (Nigeria) – Movie Trailer

We’ve read many comments on both Radiohead and Trent Reznor’s attempts to subvert the music industry distribution paradigm , and there’s no doubt that their actions (and those of countless others) have got the major labels scratching their heads in bewilderment. And it’s not just the music industry that’s dancing around a bevvy of possible futures – all media is in a profound state of change.

And if that all seems very grand, check God’s Own Country – a project that rewrites the movie distribution rules with a ‘pay what you can’ download model, attached with a free audio mixtape featuring a genuinely African American playlist: Lil Wayne, Dead Prez, Green Lantern, Akon and Dipset mix it with X-Plastaz (Tanzania), Lopango Ya Banka (Congo), Krukid (Uganda), Amkoullel (Mali), Eldee The Don (Nigeria) and more.

God’s Own Country is the movie debut of Nigerian director Femi Agbayewa and tells the tale of a Nigerian immigrant finding that the bright lights of the U.S. of A. are not what they were cracked up to be. It’s been described as a slice of “Nollywood” film-making – a reference to a Nigerian film industry that’s been pushing out movies for around 40 years. God’s Own Country stands as a somewhat leftfield arrival from a fledgling player – a move that signals a bright and diverse future for the international film industry.

You can find both the movie and mixtape download at gocmovie.com, alongside a nascent community forum that hopes to encourage the dissemination of acapellas and beats for collaboration. Register to download both, or stream the mixtape direct from the home page.

Morganics (Australia) – ‘Hip Hop Is My Passport’

If the name ‘Morganics‘ feels oddly familiar to you, yet you can’t quite put your finger on it, hit ‘Mango Pickle Down River’ on M.I.A.‘s ‘Kala’. A few seconds into the track and you’ll hear the Australian producer and MC giving himself a well-deserved namecheck. In fact, he deserves more than just a background call – kudos to Maya for promoting Aboriginal hip hop, however lest we forget – the track itself is actually a Morganics and Wilcannia Mob production from 2002, with a new verse dropped in for the ‘Kala’ release. The track is just a public high point in a long history of Morganics’ projects, most of which involve working with indigenous and under-privileged musicians around the South Pacific region.

In a 2004 interview, Morganics (aka Morgan Lewis) stated “We are here to create our own Australian language of hip hop and a big part of that, a unique part of any Australian identity, has got to be Indigenous people” – a statement that has essentially has been his guiding vision to date, in a story that now spans nearly three decades. He started breaking back in 1984 and was an integral part of the seminal Australian crew ‘Meta Bass’n’Breath‘ during the latter half of the 90s. Morgan has also made a solid name for himself locally as a theatre producer, staging shows at the Sydney Opera House, the Perth International Festival and overseas in the U.S. and UK.

Following last year’s production on the debut release for Tanzania’s Wayahudi Family, Morganics returns with his own signature release ‘Hip Hop Is My Passport’. If the blend of indigenous and contemporary hip hop production on ‘Down River’ enticed you, you’ll find a great deal more of the same Australian flavours on the album, alongside a broader geographical sweep that takes in Brazil, Berlin, Tokyo, Spain, The Bronx, Bali and more. It’s an exhilarating ride through the true colours of global hip hop, fiercely uncompromising yet erupting with positivity throughout. If you’re not already reaching the Visa card, bear in mind there’s a free DVD documentary bundled with the album. Get it all at vitamin.net.au.

Morganics plays out this Saturday (29th March) as part of ‘Uber Lingua – Charged!’ at the Abercrombie in Ultimo, Sydney. I’ll also be playing a set along with: “Cuban reggaeton performer Pochoman, Chinese-Malaysian dancer and vocalist WeiZen, Brasilian batucada percussion troop Timbalada, Local Gypsy-Jazz maestro Trevor Brown, Ghanaian Hip Hop producer MC Gee, Argentinian Cumbia performer MC Hernan – plus DJs Bruno LT (Rio de Janeiro), Mashy P, Jack Shit, Luke Snarl (Sub Bass Snarl), Bentley (Drop), Sven Simulacrum and from the Melbourne crew – sakamoiz and bP“. Quite a list – tickets 10 bucks from 7pm (Earth Hour) until late. Info at uberlingua.com/syd

