The inscrutable J.G. Thirlwell was dropped on this planet some time ago to bestow sonic majesty, chaos, violence & beauty and cunning linguistics on an unsuspecting earth.
A Brooklyn-based Australian ex-pat, Thirlwell has used many names for his many visions: Foetus (and its many name variations), Steroid Maximus, Clint Ruin, Wiseblood, DJ OTEFSU, Manorexia and Baby Zizanie. His multitude of influential recordings under the name FOETUS and variations thereof (including Scraping FOETUS off the Wheel, the FOETUS All-Nude Revue, FOETUS Inc., etc.), has amassed a rabid world-wide cult following. Over the course of more than a dozen albums he has stretched from yearning orchestral soundscapes, meticulously organized chaos, electronic swathes, blistering big band pastiche, crunching hard rock and even inventing stupefying collisions of genres and forms with a raw emotion and irresistible musicality.
His instrumental Steroid Maximus project contains JG’s cinematic stylings of encompassing haunting soundscapes, twisted neo-blaxploitation, spy/crime noir-intrigue, sinuous carnal funk, soundtracks of the unimagined and ethnic music from civilisations yet to be conceived, among other things! It was this project that led to his re-imagining of this music to be played live by a nineteen-piece ensemble, including brass and string sections and concert percussion, with musical director Steven Bernstein.
As Manorexia, JG exorcises even darker instrumental inclinations over two self released albums, Volvox Turbo and The Radiolarian Ooze. Baby Zizanie, a collaboration with Jim Coleman, allowed him to explore improvisation and collaboration via laptop with visual backdrops on several European tours.
An accomplished re-mixer and producer, he’s worked his magic on the likes of NIN, White Zombie, JSBX, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Coil and countless others. JGT has also worked in film and even voiceovers for MTV.
His acclaimed graphic design appears on his sleeve as well as gracing several magazine covers and fine art lithographs.
More recently JG has also branched out into audio installations (the freq_out project curated by CM Von Hausswolf, with whom he also conducted an audio workshop at the Stadelschule in Frankfurt), DJ-ing (as DJ Otefsu), has appeared in an opera (Der Kastanienball in Munich in 2004, directed by Stefan Winter), has scored a cartoon series for The Cartoon Network in the USA (The Venture Brothers), and recently completed a commission for Bang On A Can. In 2005 he will be writing his first commission for Kronos Quartet, which will premier in 2006.
Thirlwell's new album as FOETUS, entitled LOVE (the latest in his use of four-letter one syllable titles) will be accompanied by a DVD with videos directed by such notables as Karen O (of the YeahYeahYeahs), Kurt Ralske and Jeremy Solterbeck, among others. It is a sweeping dramatic epic drenched in harpsichord and orchestras with jarring left turns, bombast and seduction.