sonar (danck tour journal pt 3)

July 6th, 2010

Barcelona’s annual Sonar Festival attracts the cuttingest-edge and the best-selling in modern electronic music from around the world. Invading the city’s contemporary art complex, CCCB/MACBA during the afternoon and a sprawling convention centre-type complex after dark, it’s impossible to see everything on the daunting line-up, especially while making the most of the Catalan culture (mainly siestas and tapas) at the same time. But having come from the opposite side of the world, I was damn well going to do my best. (more…)

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Flying Lotus – Cosmogramma

May 29th, 2010

Los Angeles-based Steven Ellison (aka Flying Lotus) has finally lifted the lid on what has been the most anticipated electronic album of the year. His subtle yet wild productions have always been filtered through the psychedelic heritage of the West Coast and the legacy of J Dilla’s unquantized beat-making, but here he has finally crashed through into a world all of his own. Cosmogramma is the fulfillment of Ellison’s unique musical vision, which in turn consolidates his already unmistakable aesthetic while pushing the boundaries of his kaleidoscopic sonic palette even further.

It is no longer adequate to describe FlyLo beats as post-Dilla or wonky. The amazing tones on the album owe as much to the likes of Madlib as they do Four Tet, Aphex Twin, Kode9, Motown, Pink Floyd, Miles Davis or Ornette Coleman. Jazz in particular hangs thickly over the album, and while Ellison often plays down his family lineage (his aunt was the great Alice Coltrane, wife of legendary saxophonist John) the composition and experimentation feels like a futuristic take on the spirit of 1960’s free jazz. Cosmogramma sounds completely familiar and alien all at once. For every squeak, bleep, squelch or manipulated sample there is an overriding sense of analogue warmth and melodic soulfulness whose juxtaposition doesn’t quite make sense at first. Like free jazz, it’s a challenging listen and the individual compositions on Cosmogramma make most sense in the context of the overall album.

As such, it’s difficult to pick obvious highlights. ‘…And The World Laughs With You’ features the vocals of Radiohead’s Thom Yorke which are tweaked in such a way to provide just another layer to the track as opposed to the feature of it. Live instrumentation and string arrangements are used heavily on the record including relative Ravi Coltrane who lends sax to ‘Arkestry’ and Dorian Concept who plays keys on ‘Satelllliiiiiiiteee’.

Also worthy of mention is the gorgeous sleeve artwork, incorporating the theme of old-meets-new with hieroglyphic-like symbols and sketches of planets. As a package, Cosmogramma looks and feels timeless – a work that will be enjoyed for generations to come. Only time will tell, but on repeated listening one can’t shake the feeling that this is a very important album.


Published in the May 19, 2010 issue of Time Off

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blu x flylo

April 15th, 2009

LA rapper Blu spits fast and loose over Flying Lotus’s GNGBNG. Check it out via Blu’s MySpace.

What’s DM got coming up this year? Some pretty special biz. Stay tuned.

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flying lotus pics, 020109

January 5th, 2009

What better way to kick off a new year than with a rammed out night of mind bending beats courtesy of the one Flying Lotus? As usual, our good friend Megan comes through with the quality photojournalism capturing the vibe of the dance.

Walrii scrapes out the jungle rust.

Crowd uncontrolled.

DJ Katch – no sucker DJ.

True original – Flying Lotus

Click on any of the pics to check out the full set at Megan’s blog – super hot speaker top boogie ahoy.

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flying lotus interview

December 23rd, 2008

In the lead up to next week’s show, Flying Lotus is interviewed in today’s Rave magazine. He talks about being signed to Warp, his live show, and the pressure of external expectations on the creation of his new material:

“It’s bad to admit but there was a lot more pressure this time, worrying what other people would think. I just did my thing but it took a bit longer because of that outside influence.”

Tickets are still on sale for next Friday’s show at the Moon Bar – click here to cop them, or get into Rockinghorse or Butter Beats.

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dank morass & junglettes present flying lotus (la, warp)

December 1st, 2008

The Morass, in association with Junglettes, is ecstatic to be bringing the one and only Flying Lotus back to Brisbane. FlyLo’s Thursday night set at the Step Inn in February is the stuff of local legend for the 150+ heads who were there. By all accounts, the man has elevated his ridiculous live show to even loftier heights in the intervening time and he’ll be ready to destroy the Moon Bar on Friday 2nd January.

With support from Resin Dogs deck-technician DJ Katch, Junglettes De La Haye and Gidgette and the Morass, this is going to be one hell of a way to kick off your 2009.

Tickets are available now from the OzTix website, Rockinghorse, Butter Beats and all other OzTix outlets for $15.

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