By Adam Burns
‘Terminus’ in Latin translates to boundary stone or the end of the road. While this album celebrates the past, it most importantly alludes to a new beginning for NZ drum’n’bass producer Ollie Cern. It’s tough sometimes to take an album seeped in tragedy out of context and viewed objectively. Cern, aka Omen, has valiantly carried on the Cern moniker after the tragic loss of Johnny Cern in 2008. Evidently ‘Terminus’ was the ideal outlet for the production whiz. This is all about the production with meticulous sonic detail which extorts an array of abstract sounds and hard-hitting drum breaks which rattle the pads. Altering moods through techstep, mid-’90s Metalheadz’ updates and more ambient routes, there is a certain darkness that the listener has to tread through. Yet this dark aesthetic drops its guard at times to let daylight creep in. Double Down which borrows heavily from Photek is a smoother collection of breaks but its ease manifests from its contrast to grimier numbers like Wasabi and Love Of Fear where you’re battered around the dnb cauldron. It’s experimental, dynamic and hard hitting with more than a hint of nostalgia.