Category Archives: Albums of the Year

Best Albums of 2014: #18 Isaiah Rashad – Cilvia Demo

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It was a down year for hip-hop. Heavyweights like Kanye West, Drake and Pusha T dropped their most-recent efforts in 2013 and following up in 2014 would be understandably too soon, especially considering how much play those albums are still getting. Enter TDE Records, from Los Angeles, CA. The label that discovered and built a small empire around Kendrick Lamar’s good kid M.A.A.D. city, boasts only 6 artists (7 if you count supergroup Black Hippy). TDE had quite the year, dropping LP’s from stalwarts Schoolboy Q, Ab-Soul and new signee, female singer SZA. But their best release of the year, came from their other new signee, 23 year old Tennessee native Isaiah Rashad; in the form of the introspective, wonderfully produced and polished Cilvia Demo. 

My equation for hip-hop to hit is simple. Without using big words and shit, it needs to sound nice, have substantive lyrics and something that I can feel. I’m not really into MC’s who wanna act hard, or brag about how much money they have. Fuck that. Been there, done that, over it. Herein lies my affinity for Cilvia Demo. It doesn’t boast a big single, like Q’s Oxymoron does with “Collard Greens” and it doesn’t have the big name features that Ab-Soul’s These Days has with Rick Ross, Lupe Fiasco and Action Bronson. But it marries Rashad’s emotive rhymes with ambitious hip-hop production that comes across like a classic sound.

Rashad uses unconventional lyrical paths to get his points across. On “Tranquility,” he waxes on the fucked up state of the world with these quasi-controversial bars:

Well, thank God for the shooter,
And thank God for the leader,
And think hard for a message
Blink art on pedestrians, what are you, a believer?

It’s a take on how both good and evil play a part in our perception of the world. How we establish our value judgements once we look at the whole scope of all parties involved. He cites Caesar and Brutus and Jesus to illustrate his point. All the while, production by Farhot strews lush keys along with an ominous bass hit.

Farhot and those buttery keys also guide the way on “Soliloquy,” which is exactly that. A 2-minute aside from Rashad with no chorus. On it, Rashad shows his serious side (“I left my daddy round ’97, he was lazy”), his playfulness (“I been on the Jäger for a day-ger watch me slow dance”) and even a witty sports reference (“And I’m finessing like I’m Timmy Duncan, win you something.”) He totally nails it and settles into Farhot’s groove.

The album’s crowning moment comes on “Heavenly Father,” where Rashad questions the role of God in his life, namely pondering whether the life he’s led is part of the greater plan that’s been set for him. It’s another fine production on Cilvia Demo, this time from D. Sanders, who infuses a pipe organ sound reminiscent of a ballpark and a stand-up bass that makes me hope to see Isaiah Rashad perform a song like this at a jazz club someday. I feel it even more on the  beautiful music video for the song directed by Eric Swiz.

This was a humble-yet-next-level effort from the even-keeled Isaiah Rashad and one of my favorite hip-hop albums of the year. One love.

Best Albums of 2014: #19 Cymbals Eat Guitars – LOSE

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This is about as punk rock as I get these days. Cymbals Eat Guitars falls somewhere between post-punk and something resembling emo. A friend of mine calls it “populist punk,” as in punk for the people and that couldn’t really sum up this band and this record any better. They’re fierce, yet melodic, conjuring up nostalgia for a band like At The Drive-In. There’s an alterna-rock vibe to it that makes a sound this heavy more accessible than you’d expect…

LOSE might as well describe what I do when I blast this record: Get lost…in Joseph D’Agostino’s nasty guitars and versatile vocals, or in Mat Miller’s power-drumming. The record opens with a track called “Jackson,” that puts the biggest fucking smile on my face. It’s balanced song-writing that sees chamber vocals layered over a gentle guitar strum and it builds into an explosion of energy. As the song goes on, D’Agostino’s voice seemingly gets gravelly and it pumps emotion into your ears. On “Laramie,” D’Agostino sings about his memories of a fallen friend and drops lyrical gems like “All alone with my strip mall memories/Chasing the chills I felt when I was eighteen.” It’s suburban poetry that manifests itself on an 8-minute track with three movements….like an opera made of concrete, that runs on 87 octane gasoline inside of a 92 red civic hatchback. The opera’s final act is a jam session into space, where the distortion hovers above everything.

