Thursday, December 18, 2008

Spotlight: Flying Lotus

In an ideal world, Steven Ellison (Flying Lotus) would be in as high demand as Timbaland, Swizz Beatz, or Just Blaze. Sadly, that isn't the case. His disorienting, grainy take on hip-hop is miles ahead of what anybody else is doing. Sure, he's inspired numerous contemporaries both domestic (The Gaslamp Killer, Samiyam) and abroad (Rustie, Hudson Mohawke), but Ellison stands above them all. His remixes for Lil' Wayne and Kanye West are complete re-imaginings of the originals, with only the source vocals recognizable (in Wayne's case, even that element was altered). Inebriated rhythms hobble along dark, damp alleyways, while conceptual spaceships from the 1950s fly around overhead. Or something like that.

This is definitely headphone music, so make sure to have a pair handy. I think his Reset EP is a perfect starting place for those interested. If you like that, don't miss his recent Los Angeles; it's a great record.

Kanye West, "Love Lockdown (Flying Lotus Remix)"
Flying Lotus, "Robo Tussin" (remix of Lil' Wayne's "A Milli")

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