“SONG FOR EWE” is the feature where artists & music people beloved by VELVET SHEEP choose an obscure song they’ve been listening to that day. Today’s guests are a dynamic duo called Ultraflex that feature a former VS “song for ewe” star Farao (from Norway) and Special-K (from Iceland). Last time on here, Farao chose Soviet prog house / disco with time signatures that were truly out of this world, she also took a selfie with said record, which to be fair is above and beyond the call of duty. So taken was I with Farao’s choices, when I was a guest on my mate Johny Brown’s (Band of Holy Joy) radio show BAD PUNK on Resonance FM, I proceeded to play both Farao’s “Lula Loves You” and her pick Eduard Artemiev “Meeting On The Milky Way”, which went down a treat I can tell you! When I learned of Farao’s latest project, there was no way I wasn’t asking for a second song choice! And it’s double trouble as I’ve got one from Special-K too. And since in this country at least Special-K is a breakfast cereal, having a bonus song choice felt like when you used to get those spangly plastic toys in the bottom of the cereal packet – a real visceral treat. Especially as Ultraflex’s mix of fun, kitschy yet esoteric electro music harkens back to the 80s (when I was a young’un). So I extend an extremely warm welcome to Velvet Sheep, Ultraflex!
Check out the video by their friend OKAY KAYA for “Work Out Tonight”, one part Madonna “Justify My Love”, one part Olivia Newton-John “Let’s Get Physical” and a third Stereolab.
Farao and Special-K met when they were both living in Berlin and had artistically admired each other from across the dance floor (remember those?)
They had a chance to work together when they were commissioned to compose a piece for the Scandinavian electronic music festivals Insomnia and Extreme Chill in 2019. After wood-shedding in the remote Westfjords of Iceland, the arctic Tromsø and Berlin, they emerged not bleary-eyed but starry-eyed with the spangly vision that is Ultraflex – and the album appropriately titled ‘Visions of Ultraflex’ is a heady mix of retro-future jams, and arch-pop camp. Live (remember that?) they perform exercise routines in sync with visuals based on 80s Soviet aerobics (not surprising given Farao’s last “song for ewe” choice), which is one of multitudinous reasons why they’re a must see once we’re through the Covid restrictions on night life. Ultraflex are absolutely made for the night life let’s be honest. I mean, look at the cat suits and the shopping trolley press shot, if that’s not the aftermath of a glorious night out with two cats that got the cream I don’t know what is?
Needless to say, self-effacing humour permeates the work of these two mavericks, and with that in mind, they’ve chosen a kindred spirit, so without further ado, here’s Ultraflex’s jointly selected “song for ewe” – check it out, it’d be rude not to.
“Leoncie – ENGINN ÞRIKANTUR HÉR (NO THREESOME HERE)
Really interesting style, ahead of her time: the DIY DV camera looks, the fashion choices, the cheezy synth sounds. She was mocked by the Icelandic community, so we want to stress that we’re not choosing this song ironically, we think it rocks! Besides being a skilled composer and keyboardist, she sports outfits that show off her favourite features (kind of Cardi B) and refuses to accept any bullshit. The lyrics declare that she is willing to do many sexual things for her partner (who makes an appearance in the video), but she won’t engage in a threesome with a blow up doll, fair. It’s clear that she produces everything herself (music and videos) – an independent artist with something to say, zest and sense of humour.”
Ultraflex’s “Visions of Ultraflex” is out on 30th October, and you can grab it on Bandcamp here…
Here’s that first Farao “song for ewe” which is well worth checking out too.
And the BAD PUNK radio show in full where as a guest I selected Farao and her Soviet house “song for ewe” pick…
MANY THANKS TO FARAO, SPECIAL-K AND TO FRANKIE DAVISON AT STEREO SANCTITY PR