Sunday, September 27 2015
It’s not enough to call Strategy a producer of electronic music; Portland-based Paul Dickow stretches his skills among ambient and dub, high-spirited techno, house and sound art, all couched in musicianship and a community-minded DIY weird-punk approach. As complex and nuanced as his music can be, it’s not distractingly ornate: Dickow embraces certain low-fi aesthetics, layering dubby tones, crunchy noise and exacting rhythms using high-tech hardware and instruments of varying vintages, mixers, machines of his own making and effects strung strategically together. Recording as Strategy since 1999, Dickow released albums Futurerock and Drumsolo’s Delight on Kranky in the mid-2000s, 12-inches on Toshiya Kawasaki’s Endless Flight, and most recently, albums on Peak Oil and Field Hymns, followed by 2014’s Boxology on 100% Silk. He co-runs independent label Community Library and plays electronic noise, keyboards and drums in underground-sound bands Fontanelle, Nudge and several others, an ongoing influence that bleeds into his stage and studio time as Strategy.