Are You An Axolotl

by Nautilis

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about

Texan musician Skyler McGlothlin is the one behind distinctive abstract electronic under the name of Nautilis. Combining elements of dreamy electronic glitch, digital hip hop culture, dirty electro-funk, and jazz accompaniment, Are You an Axolotl? is a very clever and intriguing debut that manages to breathe a great deal of fresh air into electronic music for everyone. McGlothlin has style and creativity, reminiscing Boards of Canada, Funkstörung and Autechre.

The combination of breaks and weird samples along with sweeping strings and heart tweaking melodies mould together in these rhythmic pieces of compositions. The opening, Mofpex, begins with careful exercises of a crafted blend of treated vocal harmonies and instrumental cutups, before diving hastily into digitally demolished hip hop vocals. Oh How Schmee Loves DSP is an enormously complex piece of layered electronic textures, combined with a hip hop vocal performance from Andy Arsenal. The truly inspired airy flow of Blix2 consists of spacious sub-worthy beats fused with haunted layers of corked voices and splashes of electric shocks. Further along, McGlothin takes his sound to other territories, such as blues on It’s Lonely in the Streets. Stripped keys and fender twinkles with the slightest hiss of record crackle accompany the vocal in this waltz. Following with the jazz theme, Wednesday Afternoon is a cadenced piece of bubbles, Herbert-style. The tune generously ignites with muted horns and sifting acoustic drum sprinkles. McGlothin stumbles back in chilly electronica in Hoax. The track is a thrill ride of breathy beats, beatboxing and miniature machinery. The 15-track dreamy collection of music ends with a two-minute song, Why it Got to Be So Damn Tough, which simplistically combines a guitar riff with a constant loop of hip hop beats, all affected by turntablism of course.

Are You an Axolotl? sounds fresh and surprises me with its beautiful constructive beats and melodies. A changing of channels and then a spacey electronic voice sings, delving into the syncopated moments define the majority of this album. This is a field with positive energy, continuously surprising by its perplexing creativity and its innovative approach to the multitude of genres he tackles—however, not revolutionary or highly exclusive. Then again, McGlothlin offers his rather comprehensive vision. If he continues to deliver in the same rigid way, McGlothlin is definitely a musician worth keeping an eye on.

credits

released April 15, 2002

Planet Mu Records - ZIQ050

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about

Skyler McGlothlin Austin, Texas

Skyler McGlothlin is a Texan electronic music artist that has released music under Nautilis and Malcom Kipe. He also owns and operates Laguna Studio. Skyler McGlothlin does music consulting, licensing, custom compositions, scoring, and sound design.

View reel and listen to bands / albums recorded by Skyler @ www.lagunastudio.com
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