These jam session segments are laden throughout LOSE and no moment is as memorable as on “Place Name,” where the Staten Island rockers just go OFF. It’s one of those showboat moments of rustic musical mastery like on Cloud Nothings’ “Wasted Days.” Pure shred and pounding on the drums with high pitched “oohs” and more distortion variations than I can keep up with, all culminating with a gaze-y guitar riff. This is kick-ass rock and roll and it’s highly advisable to take your speakers to eleven when you put it on.

Best Albums of 2014 – #20 Bombay Bicycle Club – So Long, See You Tomorrow

 

Bombay Bicycle Club sure know how to start an album off. On their 2009 debut LP (I Had The Blue But I Shook Them Loose), opening track “Emergency Contraception Blues” started with a lovely guitar that sputtered into a burst of energy that set the stage for their now long-standing career as power rockers. On 2011’s A Different Kind of Fix, they open with the beautifully organic atmosphere of “How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep.” It grabbed you for the whole album and gave rise to the feeling that you were floating in bliss. But on 2014’s So Long, See You Tomorrow, they might’ve trumped all of the previous opening moments with the divine “Overdone,” one of the best songs of the year.

So Long See You Tomorrow sees Bombay Bicycle Club incorporate samples and electronic elements more-so than ever. The high pitched whirring effect you hear instantly on “Overdone,” is something that gets explored in other variations on So Long. The track also sees the inclusion of a female vocal from Lucy Rose Parton who appears throughout the record and apeared with the band on the entire tour. So you could say that this is a re-invention of sorts for the band. Or you can looks at it as I do, as an experimentation…something frontman Jack Steadman has led before. Like on 2010 LP Flaws, that saw the band scaling back their excitable approach into something more subdued…like a full-band playing a singer-songwriter’s library. Whether that worked or not is debateable.

But where Flaws might have missed the mark, So Long See You Tomorrow is a highly successful experiment. It peaked at #1 on the UK charts and marked a turning point for the band, to where they’re beginning to cement themselves as a major English pop rock act, following in the foot-steps of bands like Arctic Monkeys and Kaiser Chiefs. This effort from Bombay Bikes is what a good pop rock release should sound like: A coherent confluence of traditional instruments with tasteful digital qualities. And rather than sapping a good band of good songwriting (like a lot of big time releases often do), this record has a distinct creative substance that makes it catchy, yet still cool enough to feel like Steadman and company aren’t holding anything back musically. Enjoy.

The Best Albums of 2014 – First Batch (31-21)

If there’s a staple to what Everything Ecstatic has done over the years, it’s undoubtedly the Best of the Year Albums List (since 2006!). For the last two years, it’s evolved into a daily featured album for 3 weeks, with the “Best of The Rest” post kicking it off. So here we are, with numbers 31 thru 21.

There are albums that didn’t make it on the final chopping block and there are hundreds of other ones that never even made the initial long list. But I can assure you, these are the 31 best records that marked the year in music across all genres. It’s scientifically proven (sorta.) There’ll be a spotify playlist of each album below the entry and after this post, all posts will focus squarely on ONE album per day until we arrive at the #1 Album of 2014.

Follow @EcstaticBlog on Twitter  and like the Facebook page as well for updates on when each new album is announced. Enough babble here’s the list:

31. Beck – Morning Phase

Man…Beck? Still got it. Morning Phase seemingly picks up where Sea Change left off. In fact, Beck himself calls it “a companion piece of sorts.” I turned to this record and it’s guitar-driven ballads and melancholy on slow moving afternoons.

30. Bear In Heaven – Time Is Over One Day Old

Bear in Heaven is a prolific rock band from Brooklyn that infuses tribal drums and electronics into their sound. This is their 4th LP and it’s the kind of album that wins you over twice. It finishes as strongly as it comes in and there’s more than a handful of memorable tracks on this one. Everything comes together on tracks like “Demon” and “If I Were To Lie”, led by singer Jon Philpot’s wonderful voice.

29. Souls Of Mischief – There Is Only Now

Oakland represent! 20 years after the release of the iconic 93 ’til Infinity, the East Bay kings of hip-hop put out their 6th studio album. There Is Only Now succeeds largely on the effort of producer Adrian Younge, who is flat out one of the best producers in the game. Part of me just wants to talk about how much I love Younge’s instrumentals of this record…Seriously, dude is like J-Dilla good and drops classic soul samples throughout. But A-Plus, Tajai, Opio and Phesto step to the mic with conscious rhymes, tackling relevant themes like police brutality and the justice system with multiple appearances from Busta Rhymes and Snoop Dogg. This is a money hip-hop release and on the real, def bump the deluxe version of the record with 2nd disc of instrumentals (linked below.)