Maga Bo & Xuman (Senegal) – ‘Fire’

Maga Bo‘s exploration of underground global sounds continues with the forthcoming release ‘Archipelagoes’ on dj/Rupture’s Soot Records. As a taster, Bo presented this clip on his Kolleidosonic blog – ‘Fire’ featuring Senegalese MC Xuman. Originally tucked in at the end of the 2007 mixtape ‘Confusion Of Tongues’ (one of Fat Planet’s Albums of 2007), ‘Fire’ is the first track to receive the video treatment with two more promised soon: ‘Saye Mbott’ featuring Alif, filmed in Dakar, and ‘Nqayi’ feat. Teba which was shot in Cape Town.

‘Shook’ magazine recently published an article from Maga Bo detailing his experiences of the Ethiopian music industry – you can read a short extract, titled ‘Electronics Merkato’ at their blog. Catch Maga Bo on a selection of dates throughout U.S. and Canada in April.

Birk Storm (Denmark) – ‘I Don’t Care’

Birk Storm is by his own admission both “new name” and “new music”, but his clarion call is one that we can all relate to: “electro/funk as it allways was ment to be” (sic). While not curating funk for the masses in his Copenhagen studio, ‘The Birk’ (as he likes to be known) acts as drummer-gun for hire for a clutch of Danish bands such as Band Ane and Outlandish – and beyond that, there’s little to be told and much to discover.

Signing with Danish label VUF (whose label compilations come highly recommended), 24-year old Birk launches himself into the ether with two singles: ‘I Dont Care’ and ‘Side By Side’ and a somewhat abstract video clip that allegedly documents the moment when Birk signed on the dotted label line. The debut full length drops on VUF in August.

More @ thebirk.dk.

Ghislain Poirier (Canada) – ‘Bounce Le Remix Vol.3’

Mr Poirier returns, fresh from the release of the excellent ‘No Ground Under’ album (Ninja Tune) with the third in his series of self-released remixes, blends, mash-ups and re-rubs. There’s no doubting the fact that Ghis is one of the most prolific remixers around, but even with such a rapidly expanding discography, he manages to keep the quality of mixes consistently high. More often than not he trumps the original in terms of both leftfield originality and ability to move inert rumps around the globe.

In his new collection, ‘Bounce Le Remix 3’, his love of dancehall and soca comes directly to the centre of play – forgoing some of the more obvious hipster subjects of the first two volumes for a celebration of hard Caribbean party jams.

mp3: LIL MAMA Lip Gloss (Ghislain Poirer Bounce Le Remix)

Get Bounce Le Gros Vol.3 direct from ghislainpoirier.com for a mere ten bucks.

More new material from Ghislain surfaces mid-April with the 2nd single release from ‘No Ground Under’ titled ‘No More Blood’ with mixes from the always on-point Deadbeat and Hudson Mohawke – and a further Sixtoo connection, providing the artwork.

Villa Diamante (Argentina) – ‘ZZK Mixtape Vol.1’

Another month, another mixtape from our most posted (and requested) Argentinean producer, Villa Diamante. This is the first mixtape release for ZZK Records (the label cousin of the Zizek club in Buenos Aires) and features some of Villa’s previously posted cumbia blends (such as Calle 13 vs Modeselektor or Dizzee vs Surtek) alongside a wave of new productions, seamlessly melded into an instamatic flash of the neuvo cumbia scene. Villa describes it thus: “destroying the geographic limits and vindicating mashups as a cultural intersection where copyright infringement becomes art. Digital Cumbia, Reggaeton, Hip Hop, don’t think about it, dance it!

ZZK Records continues its release schedule with a physical CD release titled ‘ZZK Sound Vol. 1 – Cumbia Digital’ – seventeen tracks from Zizek artists such as Oro 11, Fauan, El Remelon, Princesa and more. Worldwide shipping available from zzkrecords.com.

