Resuming his self-titled white-label series, Berlin-based producer Objekt has issued the follow-up to his excellent 2012 single for Hessle Audio, "Cactus" b/w "Porcupine." While that record traded in a heady blend of dubstep wobble and stepping rhythms, the Objekt #3 single changes things up with two far more aggressive, considerably more techno-influenced cuts. This is not say Objekt #3's two tracks are any more straightforward, as both exhibit unique and unpredictable convergences between skittering, syncopated rhythms and raw techno.
A-side "Agnes Demise" is undoubtedly the more aggressive cut. Opening with an agitated, skittish beat, the track is premised on a suspenseful, heavy-hitting beat that bores its way into the listener's head with all the subtlety of a jackhammer. The track's punishing rhythm is complemented in the first half by an ominous, factory-like scree, before the beat drops away in the middle of the track's seven-minute run, revealing a dense cloud of textured noise that was arguably the heart of the tune all along. When the beat returns, it seems to do so with a renewed intensity, sounding at once aggressive and controlled. This sense of dynamics, which is highlighted as the beat continually stalls and jumps throughout the second half of "Agnes Demise," is ultimately what steals the show on this undeniably massive track.
Perhaps the more interesting cut is the incredibly textured b-side, "Fishbone." The track falls more on the cerebral side with its oscillating, sci-fi synths and distorted, spoken-word vocal sample. Before long, skipping beats enter the picture; they're quickly complemented by half-time claps, which inject a more overt dubstep and 2-step inflection into the proceedings. Stuttering and rhythmically off-kilter, the track nonetheless has a crispness that is reminiscent of early Warp techno. Like the a-side, "Fishbone" exhibits a compelling sense of dynamics, featuring a symphonic, string-laden break that is then built back up with deep pads and the return of the track's infectious stepping drums, by which time the rhythmic dynamics of the track have been fundamentally changed. Objekt #3 is the sound of a producer streamlining his sound without losing any of the unpredictable tangents that made his earlier work so compelling.