28. Allah-Las – Worship The Sun

Continue reading The Best Albums of 2014 – First Batch (31-21)

The Top 5 Music Videos of 2014

Ok…Did the two day wait effectively build enough anticipation for the Top 5?! If you missed numbers 6-10, you can see them here. One last word on why music videos are relevant and such an important part of an artist’s output: It allows for an additional opportunity to affect another one of your senses; the visual side as well as what you hear in a song. A music video allows us to relate and attach to the music even more. It’s like how I feel like I’m spinning every time I hear Hot Chip’s “Flutes” because of that video. As MTV shifted away from a music video platform to one that favors bubblegum programming instead, the internet has become the landing spot for artists’s videos and it’s totally worked. No commercials, no more “VJ’s” (I still love you Kennedy and Bill Bellamy), just the video. I encourage you to experience an artist’s music in this medium and allow yourself to connect even more with the music.

Ok, enough babble, here’s the Top 5 Music Videos of 2014:

5. SBTRKT ft. Ezra Koenig- “New Dorp, New York”

The thing that gets me with this video is how ties together the visual theme of one of my favorite albums of the year. We didn’t know much about this mammal on the cover of SBTRKT’s Wonder Where We Land, but this animated music video tells the story of it and other predatory creatures of the night. The shadows are dark & spooky and there’s sweet subtle details like a SBTRKT bobblehead on the dashboard of a car as the mammal runs through the night, Later the mammal approaches the camera for us to see how similarly his face resembles the mask. In the end, he makes his way through the dark cesspool (looks like Bushwick), that’s just one of the worlds created on the brilliant album, only to perch above the clouds with a birds eye view of it all.

4. Cathedrals – “Unbound”

Fuck, I love this video. Had an opportunity to meet and write about Cathedrals off a chance encounter soon after moving back to SF and this video was one of my first interactions with their music. Suffice it to say, I couldn’t get it out of my head. It’s an artistic achievement to say the least and getting to know all of the nuances that went into the production and the roles of it’s many collaborators opened it up for me.  It’s a passionate display of visual arts, dance and raw emotions, marvelously produced and set to music from an up and coming band that belongs on your radar. One love to Cathedrals.

Continue reading The Top 5 Music Videos of 2014

The Top 10 Music Videos of 2014 – Pt 1

You are now in tune to Everything Ecstatic’s annual “Best of The Year” project. The 8th year highlighting albums of the year and this is the inaugural EE Best Music Videos of the Year list. These videos are a combination of artistic production, artists that hit, engagement and cool concepts. Breaking this up into two editions and this post begins the countdown starting at number 10 through number 6. Enjoy!

10. King Tuff – “Black Moon Spell” 

The black and white component here really reminded me of one of my favorite videos from 2012, Cloud Nothings’ “Fall In,” with the Busby Berkeley theme. The “Black Moon Spell” vid sees Tuff spinning around on a Marshall stack, with the wind blowing his long hair behind his cap. The spinning motion seemingly moves with the epic guitar riff that plays throughout the song. It’s like a scene out of a fucked up road side biker bar. Love it:

9. FKA Twigs – “Two Weeks”

Everything about FKA Twigs is visually stunning. The “Two Weeks” vid feels like that old Michael Jackson video for “Remember The Time” with Magic Johnson, Eddie Murphy and Iman. It’s the kind of extravagance that we’ve come to expect from Twigs as she’s dressed like an Egyptian queen with dancers flanking her from all sides. The beautiful irony here, is that she herself was a prominent video girl before her solo stardom.

8. Sinkane – “How We Be”

A video about dance, in all it’s many global forms. Hip-hop, krump, African, pop-lock, break and ballet with Sinkane’s Ahmed Gallab, looking cool as fuck walkin’ through different parts of NYC. It’s a dope anthology of dance, much like Sinkane’s new record, Mean Love is an anthology of his many global musical influences.

7. Vic Mensa – “Down On My Luck”

Ok…let’s get one thing out there: I fucking LOVE Vic Mensa. Dude is part of the bright future of hip-hop and he works his ass off. He’s tireless, straight up…All day, all night, he’s working on his music. Now “Down On My Luck” is a bit of a depart from Vic’s usual style. It’s a club banger and that’s new ground for him, but the video is solid gold. It reminds me of Kylie Minogue’s classic “Come Into My World” video directed by Michel Gondry, where Kylie goes around town 4 times over and the video just builds visually and conceptually, much like Vic re-creates his potentially disastrous night on the town over and over until it comes out roses. It’s an incredibly clever video and shouts to Vic for experimenting with new styles and creative shit.