mp3: VILLA DIAMANTE – ZZK Mixtape Vol.1

Tracklisting:
Villa Diamante – Oro11 vs Kelis
Villa Diamante – Marcelo Fabian vs Tego Calder??n
Villa Diamante – El Trip Selector vs Voltio y Tego Calder??n
Princesa – I Feel So Good (El Remolon Mix)
Villa Diamante – Fauna vs M.I.A.
Toy Hernandez – Sones del Mexside / Sonidero Nacional
Villa Diamante – Dizzee Rascal vs Surtek Collective
Luisao – Bountycaderas
Zurita – Pa Pa Pare
Villa Diamante РChancha V??a Circuito vs Lil´ Mama
Los RocBoyz – Jigga vs Sonidero Nacional
Oro11 – Pibes Chorros vs DJ Unh – Que Calor
Princesa – (Frikstailers remix)
Villa Diamante – Frikstailers vs Calle 13
Fauna – El Ventilador (Daleduro Remix)
Cutty Ranks – Limb By Limb (Loder Booleg)
El Remol??n – Modeselektor vs Calle 13
Sonido Martines – Selva Cari?±o Rmx feat FeFe
Villa Diamante – Marcelo Fabian vs Homebwoi

Buraka Som Sistema (Portugal) – ‘The Sound Of Kuduro’

After an initital burst of excitement, it’s been a quiet year for Kuduro in terms of its exposure outside of Angola (Guillaume at Masala eloquently drew this into context last October). Of course, I’m sure that there remains a ferocious supply and demand culture within Angola, but – sitting so far outside of the source – we’ve been largely starved of new material. Portugal’s Buraka Som Sistema offer a glimmer of hope for a ‘second coming’ with their new track ‘The Sound Of Kuduro’.

I fully acknowledge that this clip has been through the blog rounds on various sites over the last few days, but I feel the need to represent and archive here on Fat Planet – particularly due to the quality of the guest talent involved: Znobia (who received the royal remix treatment from Diplo in July last year), Puto Prata (find a ‘megamix’ of some of his material at Likembe), Miss World Town – M.I.A and Subarosa.

It’s also good to see the Portuguese crew reconnect with the roots of Kuduro – Frederic Galliano was a little dismissive of non-Angolan Kuduro in our 2007 interview: “The kuduro in Portugal … Angolan people say this is ‘kuduro de blanco’, ‘kuduro of the white people’, because it is really cheap”. It feels like this track – particularly the definitive nature of the title – is the start of a mission to put such criticisms to rest. Stereogum notes that the forthcoming album is titled Black Diamond is due mid-year.

Mochipet (Taiwan) – ‘Get Your Whistle Wet’

Taiwan’s David Wang (last featured on Fat Planet back in 2006) has steadily and quietly amassed a bewildering repertoire of breakcore, glitch and semi-spontaneous noise under the Mochipet alias; the calibre of which has attracted a long queue of collabs with fellow machine wreckers such as Kid 606, Ellen Allien, Daedelus and Aaron Spectre.

Burning off the heels of the recent “Girls Love Breakcore” album comes “Microphonepet”, a rude best-of collection culled from recordings made over the last five years and released through Wang’s own Bay Area-based label Daly City Records. Wang grabs Jahcoozi, Dopestyle (Kutmaster Kurt), RQM (Al Haca) and more buddies along for the ride – a ride which has been blessed with a PR-sting which promises “Glitch, Dubstep, Jazz, Funk, Afrobeat, and Computer Rock”. ‘Get Your Whistle Wet’ tones down the random absurdity for a tight slab of electro-funk, a Euro-esque Baltimore jam that points to the fact that the Mochipet pony has more than a just a singular Breakcore kick in its repertoire.

Elsewhere in the Mochiverse, his “Dessert Search for Techno Baklava” (featured on the last FP post) has been recontextualised and represented for the string-set; currently performed by the 20-strong Alarm Will Sound orchestra at various locations around the world. Tonight (28 Feb) they hit NY’s Carnegie Hall in a performance that also ushers forth versions of tracks from Richard Aphex James, The Shaggs and that ‘righteous dude’ Ligeti.

