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A project of Portland, Oregon-based DJ and multi-instrumentalist Paul Dickow — also a member of Nudge and Fontanelle — Strategy fuses dub, funk, house, disco, ambient, and pop into a uniquely shimmering, free-flowing, genre-defying sound. Dickow began working as Strategy in 1999, using an intricate and deeply layered approach that he debuted with 2001's Counter-Clangs single on Archigramophone. He released his first full-length, Strut, two years later on Outward Music Company, and also remixed a track for Stars as Eyes on the Tigerbeat6 label. Singles and EPs on ORAC and Shockout followed. In 2004, Strategy debuted on Kranky with Drumsolo's Delight, which had a more structured feel than his debut. Dickow also founded the Community Library label with David Chandler, aka Solenoid; the label released Strategy's 2005 12" single World House. Remixes for Nice Nice, the Blow, and the Juan Maclean followed, along with 2006's Fields of May single. Future Rock, Strategy's most complex yet accessible work to date, was released in 2007. Ambient album Music for Lamping arrived on Audio Dregs early the following year. This was followed the by Krautrock-influenced Electric Soup EP on Low Point and blown-out dub 7" Noise Tape Reggae on Entr'acte.
Strategy kept quiet for the next couple years, only issuing two limited 3" CD-R releases in 2009. The project returned to vinyl in 2011 with the EP Super Awareness Is Fruit on U.K. label Under the Spire. Deep house single "The Fixer" appeared on Japanese label Endless Flight shortly after. 12" EP Boxy Music surfaced on Not Not Fun sub-label 100% Silk in early 2012. 7" single "Dub in My System" appeared on ZamZam Sounds that summer, along with another 12" on Endless Flight, "Luna." In September, Strategy's ambitious self-titled LP, featuring appearances by guest musicians including Thomas Meluch (Benoit Pioulard) and Fred Thomas, was the first released on Los Angeles-based Peak Oil. Cassette What If? was issued by Boomarm Nation by the year's end. 2013 saw Strategy nod to the U.K. house scene with the 12" single "Return from the Stars" on Idle Hands. Another dub-influenced 7" on ZamZam Sounds, "Clocky Man," appeared at the end of the year.
Strategy returned to Peak Oil in 2014 with the rave-influenced Pressure Wassure 12" EP. Cassette releases also appeared on 100% Silk (Boxology) and Field Hymns (Cerebral Hut aka Off the Grid) that year. 2015 saw the release of three full-length Strategy LPs: related albums Seeds of Paradise (on Idle Hands) and Pods of Punishment (on Entr'acte) both arrived in March, and Noise Tape Self (containing tape loop pieces recorded between 2008 and 2010) was released by Further Records in June. The same label also put out Strategy's next album, Information Pollution, in February of 2016. ~ Heather Phares & Paul Simpson, Rovi