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Ui

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Biography

Allied to the more organic, instrumental groovesters in the American post-rock scene led by Tortoise, Ui focuses on angular grooves provided by a dual-bass attack. The New York band was formed in 1990 by bassist Sasha Frere-Jones (formerly of the group Dolores and probably better known as a journalist than a musician) and drummer Clem Waldmann. The duo played several gigs, occasionally with additional bassist Alex Wright and DJ/percussionist David Weeks, before replacing them with bassist Wilbo Wright in 1991. The trio's first release, the 2-Sided EP, appeared in 1993 on the British Hemiola label. During 1995, the band recorded the Unlike EP in addition to another EP and single for Soul Static Sound. As part of a tour that year with Tortoise and Labradford, Ui signed a contract with Chicago's Southern Records. Their debut album, Sidelong, was released in 1996, followed by the Dropplike EP. The group collaborated with Techno Animal and Luke Vibert, among others in the experimental electronica underground, before teaming up with Stereolab for the Fires EP, released as Uilab. A second album, Lifelike, followed in 1998. After taking off for most of a year, the band reunited in 1999 for a European tour, a session for John Peel's program, and an EP titled The Iron Apple. The trio spent two years writing songs and playing on-and-off, then added bassist Erik Sanko for the recording of 2003's Answers. ~ John Bush