Stuart Maconie

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-06-06 Feed Me Weird Things

“Squarepusher’s debut record Feed Me Weird Things is our Featured Album and there’s even more weirdness for you to gorge yourself silly on, in the shape of music from Freaks of the Nosmo 9, Veik and The Wicker Man Soundtrack.”

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Stuart Maconies Freak Zone 2016-09-04

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-05-23 Caroline Catz on Delia Derbyshire

“Stuart chats to the director, writer and actress of a new docudrama which explores pioneering electronic composer Delia Derbyshire’s life and work. Titled ‘Delia Derbyshire: The Myths and the Legendary Tapes’, the experimental and intimate film features inventive recreated scenes starring Catz herself as well as interviews with Derbyshire’s peers and collaborators, including Throbbing Gristle founding member and radical performance artist Cosey Fanni Tutti. Stuart hears about what it was like representing the cult figure and the challenges she faced in her career whilst working in the legendary BBC Radiophonic Workshop.
The featured album is American jazz guitarist Sonny Sharrock’s 1969 debut album Black Woman. Recorded alongside his wife Linda who provides Yoko Ono-influenced vocals, the album also features an all star cast of New York-based free jazz musicians of the time including pianist Dave Burrell, drummer Milford Graves, trumpeter Teddy Daniel, and bassist Norris Jones amongst others. Black Woman is a hypnotic and psychedelic mix of manic guitar crescendos, dramatic trumpet solos, touches of eccentric country blues and bursts of melodic madness.
Plus, rural landscape-inspired organ compositions from Yorkshire, infectious experimental electro pop from Belgium and chilling abstract wind compositions made from hand-crafted ceramics.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-04-25 Micachu & The Shapes

“Featuring the sounds of the band’s clattering avant-pop debut Jewellery from 2009. The trio is fronted by classically trained musical maverick Mica Levi flanked by their band made up of Raisa Khan and Marc Pell. Distorted electronica, scratchy guitars, over-processed chanting vocals, swoonsome wails and razor sharp melodies create an insanely catchy, playful and chaotic mess. Jewellery was the first of two albums made by Micachu & The Shapes which has since seen Levi collaborate with the likes of Oliver Coates, Arca and the London Sinfonietta amongst others. Levi has also received BAFTA and Academy Award nominations for their intoxicating original film scores to Under The Skin and Jackie.
Plus, piercing Taiwanese horror soundtracks, 1970’s prog rock and melancholic electronica inspired by telephone hold music.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-04-18 Beverly Glenn-Copeland

“In light of it’s recent 35th anniversary and long-awaited reissue, Stuart revisits the artist’s meditative ambient synth album from 1986 Keyboard Fantasies. Originally self-released on cassette into obscurity, Glenn-Copeland remained a non-entity to the music-curious public until the age of 72 when an influential rare-record collector from Japan sent him a life-altering email asking for any remaining physical copies of the album. Ever since, the artist has finally been enjoying global praise and commercial recognition with Keyboard Fantasies being referenced by contemporary electronic superstars like Four Tet and Caribou amongst others. Ethereal and soothing, the album uses smooth minimal vocals and synthesizers to bring together elements of folk, ambient and electronica to create a sound realised far before its time.
Plus, avant-rock, eerie and foreboding poetry paired with drone and folk inspired by abandoned railway stations found in England’s countryside.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-04-04 Hudson Mohawke

“Featuring the sounds of the maximalist electronic producer’s melodic 2009 debut album Butter. Hudson Mohawke a.k.a. Ross Birchard was quickly snatched up by Warp Records after making his legendary 2005 mixtape ‘Hudson’s Heeters’ as a teenager from his bedroom in Glasgow. Since then, and at spectacular speed, Hudson Mohawke has become one of world’s ‘super-producers’ and in turn has singularly changed the sound of rap by working with genre titans like Kanye West, Drake, Future and Pusha T to name just a few. Made when he was just 23, Butter is a blindingly bright and frenetic world of screaming guitar riffs, tripped-up drum patterns, euphoric pitch-shifted melodies and heavy bass.
Plus, meandering improvised guitar duets, organ-based experimental pop inspired by Northern Ireland’s social history and atmospheric dungeon synth that is raising funds for mental health charities. Also on the show, appearances from Freak Zone favourites Anna Meredith, Ivor Cutler and Sockethead.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-03-28 The Freaky Side of the 6 Music Festival

