fugitive frequency episode 09: Rhythmic Intelligence

‘Rhythmic Intelligence’ (RI) is a phrase coined by theorist and artist Kodwo Eshun when writing about hip hop and jungle in the late 1990s:

rhythm isn’t really about notes or beats, it’s about intensities, it’s about crossing a series of thresholds across your body. Sound doesn’t need any discourse of representation, it doesn’t need the idea of discourse or the signifier: you can use sound as an immediate material intensity that grabs you. When you hear a beat, a beat lands on your joints, it docks on the junction between your joints and articulates itself onto your joints, it seizes a muscle, it gives you this tension, it seizes you up, and suddenly you find your leg lifting despite your head. Sound moves faster than your head, sound moves faster than your body. What sound is doing is triggering impulses across your muscles … Anywhere you have a sense of tension, that’s the beginning, that’s the signs of a bodily intelligence switching itself on.

This hasty live mix is a rehearsal for a livestream club that fugitive-radio is proposing to host during the darker, colder months of Northern Europe to chase and perhaps harness urban bass musics’ ‘forward pressure’. The idea is not to fence in sound with concepts, trace histories or perform political alignments, but rather to simply play ‘what grabs you’.

Writing around the trajectories of jungle in the 1990s and early 2000s Simon Reynolds observed a ‘Hardcore Continuum’ across the UK and North America of mutating, viral and infectious urban dance music. Technologically enabled, such music culture can be read as an Afrofuturist extension of Black Modernity, that Eshun (1998) traces as a kind of alien and inhuman intelligence. As such, mixes such as this attempt to make a situation conducive to opening up towards sound and, as Eshun observed, to be ‘abducted by audio’.

Notably, livestream clubs operating during lockdowns have shifted the experience of such music. ‘Clubbing’, for want of a better word, is not what it used to be! It now seems unusual to enter a club and lose oneself amongst other dancing bodies, although new waves of illegal raves are undoubtably sprouting in urban peripheries. Infectious rhythms don’t rely on physical proximity to spread, but they are nevertheless a consequence of touch. Shifting air pressure presses on the eardrum and pulses through other bodily organs; RI inhabits the ‘sensual mathematics’ of code and vibration that is digital music production (Goodman 2010), the synthetic imagination of machines and the spontaneous alchemy of the mix.

I am curious about the capacity of such sound cultures to produce affects, fictions, modes of identification, and what theorist, DJ and producer Steve Goodman AKA Kode 9 describes as an ‘unorthodox hallucinatory [R]ealness’ (2010). While sound, as Eshun argues, ‘doesn’t need any discourse of representation’ music experiences and sound cultures certainly produce them, and many, such as myself, enter into these tribes via such means. (Notably, Eshun introduced and the term ‘sonic fiction’ to describe the interacting narratives and myth-science-poetics of artists, listeners and communities who collectively produce music cultures). Thinking through sounding infrastructures, such as sound systems, audio streaming platforms and peer-to-peer networks, we could draw on rhythmanalysis to consider how networked intelligences, software automation and mutating (narcosonic) music traditions shape bodies, shift behaviours, and induce states of subjectivation.

Track list
Arash Pandi – Chargah
DJ Spinn – Crazy ’n’ Deranged
KABLAM – For Hildegard
Iyer – Ratnam’s Riddim (Nonfuture Remix)
Badawi – No Schnitzel (Machinedrum Remix)
Mark Pritchard – Manabadman (Instrumental)
Jlin – Carbon 7
DJ Rashad – Love U
Rizzla – Dick
Air Max ’97 – Hounded
Subjex – Fractal Geometry
Gant-Man – Distorted Sensory (Kode 9 Remix)
DJ Rashad – Let It Go
Jlin – Asylum
RP Boo – Off Da Hook
Nkisi – Parched Lips
Iyer – Rakkama, Clap Your Hands (Wellbelove Remix)
Si Begg – Sick and Tired of the Bullshit
Zomby – Kaliko
Elysia Crampton – Oscollo (drums only version)

fugitive frequency episode 08: The H Word.

