canadian nautiluss is one of a bunch of new producers helping to re-align what we all think of turbo. 2012 has seen the label hone in on a fresh brand of techno away from the raucous offerings of the its past, and though this is not nautiluss’ first ep of the new era, it is most certainly his strongest. his last, alpha, felt a little like a producer finding his feet: on paper it was solid, but in reality it lacked a little something, where habitat feels much more like the finished article.
all four tracks are techno of sorts, but with restless hooks and off kilter sounds layered on top to keep things refreshingly dynamic. ‘depth charge’ is as underwater sounding as you might expect – clanging wrought iron sounds ring out across a deep sea bed as sonar like blips and radio commands echo all around. ‘surefit’ sounds like surges of electric charge rushing over quick-licked and sandy hi hats as grumbling bass and beats wrestle with each other down below.
‘sunder’, on the otherhand, seems to pair house percussion with a more cantering and freeform bottom end. razor edged synths circle all around like an oceanic predator whilst plenty of synthesized blips and bleeps fill in the spaces. ‘stygian’ is a more introverted and sombre workout built on broken beats. harmonic bell sounds ring out in a treacherous night sky and the overall vibe is one of paranoia. throughout this ep, surfaces are metallic in hue and abstract in design, yet come together with an almost metropolitan sheen and sleekness. everything feels clean and alive, busy and bustling like any major conurbation, and the results are well worth checking.