6. Ibeyi – “River”

I stumbled onto these French/Cuban twins randomly on a late night and I’ve been enamored ever since. They sing beautifully in their unique tribal style, taking turns holding their breath under water as they harmonize in and out of the track. The detail of the air bubbles when one of them is submerged and then quickly rises above water to sing the verse is mesmerizing. As far as debut singles and videos go, this one is as good as any and no surprise, they’re signed to XL Recordings, who’ve been masters of artistically marketing their artists with a perfect balance of releases.

Check in later this week for the Top 5! 

Databasing: The Best Albums of 2013

My Albums of the Year Project has been happening for 8 years now. Last year, i did the list on Genius.com, where i was running the rock & roll operation. This post is merely a database of the list on Everything Ecstatic for historical purposes. Essentially, i want the list to live on this blog as new lists come out at the end of every year. Each write-up is hyperlinked on the titles, so click on any of the titles to be taken to the individual posts. One love.

#1 Daft Punk – Random Access Memories

#2 Disclosure – Settle

#3 San Fermin – San Fermin

#4 Arctic Monkeys – AM

#5 Queens of the Stone Age – Like Clockwork…

#6 Glasser – Interiors

#7 The National – Trouble Will Find Me

#8 CHVRCHES – The Bones of What You Believe

#9 Kanye West – Yeezus

#10 Local Natives – Hummingbird

#11 Rhye – Woman

#12 Alunageorge – Body Music

#13 Haim – Days Are Gone

#14 Chance The Rapper’s Acid Rap and Vic Mensa’s Innanetape

#15 Baths – Obsidian

#16 Austra – Olympia

#17 Foxygen – We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace and Magic

#18 Blood Orange – Cupid Deluxe

#19 Flume – Flume

#20 Toro y Moi – Anything in Return

#21 London Grammar – If You Wait

#22 Shigeto – No Better Time Than Now

#23 James Blake – Overgrown

#24 Ryan Hemsworth – Guilt Trips

#25 King Krule – 6 Feet Beneath The Moon

#26 The Men – New Moon

#27 Run The Jewels – Run The Jewels

#28 DJ Koze – Amygdala

#29 Lucius – Wildewoman

#30 Elvis Costello & The Roots – Wise Up Ghost

And of course, the playlist:

Lastly, here’s a database of all previous lists:

 

Top 18 Albums of 2012: #1 Frank Ocean – channel ORANGE

This is the pimpest shit i’ve heard since Voodoo changed the way everyone made love 10 years ago. This is an elegant hip-hop/R&B crossover album, without the flamboyance we’ve come to expect from some singers. Frank Ocean is a smooth and classy dude and channel ORANGE is Exhibit A.

How do we value expressions of love? What about loss? What about the accompanying nostalgia? From where i rank this album, you can surmise my valuation of the previous questions. A lot of music is about amorous expressions and the mastery of capturing these emotions…To be able to do so as vividly as Frank Ocean is sublime. This is an album for everyone’s love…Doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what you stand for. He speaks to the love, loss and games that every one of us knows all too well.

The album’s opening track and single is, ‘Thinkin Bout You’:

Tell me that shit doesn’t make you tingle? Tell me it doesn’t make you wanna think about whoever is on YOUR mind right now? Human beings are passionate lovers by their very nature and Ocean knows how to appeal to our carnal desires.

He shows off his whimsy in ‘Super Rich Kids’ w/ Earl Sweatshirt. Waxing about the ritzy-titzy well-to-dos and their careless extravagant ways:

Super rich kids with nothing but loose ends
Super rich kids with nothing but fake friends

and dropping triple entendres like it’s nothing:

The market’s down like 60 stories
And some don’t end the way they should

My silver spoon has fed me good
A million one, a million cash
Close my eyes and feel the crash

While it’s important to note Ocean’s versatility of being more than just another R&B artist, i ultimately digress. Where channel ORANGE makes it’s lasting mark, is on the back to back to back tracks, Crack Rock’ to ‘Pyramids’ to ‘Lost.’ One of the best three song streaks i’ve ever heard on an album.

‘Crack Rock’  starts off with a beat that creeps and makes you move the second it drops:

Ocean’s beautiful voice straddling the line between baritone and tenor guides us through a desolate tale of addiction and the subliminal question of what the “fix” is.