Defund the Humbolt Forum

‘The H Word’ is an audio document of the protest against the opening of the Humboldt Forum in Berlin, Tuesday 20 July. Featuring the voices of Jumana Manna (Coalition of Cultural Workers Against the Humbolt Forum), Mnyaka Sururu Mboro (Berlin Postkolonial), Jeff Kwasi Klein (Each One Teach One), Nataly Jung-Hwa Han (Koreaverband), Michael Küppers Adebisi (Afrotak TV cyberNOMADS) and those of many other protestors.

fugitive frequency episode 07: La Cabaret

La Cabaret – Nail polish

‘Welcome to La Cabaret, an open invitation to mix politics and pleasure, with the energy of cabarets, queer bars and block parties to celebrate that despite all the struggles, we can make room for joy.’

‘La Cabaret’ was a post-porn salon of sorts, curated and hosted by Irina Muttin in her share apartment in Rastila, East Helsinki. First broadcast live on June five on {openradio}, it features Frau Diamanda, Elina Nissinen, lintulintu, Yes Escobar and Roxana Savdo amongst other guests.

fugitive frequency episode 02: Homing

Sveaskog

fugitive radio: fugitive frequency will be broadcasting on the first Tuesday every month at 17.00 CET on CoLaboRadio, Freie Radios – Berlin Brandenburg: 88,4 MHz in Berlin, 90,7 MHz in Potsdam and streaming on https://fr-bb.org/

fugitive frequency episode 2 is themed ‘homing’. It refers to an instinct characteristic of certain animals that are able to find their way back to their homes, and also to technological devices that enable missiles to seek and hit their targets. ‘Homing’ serves as prompt to think about how to navigate and position oneself in a globalised world. Also, how does one make a home under conditions that are increasingly inhospitable; due to structural violence, colonialism, climate change, etc. Episode 02 is another patchy audio essay featuring the music of Sofia Jannok, Maxida Märak, A Tribe Called Red, Mari Boine and MF DOOM; the voices of Timimie Märak and John Trudell and a conversation with Jari Tamminen.

– – – – – – – –

Links related to the people and themes discussed in this episode.

Sofia Jannok
http://sofiajannok.com/

Árvas Foundation
‘Árvas tundra is the name of the wide open tundra where Sofia Jannok’s home is around, in Luokta-Mávas Sámi reindeer herding district on Swedish side of Sápmi. Árvas tundra is roadless land, undestroyed by machines and been generously taken care of the indigenous Sámi people for generations. Árvas means ‘generous’. Above all Árvas tundra is grazing land for the reindeer, our source of life, our protector and our future.
http://arvasfoundation.com/

Respect Luokta-Mávas right to protect their ancestral land
Sign the petition: https://www.mittskifte.org/petitions/standwithluoktamavas

Gabriel Kuhn 2020, Liberating Sápmi, PM Press.
https://pmpress.org/index.php?l=product_detail&p=1051

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by PM Press (@pmpress)

An interview by The Final Straw Radio (TFSR) with Maxida Märak, a Sami activist and hip hop singer, and Gabriel Kuhn, an anarchist activist, translator and author, about Kuhn’s book ‘Liberating Sápmi: Indigenous Resistance in Europe’s Far North’. The book contains a political history of the Sámi people, whose traditional lands extend along the north most regions of so-called Sweden, Norway, Finland, and parts of Russia, as well as interviews conduced with over a dozen Sámi artists and activists. This interview was published originally in June 2020 (from Anarchist Radio Berlin).

Maxida Märak

A Tribe Called Red

Timimie Märak

John Trudell Radio Free Alcatraz

Jacob Pagano 2019, ‘The Pirate Radio Broadcaster Who Occupied Alcatraz and Terrified the FBI’.

More videos at the Bay Area Television Archive

Mari Boine

Jari Tamminen
Spektaakkeli Akatemia

Shop Till You Drop Dead (2020)

MF DOOM

fugitive frequency on CoLaboRadio in 2021.

www.colaboradio.org

Fugitive Radio: Fugitive Frequency will be broadcasting on the first Tuesday every month at 17.00 CET on CoLaboRadio, Freie Radios – Berlin Brandenburg: 88,4 MHz in Berlin, 90,7 MHz in Potsdam and streaming on https://fr-bb.org/

Episode 01, ‘Born to be Wireless’ is an audio essay of sorts, sketching out some of the issues and themes that will be explored in the coming year, such as: feminist and anticolonial network infrastructures, politics of remix, antiracist media activism. It features the voices of Fernanda Monteira, Gilberto Gil, Amoc, Ailu Valle, Jenni Laiti and Suohpanterror! amongst others.