Album Review: infina ad nausea – QRTR

The record label Dome of Doom has long been one of the strongest underground labels meeting at the intersection of hip hop and electronic music, releasing fantastic bodies of work by highly regarded names such as Daedelus, Great Dane, and Dabow. What sets them apart from many other labels in this lane, though, is their willingness to release music that deviates from that norm and ability to find top, undiscovered talent in other realms of dance music, and the Brooklyn-based QRTR with her album infina ad nausea—her second on the label—is a prime example of this.

QRTR has long been a consistent and well-respected artist in New York City’s vibrant house music scene, but to the public at large she is perhaps best known for posting a viral video of her cat creating ambient music, which then turned into an EP under the name ambientkitty on Wavcave Records, a collective and label that QRTR co-founded. Ambientkitty didn’t let all of the sudden success go to her head, however, as she returns as a guest on the opening track from infina ad nausea, the tone-setting minimal techno of “The Outer Edge.”

One of the most vital skills for creating an LP in electronic music is being able to reconcile having an album that can weave between different genres throughout while simultaneously being a cohesive body of work, and QRTR shows an exemplary ability to do just that on infina ad nausea. She explores house music on “Running From It,” jersey club on album standout “Fractals,” jungle and breaks on “Ritual” with fellow Wavcave member CSLTY and “Lucid” featuring Sepalcure member Braille, and Hessle Audio-style UK Bass on “Like That.” She manages to incorporate all of these influences into an LP that ends up flowing like how a stellar DJ set would—beginning with the more mellow songs and then gradually getting more upbeat as it goes on.

Even though this is only her second LP, infina ad nausea is a body of work that perfectly encapsulates the growth and maturation of QRTR, and the album’s quality is on par with acclaimed releases from her peers such as Leon Vynehall and Koreless—it’s hands down one of the strongest electronic albums of 2021.

Follow QRTR on Spotify.

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