More: dalycityrecords.com

DJ Amazing Clay (Brazil) – ‘Montagem Pela Ultima Vez’

If you’ve been following the Man Recordings story recently, you’ll be well aware of German baile funk MC Gringo and his recent release ‘Gringao’. The album was produced to a large degree by one of Rio’s longest standing funk DJs, Amazing Clay. By way of context, Man Rec’s latest release in ‘Baile Funk Masters’ series slots eight unique Clay productions back to back (including today’s download ‘Montagem Pela Ultima Vez’), and features contributions from MC Gus and Lady MC Betta. The 12′ represents long overdue international promotion for Clay whose DJ career stretches back some 27 years (circa ‘Planet Rock’, an early staple of Clay’s sets), founding ‘Equipe Curtisom Rio’ ‘ one of Rio’s earliest funk sound systems ‘ and production work for Mr Catra, Deize Tigrona and MC Dido. Given the endless recycling of key themes in funk carioca (‘Rocky’ being most notable), Clay is also given props for introducing ‘Bonanza’ into the mix. Whether or not we should be thankful remains to be seen ‘ download his cut from 2004 to judge for yourself.

For more in the funk vein, Man Rec boss Daniel Haaksman drops a ‘Funk Berlinioca’ mix for XLR8R, including Edu K, Switch, Marina (ex Bonde Do Role), Princess Superstar, new Stereotyp project Ku Bo and a ‘funk mashup’ of our favourite hopeless star, Amy Winehouse. There’s also a new mix from Clay available to download on the Mac Rec blog.

More: manrecordings.com
Buy: forced exposure

Clay’s one-handed funk production technique –

Nova (Indonesia) + Potato Master (Japan) – Uber System Remixed!

This Saturday, Uber Lingua returns to Sydney with Uber System Remixed: six live acts, seven DJs, an all-night “post-world” dancehall party. Representing live will be Rauberhole (Germany), Nova (Indonesia), Pochoman (Cuba), Potato Master (Japan), Gypsy Dub Sound System (Australia) and Black Symbol (Ghana), with DJ sets from myself, Lorna, Mashy P, bP, Sven Simulacram, BFG and Dub Chaman. Tickets ten bux (free mixtape for first 100) @ Abercrombie Hotel, Broadway. More info at http://www.uberlingua.com/

UBER REMIXED PREVIEW:

mp3: NOVA Arek Malang Kudu Seneng (feat MC SBY & Sven Simulacrum) [Indonesia]

Nova was born in Malang, East Java, daughter of well-known Indonesian guitarist Toto Tewel. She started rapping at the age of 19 with her co-conspirator Indry – debuting at a local basketball match – and, bagging a love of Lauren Hill on the way, Twin Sista was born. Following inclusion on the (excellent) ‘Perang Rap’ indonesian hip hop collection, their debut album (‘Mother Of Nature’) dropped in ’03. Following Indry’s move to Japan in 2005, Nova found herself adrfit, trying out both jazz and reggae, but neither suited her sound. A chance meeting with the team behind “It’s Hiphop Poetry Battle” has led to a new lease of hip hop life and last year, Nova headed back to Yogya to record her first solo single, ‘Dikawinkan Alam’.

mp3: POTATO MASTER Ichee Nee San Chee Ragga [Japan]

I had the good fortune to drop beats for Potato Master (above, right) at last year’s Bellingen Global Festival, where the MC also took home the title belt in the ‘Ya Lingo!’ multi-lingual freestyle face-off. It might have been his laconic Japanese drawl that won the crowd, but I suspect that the radiation suit / SARS mask combo also won a few hearts. The above mp3 is a good example of what he describes as his “funny music”, combining Japanese, English and utter gibberish.

Zizek (Argentina) – ‘Paris Of The South’ Goes North

Having posted many times over the last year on the current movements in the Argentinean music scene, I’d be entirely remiss if I didn’t give our North American readers a heads-up on the imminent Zizek tour. The Buenos Aires party palace has played host to many of the artists that we’ve come to know recently; blending cumbia, hip hop, electro, raggaeton, dancehall flavours ‘ artists such as Villa Diamnate, El Remolon, Frikstailers, Oro11, Sonido Martines, Princesa and swathes more. In March, the Zizek tour bundles up some of those players and drops them in SXSW, LA, San Francisco, NY and Chicago (with more to be announced). Full details at whatsupbuenosaires.com.

If you, like me, are scattered too far around the world to jet into the U.S. for the party season, then we can more than make do with the Zizek Tour 2008 EP ‘ download, burn, play and check the photos on the Zizek site for a semi-immerse experience.