The album climaxes on ‘Pyramids’ where Ocean starts by giving us a history lesson of Egyptian proportions. Painting the picture of his “Cleopatra” who is the subject of this song:

Much like the Queen, Ocean’s Cleopatra is tragic and her beauty is corrupt.

“What good is a jewel that ain’t still precious?”

She’s taken a turn and fallen into the trap of the pyramids…and Ocean takes us through the mystique of these pyramids, personifying them as the palace of sin and she is trapped inside. Lyrically, this dude is amazing. He confidently articulates his disdain for this beautiful woman and what she’s become, a stripper….But she still gets to him and still rattles his cage…And he’s helpless against the sexual siren…

Finally, ‘Lost’ completes the trifecta and Ocean sings about how fleeting love is within the movement of the lives of its moving parts, people. Truly my favorite song on this record and this absolutely stunning video of ‘Lost’ played over a montage of Wes Anderson’s The Darjeeling Limited will blow your mind:

“Got on my buttercream… silk shirt and it’s Versace”

For real? That’s the moneyest line i’ve ever heard. Makes me wanna go buy designer clothes, just to feel the high-end slik.

As if he couldn’t be money enough, he employs Outkast’s Andre 3000 for ‘Pink Matter,’ and i love Big Boi too, but damnit if Andre isn’t the pimpest dude in that duo. John Mayer makes appearances as a guitarist (say what you will about his singing, dude destroys the guitar.) There are so many other epic moments on this album that i’ve glossed over too. It’s a complete work that you gotta hear.

Ocean’s conceptual everyman audience hit a peak the day before channel ORANGE came out…when he made a stunning announcement in an open letter on his tumblr page (beautifully captured in this piece by the SF Bay Guardian’s Daniel Alvarez). It was the biggest leap of faith one could take in hip-hop/R&B… genres shrouded in misogyny and alpha-males. It crumbled a wall, called out the fabric of humanity and what we’re willing to accept.

This is an album that is highly respectful to modern themes and issues. He doesn’t neglect taboos and presents himself to be a real human being. Gay, straight, black, white, whatever….we all find ourselves and our instincts in the moments of carnal passions and impulses inspired by and within this album. This is the album that one day, many of our children will be conceived to…

Groundbreaking, provocative, powerful, daring, passionate, compassionate and a part of us. This makes up my #1 Album of 2012. An album that hopefully allows people to embrace who we are, who we want to be, who we want to be with, express ourselves and act on our most basic instincts. One love.

#1 Frank Ocean – channel ORANGE

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Top 18 Albums of 2012: #2 Hot Chip – In Our Heads

In Our Heads represents the moment when everything i want in music comes together in one package. The sublime confluence of rock and electronica. The English techno sound done right. Keyboard mastery and an epic beat. The nerdy singer who rocks like he belongs in a different body and is just plain cool as hell. The sound that pays homage to the 80’s, 90’s and beyond. It’s a band demonstrating that they haven’t fallen off on their 5th studio album. This was the sound i expected from Hot Chip on this go around and they delivered in a major way.

I remember when i first heard this album, i was sitting at my kitchen table and the sheer epicness of In Our Heads’ opening track, ‘Motion Sickness’ was fucking gripping:

What a way to start an album… What a way to come back from your first release in two years. I was hooked. I still am. This is the band that changed the dance rock game with the unforgettable ‘Over and Over’ …flipped it upside down and made it really fucking clear that this shit doesn’t need to be pop. They haven’t dropped off A SINGLE BIT.

There’s a certain pattern to a Hot Chip album that i’ve come to love and they executed it to a tee on In Our Heads. The slow jams you can’t quite shake, like ‘Look At Where We Are’, with the trippy re-verb droplet sound in the background….it’s the song that breaks you down early on the record and takes you away from their infectious dance beats..makes you wanna bring that someone closer…before resuming regularly scheduled dancing; With a classic upbeat love song in ‘These Chains,’ that borrows dubstep, old drum and bass beats and the signature Casio keys subtly placed in the background.