“Stuart has raided the archives and features his top highlights from the festival’s most experimental acts ahead of 2021’s virtual edition. Along with a brand new socially-distanced session recorded this year by Black Country New Road, Stuarts looks back on an exhilarating performance by Anna Meredith from the 6 Music Festival 2020 held in Camden. Plus, more sets and backstage interviews from the station’s very first festival held in Manchester in 2014 with the The Part Time Heliocentric Cosmo Drama After School Club’s joyous tribute to the Sun Ra Arkestra and the pioneering and legendary Radiophonic Workshop.
Elsewhere on the show, philosophical extreme metal from New York, intense Indonesian avant-rock composed with homemade instruments and brooding euro-dance inspired electronica from Norway.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-03-21 Labradford

“Stuart looks back on the Virginian post-rock band’s 1999 minimalist landmark album E Luxo So, comprising six instrumental tracks that make a poignant and restrained record. Instrumental contributions come from a string quartet, gorgeous bubbly electronic piano, dulcimer arrangements, subtle blips of percussion and plangent organ. An engrossing and hypnotic listen, E Luxo So was Labradford’s most overt move towards ambient music.
Elsewhere on the show, Peter Brötzmann’s explosive free jazz saxophone inspired by the mechanisms of war, radiophonic soundtracks to cult 1970’s children’s TV and heartwarming outsider pop from Freak Zone favourite Arthur Russell.”

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Stuart Maconies Freak Zone 2016-09-04

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-03-14 Slow Dance Records

“Stuart hears from GG Skips, co-founder of the London-based DIY arts and music label. Born in 2015 initially as a zine and party collective when many of its founders were just eighteen, Slow Dance’s output meets at the intersection of post-punk and experimental electronic production. They have put on shows in the legendary Windmill Brixton and Royal Academy of Arts as well as being early nurturers of some of Freak Zone’s favourite talent such as Black Midi, Jockstrap and Bunny Hoova.
The featured album this week is Mark Stewart & Maffia’s debut collaboration ‘Learning To Cope With Cowardice’ from 1983. After The Pop Group disbanded, frontman and visionary post-punk iconoclast Mark Stewart joined forces with dub producer Adrian Sherwood to create the groundbreaking record that’s a profoundly disorienting, claustrophobic and an intense critique on the cold war. Inspired by early hip hop and Stewart’s prolonged trip to New York the year before recording; bass lines support a mangled coagulation of screams, yelps and rants about lurking terror, political machination and urban dread.
Also on the show, sprightly jazz from 1980’s Japan, dreamy harp arrangements from L.A. and experimental electronics inspired by London’s landscape and concrete architecture.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-03-07 Meredith Monk

“To celebrate International Women’s Day, Stuart looks back on the avant-garde composer and vocalist’s epic and emotional 1981 album Dolmen Music. The American performer, producer, and all-round unclassifiable artist’s record centres around ritualistic beats and repetitive wordless phonetic sounds that explore the voice’s elasticity, fragility and ability to change. Sounding at once ancient and modern, the strange visceral sounds of Dolmen Music has been described as “folk music for the whole world”.
Elsewhere on the programme, playful and mellow Taiwanese math rock, eerie and foreboding saxophone arrangements and ethereal experimental electronic and pseudoclassical piano mutations. Plus, tracks from Freak Zone’s favourite Nico, Laurel Halo and Laurie Anderson amongst others.”

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Stuart Maconies Freakier Zone 2014-01-25 Techno Oddities

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-02-28 Coil

“Stuart revisits the experimental duo’s surreal and dark 1991 album Love’s Secret Domain to mark it’s upcoming reissue. Moving away from their previous penchant for brooding synthesizers and melodies, the album marked a significant jump towards using samples, having been inspired by acid house and heavy nights spent in the grips of the UK rave scene. Love’s Secret Domain is a painstakingly multi-layered psychedelic electronic beast, vibrating with acidic synths, pulsing dance beats and twists and twirls of over-processed snippets of speech.
Elsewhere in the show, bizarre and meandering 1980’s German synthpop, ultra rare punchy garage rock from 1960’s New Mexico and elegantly haunting modern classical arrangements for detuned pianos.”

