Song-By-Song: Fis – ‘The Blue Quicksand Is Going Now’

Olly Peryman aka New Zealand producer Fis, first properly caught our attention with his beautifully destructive and somatic ‘Preparations’ EP for Pop disrupters Tri-Angle in 2013. Shadows of his previous D&B-tinged pieces faintly haunted the edges of the amorphous tracks but it was almost impossible to pin down a particular sound, let alone attach a label. Around the same time he also released a notably more dour and brutal EP on New Zealand imprint Void Coms, before unleashing ‘Iterations’ for Tri-Angle in 2014 – which saw him move even further away from the style of his earliest works on Samurai Horo and Exit.

Having dropped the ‘Speech Spirits’ EP on London imprint Loopy last September, he’s back again on the label this time with his debut album ‘The Blue Quicksand Is Going Now’. A lot of his most alluring traits remain the same; this is highly tactile and emotive music with the ability to simultaneously hypnotise and confront you head on.

Peryman has also been working on a spellbinding audio visual live show that will make an appearance at experimental arts festival Berlin Atonal in August. It’s his second performance at the innovative event, where he’ll play at abandoned power plant Kraftwerk alongside artists such as Powell, Outside The Dream Syndicate and Shackleton, amongst others.

With the album out today, we had Fis on hand to guide us through the feelings, imagery and processes behind the tracks on his first full-length effort. Stream the album below and read on for his commentary…

Here’s a brief summary from Peryman about the release:

‘This was a new kind of exercise for me as I never really have words going around in my head when producing music. Music’s more about feelings and pictures for me. The album does have a ‘story’ though. I said to Mary Anne Hobbs previously, the album is about very simple things. Commitment to inner peace. Knowing that we live in connection and sharing with all things, we make music and it makes us in return, I wanted to put more love in my music so it could fill me and others with a deep peace too. It worked – over-thinking and negativity are melting away…’

1. The Blue Quicksand is Going Now

Wanted this to introduce everything but only briefly. Make its point and go, you know. I made this in my brother’s garage in Christchurch.

2. AK

One of the older ones on the record. Like most of this LP I wasn’t thinking ‘do this or do that’. To me AK is cycles of purple, pinks and reds, whites, rattle and fizz. Made this at my old flat in Hataitai, Wellington around late 2013.

3. Social

Rhythmically this ended up as the album’s most straight-forward tune. It has the most people in it too – like a congregation tune. Blues, yellows, bubbles and seaweed. Made this one at my Uncle’s house in Belgium.

4. Happy Alone

Another one from Belgium around EU tour-time last year. This one wrote itself – all over in an hour or two. Don’t read too much into the title. White, blue, grey, green and scratchy for me.

5. Pedal

Recorded on the piano at home in Sumner, New Zealand. Mic’d up the inside of the piano, I like the natural reverb in there. I played with the pedals and played the keys too. I wanted the subs to step forward and sit softly under the chin, like a scarf.

6. Frost Pocket

Also from Sumner, New Zealand. One of the more recent things on the record and another one that wrote itself. I sampled a metal-drumming tutorial off YouTube here.

7. Ebb.

This one has some of the more aggressive ends of the LP. It got pretty slicey and push-and-shove on me through the middle. Rough greys and harsh whites in the drums/rhythm. It relaxes out into colours eventually. This is also from Sumner, NZ.

8. Sub Larynx

Possibly the only tune with any kind of ‘I’ll do this now’ intention behind it. I just wanted to hear a sub-woofer talk. I like the idea of spoken sub-bass mantras repeating themselves into rhythms. The world of feelings to work with there is huge. I’ll do more like this in future projects.

9. Kal

The last thing that got made for the album and the final piece in the puzzle. I made this around the time I linked with Loopy to do the LP. That decision brought a huge sense of freedom and relief for me. A celebration track seemed a nice note to finish on.

‘The Blue Quicksand Is Going Now’ is out now on Loopy. Grab a copy here.

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