eMusic Review 0
Flying Lotus's 2008 album Los Angeles is what put him on the map, confirming his role as one of the foremost producers in the city's experimental hip-hop scene — as well as, more broadly speaking, a central figure in an international circle of musicians who look beyond conventional genres. With Cosmogramma, FlyLo (Steven Ellison) takes that map and tears it in two. As astrally inclined as its title suggests, the album suggests a four-dimensional space crisscrossed by intersecting vectors and colliding forces; it makes music out of what sometimes sound like series of small, powdery explosions, or spontaneous knots of greased yarn.
As with the best psychedelic music, it's nearly impossible to tease out the strands of FlyLo's tangled productions. There are snippets of what one assumes are samples of recorded music — voices, jazz drums — and scratchy, digitally abraded drum programming, beats that move in fits and bursts. Ellison also avails himself of an array of collaborators — the saxophonist Ravi Coltrane, bassist Thundercat, harp virtuoso Rebekah Raff and the vocalists Thom Yorke and Laura Darlington, as well as OutKast string arranger Miguel Atwood-Ferguson — but their contributions are swirled together into a gauzy mix that seems to have… read more »