While Hot Chip warms you up with ‘These Chains,’ you’re violently eased (how that’s possible, i don’t know, but they pull it off) into the albums signature dance floor track, ‘Night and Day’:

LOVE the Reggie Watts cameo singing the very 80’s deep robot-o-tronic voice:

Let’s sweat, let’s sweat
Let’s sweat, let’s sweat
Let’s sweat, let’s sweat
Let’s sweat, let’s sweat
(You know I’m thinking about you) — Watts
Night & day & night
(You got me working) — Watts
Night & day & night
(You got me working) — Watts
Night & day & night
(You got me working) — Watts
Night & day & night

But the most spectacular moment on In Our Heads is ‘Flutes’. The most perfectly repetitive track i’ve ever heard. You gotta know your shit to pull this off. It’s flawlessly progressive as Alexis Taylor’s sultry voice guides us through the beat into the impeccable grand finale…..“One day you might realize…………That you will need to open your eyes!”:

After seeing the video, i always feel like the room is spinning around me when i hear this song…and i love that feeling. Of getting lost in a song and just surrendering to the beat for a moment.

Can you tell that i LOVE this band? Full disclosure, i’m a huge fucking fan. (Almost as big of a fan as this girl is.) Largely because they never disappoint me. In fact, they’ve been not disappointing me since The Warning changed the game in 2006. They’re one of the best damn bands on the planet, bar none…and they just put out my 2nd favorite album of 2012.

Hot Chip

Top 18 Albums of 2012: #3 Flying Lotus – Until The Quiet Comes

I’ve found that i didn’t need the immersion into Until The Quiet Comes that i go through on the day of writing about an album to know everything that makes it incredible; namely its auteur, LA’s Steven Ellison (more commonly known by his stage name, Flying Lotus.) FlyLo’s music has grown with me and i’ve grown with his music. FlyLo is a contemporary, in every sense of the word and his music straddles the line between music and contemporary art. His finger is on the pulse of all that is modern, trending and seemingly great in music. But he has a way of crafting it to become his own, never towing a line and always remaining unique.

You have to witness the art form that is Flying Lotus’s music. You have to hear it, you have to see it and you have to get a taste for the method to his madness. Once you see this all, you’ll understand how tirelessly FlyLo works to craft his art and create an experience that is unlike any other and a manifestation of his vision.

The first taste we got of Until The Quiet Comes was this short film (think of it as a 3 minute music video) by Kahlil Joseph for the album’s title track and its nothing short of a cinematographic masterpiece:

FlyLo is a master collaborator. He’s one of the few people to work with Thom Yorke, as he did on ‘And the Whole World Laughs With You…’ off of 2010’s Cosmogramma (My #12 Album of 2010). This time around, he features the gorgeous Erykah Badu on ‘See Thru to U’.

He worked with with Director David Lewandowski and actor Elijah Wood for this stunning video for ‘Tiny Tortures’:

The intricate bass loops and Wood’s mystifying expressions are impeccable. And the artist works…he continues to work. This video for ‘Putty Boy Strut’ directed by Cyriak Harris, is a robot’s story:

He’s careful to craft everything precisely the way he envisions it. To work with the right people to visually capture the feel of his sound. This guy is the fucking future. He takes visual and sonic elements that are prevalent, but put his own spin on them. Everything he does is unique and seemingly groundbreaking, but it’s like he’s not even trying. With his ear to ear grin plastered on his face, he keeps cranking out spin-off projects that complement his albums. Wanna know what he does for his live show? Surprise, it’s freaking original as hell too…He’s created an audiovisual arts concept (alongside visual artists Timeboy and Strangeloop) called ‘Layer 3,’ where he’s playing inside of a visual vortex, but you have to see it to believe it. Here’s a doc produced by the Red Bull Music Academy, where he talks about how he likes to “dabble in things that feel magical”:

My friend Dallas always says “Visualize: Manifest.” This is the embodiment of everything Flying Lotus does. Everything is possible for Steven Ellison. Somehow he even had time this year to virally launch a villainous alter-ego named Captain Murphy, in the spirit of notorious hip-hop villains like Quasimoto and Madvillain. He kept his true identity a mystery while garnering over 20,000 Twitter followers, before dropping the Duality EP (stream it or download it for free here) and revealing himself in front of an LA crowd at his first show in late November…

Flying Lotus blows my mind. His ideas have no limitations. He’s a highly creative person and somehow manages to articulate everything that’s on his mind through his music and art. This is the future of music. He’s had his finger on the button for years and it just keeps getting better and better. If the future of not only hip-hop and electronica, but of all music and art is in the hands of Flying Lotus, it’s a world that I want to live in.

#3 Flying Lotus – Until The Quiet Come

FlyLo

Note: Until The Quiet Comes is not on Spotify. I’ve communicated with FlyLo regarding when it’ll be up, and he said “soon bro.” While you wait, feel free to entertain yourselves with the above videos and tracks or check out his website for more cool shit: http://flying-lotus.com