Download: Zizek Tour 2008 EP (zipped)

Tracklisting:
AXEL K SOUNDSYSTEM Cumbieton Rutero
EL TRIP SELECTOR Cumbiancherita
FRIKSTAILERS Foonkie Boogie
KING COYA Petrona Martinez Remix feat. PG13 & Axel K
ORO 11 Pum Pum Cumbia
TREMOR Viajnate
EL REMOLON Andres Se Fue A La Villa

Fat Planet – ‘Best World Music’ on News.com.au

The dust hasn’t even settled on the recent decision by The Guardian to anoint Fat Planet as ‘Best Blog for World Music’, and here we are again. Today, news.com.au added their own voice, in an article titled ‘Free music downloads without the guilt’ featuring “the best free music sites from Australia and abroad”. Read the full article on their web site.

Here’s what they had to say:

Best world music:
With such a multicultural mix, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Australia hosts one of the world’s best world music websites. Stuart Buchanan started the blog as an accompaniment to his Fat Planet world music radio program on Sydney community radio station FBi. That was back in 2003, and the blog is now even more popular than the broadcast.

Buchanan is kicking off 2008 with a tour of the world in music, starting in Cuba with a band called Telmary who deliver Havana-based hip-hop. But the site also features a huge catalogue of free music dating back to July 2005, hailing from such diverse locations as Argentina and Algeria and such odd genres as Balkan Hot Step and home-grown “Didjetronica”.

Ólöf Arnalds (Iceland) – ‘Í Nýju Húsi’

On last night’s Fat Planet radio show, we had guest selector Stuart Rogers in the studio. Since 2005, Stuart has been producing audio and video podcasts for the Iceland Airwaves festival and has become – in his own words – something of a “specialist generalist” in the field of Icelandic music. Many of the vodcasts be found at icelandairwaves.com/podcast, or check the archive at youtube. I’ve posted a beautiful clip featuring Ólöf Arnalds above, performing Í Nýju Húsi from her debut album, Við og Við. As Stuart notes “Turns out that the guitar she pulled out of the case that day wasn’t hers and had trouble keeping tune, but she trucked on regardless.”

During the session, we played a track from the new Benni Hemm Hemm album ‘Ein I Leyni’ which is currently only distributed in Iceland, but you can buy online at Grapewire.net. Grapewire also stock releases from some of our other session artists, Hellvar, Mr Silla & Mongoose and Olaf Arnulds.

Telmary (Cuba) – ‘Ves (feat. Kumar)’

At the start of January, i kicked off a new segment on the radio show: The 2008 Fat Planet World Tour. The concept behind this somewhat absurd and ambitious project is to travel around the world in 50 weeks, focussing on one country each week. Obviously, a fair few are going to fall by the wayside in the process, but that’s what 2009’s for…

After hitting on Canada and Mexico, this week we’re in Cuba for a slice of ‘Buena Vista’-free tunes. If your view of international music was coloured by your local retail store, chances are you’d think Cuban music begins and end with the Social Club. As much as Wim Wenders did the world a favour by exposing the Club to the masses, it also forced a greater shadow over everything else and gave most retailers a ‘get out’ clause. Gripes aside, two compilations crop up time and time again on the shelves around Sydney which explore, in part, new Cuban sounds – ‘Reggaeton: Cuban Revolucion’ (Petrol Records) offers an exemplary list of newcomers and the unfortunately-titled ‘Urban Latino’ (Nascente) give us local contributions from Clan 537, Flaco Pro and Instincto.

Into this mix, I’d like to also offer up Telmary and her 2006 release ‘A Diario’. Starting out as part of Free Hole Negro and later joining Interactive, Telmary’s debut is described as, above all else, “distancing itself far from the ghosts that undermine Hip Hop of hispanic origin”. This is accompanied by references to positivity and unity in the lyricism, and turning ones back on “ill-advised confrontation and facile commercialism”. The project is grand in scale, with over fifty contributors, and the above mp3 – with its irresistible tabla-reggaeton vibe – is a precursor to another three tracks that are available on Telmary’s Myspace.

For deeper exploration, you might try the book and documentary ‘East Of Havana’ (though no oddly no album?) at eastofhavana.com. Other names that have pricked our attention include Annimo Consejo, Free Hole Negro, Cubanito 20.20, Gente De Zona, Wichy de Vedado and Los Aldeanos. As ever on Fat Planet, further finds are welcomed and encouraged…