canadian graham bertie has been making music in various guises for a long time, but it’s as nautiluss that he has been turning most heads. very much a part of the new wave of turbo artists bringing some inventive techno cred’ back to tiga’s label, his eps have gotten better as we’ve gone along, with the most recent, habitat, his crowning glory to date.
as such we locked him in for an interview to talk about his local scene ever evolving sound, as well as securing a very serious, 2 hour long teshcast which takes in plenty of deep techno, moody bass stuff and more than a few exclusives along the way.
how has your year been? what have been some highlights?
it’s been really good, overall. over the past 12 months, i was able to put out 3 records with two very different labels, both of which i have a lot of respect for. playing panorama bar was a dream come true. mutek festival was everything i hoped it would be and something i’ve long wanted to be a part of having grown up in montreal. new forms festival out in vancouver last fall was great as well. i played igloofest and that was the first time i’ve played in a winter jacket and gloves. hifi club in calgary with justin martin and my “alpha” launch party in may with jacques greene in toronto were really memorable as well.
there seems to be a lot of focus on toronto’s scene right now, does it feel special on the ground? does it feel like something is happening as it were?
you know, it’s kind of weird because i know so many people that make good music here and i get along with all of them and we don’t really sit around and go ‘wow, we are doing something fucking special!’. i think with any major metropolis, you will have a lot of people making art. also we have cold winters so it gives us 6 months of hermiting compared to people that bask in sunlight all year round. if i had heat/sun all year round, i would be perpetually drunk.
if it’s better now than it ever was, how did you first come to electronic music? what were some formative experiences in your youth?
i heard about this rave taking place in my high school arena. i was totally shocked that this kind of underground thing was happening at the time. i wanted to know more about it. around the same time, musique plus (closing thing to mtv in quebec) had this weekly show hosted by this guy named claude rajotte and he used to mine out the best music from whatever genre and so at some point he started talking about electronic pop artists like bjork and massive attack. tiga had a radio show on mcgill radio (ckut) with this other guy named gnat (nathaniel carnegie) that played good electronic stuff as well as mentioned whatever rave was happening that week. also, there were a few record stores downtown like bunker, dna and dutchee’s where you could pick up dj mixes.
photo credit: may truong
do you think you are a product of your city in terms of sound? does living there impact on what you make? would you sound different if you lived somewhere else?
definitely growing up i was influenced by what i was able to find on vinyl and/or hear a dj playing at a club/rave and mixtapes. i think that with the internet era, you don’t really have so much influence from your local scene like you used to. now i get my music from all over the place so i think i would be interested in the same music wherever i happened to be living. that being said, i have quite a few local friends (andrew ross, linus booth, ronnie falcon to name a few) that are virtual encyclopaedias for deeper electronic music, so that helps a lot. i’m sure that if i had grown up in the uk or germany there would be much more influence from those scenes whereas growing up in north america, it’s a mixture of a lot of different scenes.
how do you feel when you look back over your last few releases? the latest one seemed like something had clicked maybe, like you’d found your sound?
i am proud of all 3 records. i would agree that the last one is probably the most cohesive. i made it in the span of a couple of weeks so all the parameters (sound design, engineering, concept) stayed the same whereas alpha was spread over 6 months and the hemlock record featured two songs done in different years.
where and when was the mix recorded?
at home with ableton. no traditional dj setup at home.
are you bothered by the process at all ie vinyl vs cdjs vs traktor or whatever/ do you like the technology aspects of producing and playing?
i embrace technology when it suits my purpose. i learned in the vinyl era and still love playing records in the rare occasion that it’s practical (1% of the time). but there’s something extremely liberating about playing with cdjs and couple of usb keys. i love the freedom. i think that if these tools offer things that were not possible in the vinyl era, then we should consider using them to their full potential.
what else you got coming up/are you looking forward to?
i have a remix for untold coming out on hemlock november 22nd. i have another release in the works but i can’t say with whom yet. i’m working on a new live setup and also collaborating with a bunch of talented people.
listen to or download teshcast y ~ nautiluses below
redshape – departing [delsin]
ambalance – ritzy [cdr]
faltydl – hardcourage [ninja tune]
four tet – lion [text]
nautiluss – elysium [cdr]
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barker & baumecker – schlang bang [osgut ton]
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grown folks – high tide [cdr]
randomer – this train [hemlock]
daphni – pairs [jialong]
daniel avery – taste [phantasy sound]
nautiluss – stygian [turbo]
drexciya – danger bay [clone]
trevino – shank 
basic soul unit – swept up [nonplus]
jimmy edgar – sex drive (jon convex remix) [hotflush]
chaos in the cbd – rolling 84′s [cleckleckboom]
guy andrews – confuted
nautiluss – surfeit [turbo]
j. tjin – schroedinger [cdr]
luke slater – love (maybe forever mix) [novamute]
duke dumont – reclamation of trance [cdr]