Claiming a huge range of influences including Daniel Miller, Frank Zappa, P-Funk, Steve Reich and many more weird and wonderful acts is Ff. Not a funny Welsh consonant but a band and art collective made up of Antronhy of Bivouac and Dave W. of White Hills. A little bit disco, a lot of synths and vocals like you might expect given their influences. Pink vinyl.
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Give it a minute to find its footing, will you? ‘Ffeeling’ is Ff’s first record, and after a little instrumental segue that came from nowhere and is also going nowhere, things start to happen: the synths light up, the beats degenerate and a pop song begins. Or, half a pop song: some whispered vocals groan their way into the song, like Factory Floor falling uncaringly backwards, and then a long outro of buzzsaws takes its place. A brief moment of subliminal bliss is all you’re getting for now.
Ff cite a wide range of influences, chief among them Steve Reich, but their sound is that of a noisy disco band reckoning with the apocalypse. Occasionally a rhythm or a melody materialises, but they can just as easily be thrown out of the way for dissonant crackle and decadent sounding effects. Mood-killing isn’t a problem in this kind of music -- it’s the operative theme, suggesting that your intuitions, your lack of inhibitions, are only good for as long as the world allows them to be. Then it’s gonna come in and kick some ass. ‘Ffeeling’ begins with a hint of dance and then gets manipulated into different types of ambience: from soft and beautiful to harsh and nihilistic.
Somehow it all kind of works: the anonymous aesthetic Ff create with their music makes ‘Ffeeling’ sound strangely whole -- even as the band traverse primitive acoustic territory, melding it with swirling, carsick synth. In a strange way, it sounds like Ff’s biggest influence might be that of J Dilla or Robert Pollard -- artists who are thrifty with their melodies and sonic innovations, choosing to use them quickly and then following them up with a collection of shocking, entirely different sounds. The whole thing gets along, even if none of it is related.
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