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Stuart Maconies Freakier Zone 2014-01-25 Techno Oddities

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-02-21 Remembering SOPHIE

“In light of SOPHIE’s recent passing, Stuart celebrates the visionary artist’s maximalist hyperpop album from 2015 Product. Setting the stage for SOPHIE’s later Grammy nominated album Oil of Every Pearl’s Un-Insides, it was Product that first carved out an irresistible niche within electronic and pop music for the Scottish-born artist. Radically futuristic, the album features ecstatic chiptune vocals, pitch bent synths and glossy metallic production that clangs, snaps and collapses with extraordinary kinetic energy. The young auteur collaborated with Madonna as well as underground royalty like Arca, Charli XCX and Shygirl.
Also in the show, melodramatic Latin folk and experimental cello arrangements, field recordings made in the Australian outback and brooding rap odes to long nights and heavy mornings spent in England’s North.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-02-14 Be Good To Yourself

“Stuart presents an adventurous playlist of soothing and healing soundscapes as part of this month’s Escape with 6 Music season. Squashing any notions of new age’s banality, join us for a fresh and eclectic blend of music from around the world that promotes restoration, mindfulness and positivity.
Unwind and reconnect to the deep vibrating tones of Tibetan singing bowls, delicate Indian santoor arrangements and epic 1980’s cosmic ambient inspired by the Earth’s complex orchestration. Including tracks from Freak Zone favourites Bjork, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith and Fripp & Eno.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-02-07 Jean-Cohen Solal

“Featuring the sounds of the French jazz flautist’s audacious 1973 genre-bending album Captain Tarthopom. Showcasing Solal’s incredible skills as an arranger and improviser as well as a tremendously expressive flutist, it’s no wonder that he famously said in a 1972 interview, “I express feelings more easily with the flute than with language”. Captain Tarthopom is a meeting between psychedelic and progressive rock sensibility with the potent influence of avant-garde and classical ideas. Along with flute, the album is a jubilant blend of roaring bass, operatic vocals, pulsing organs and triumphant brass sections.
Plus, gorgeous neoclassical ambient scores for dance theatre from A Winged Victory For The Sullen, anthemic experimental rap from London-based duo XVOTO and apocalyptic English folk rock inspired by love and death.”

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Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-01-31 MF Doom

“In light of the underground rapper’s recent passing, Stuart celebrates the wordsmith’s seminal 2004 album Madvillainy. Made as a collaboration between enigmatic MF DOOM and hip-hop producer Madlib, the pair released the album under the group name Madvillain. An alliance dripping in chemistry, the two blend together intricate wordplay, woozy rhythms, wildly inventive production and an eclectic roll call of samples from Steve Reich, ZZ Top and Gentle Giant to name only a few. Contemporary rap and hip-hop figureheads such as Tyler The Creator, Earl Sweatshirt and Flying Lotus have all cited Madvillainy’s influence, regarding it as an undisputed hip-hop classic for the new millennium.
Plus, melodic 1980’s Japanese synth pop, jubilant 1970’s liberation jazz and otherworldly electronic operatic arrangements.”

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Stuart Maconies Freakier Zone 2014-01-25 Techno Oddities

Stuart Maconie’s Freak Zone 2021-01-24 Flying Saucer Attack

“Featuring the Bristolian DIY duo’s melancholic ‘rural psychedelia’ album from 1995, Further. Widely considered as Flying Saucer Attack’s quintessential album, David Pearce and Rachel Brook’s second release blends together the sounds of kosmische, folk and dream pop. Shoegaze guitar, synth, white-noise and vocals cloaked in a thick blanket of distortion create an evocative world that is at once ethereal and sinister.
Plus, vibrant Anatolian rock with a Euro-pop twist, haunting Irish doom folk and experimental electronics inspired by the late British modernist sculptor Barbara Hepworth.”

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