Fire-Toolz makes extreme easy-listening music for rabid cartoon fish | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Fire-Toolz makes extreme easy-listening music for rabid cartoon fish

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Chicago sound artist, multi-instrumentalist, and noise weirdo Angel Marcloid creates meticulously teetering collages out of vivisected bits of various incongruous genres under several different monikers. She’s already put out two albums this year: March’s Bubble Universe! (Hausu Mountain), where she appears as Nonlocal Forecast, has a gently frothy ambience that verges on jazzy fusion before sliding into semi-ironic new age. Tonight she celebrates the second album, the recent Field Whispers (Into the Crystal Palace), released under the name Fire-Toolz by the Orange Milk label. The album traverses some of the same ground as Bubble Universe!, but it’s more aggressive and noisy; it sounds like comforting elevator music being devoured by rabid locusts. The impossibly titled “Mailto:spasm@swamp.god?subject=Mind-Body Parallels” kicks off with an easy-listening Muzak groove that Marcloid interrupts with shrieking black-metal vocals over Aphex Twin-like glitch beats—and then the track defaults back to smooth sounds. “She Was Me, My Name Was Surrounded” has a catchy rock-guitar hook that evaporates into fruity upbeat electronics. Her video for “✓ BEiNG,” which includes screen-saver geometric shapes, cartoon fish swimming in a cloudy sky, the world on fire, and Marcloid playing guitar like a rock god, nicely captures the range of her fractured interests. Some musicians want to be demons; some want to be Hello Kitty; some want to be wallpaper. Marcloid is perhaps the only one who manages to be all of them at once.   v

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