Our captain Flying Lotus has been watching a lot of movies.
He came out strong last night and gave the audience a powerful show with a mental echo which lasted for hours.
The Echostage venue was not densely packed, and it should have been. We were handed glasses when we came in.
The set featured material I hadn’t heard before. It started with Until The Quiet Comes to bring the audience into alignment. The he got down mixing and..perhaps quickly writing out…? some percussion parts on samples he had already cut.
My favorite part of the show came when he started getting down on the soundtrack samples. I was dressed as Agent Cooper at the show, so the Twin Peaks motifs by Angelo Badalamenti pinged my heart deeply. Then he did a masterful cut up of the Ghost In The Shell title track. Lastly, buried behind the bass was a cut from La Planète Sauvage… the very same cut Quasimoto used for “Come On Feet.” I also heard samples from the oldie-but-goodie Bob James’ “Nautilus.”
The visual experience was paced and choreographing between the sound and sight was intentional and entertaining, but has no trajectory, no telos, no uniting thread other than the medium. It also made me think back to my Winamp days and how many hours I spent listening to electronic music with milkdrop loaded up.
This is where Flying Lotus could deliver more, or learn and improve upon for his next tour: he should make it more liturgical. There are several ways a liturgical reorientation would magnify his art.
1.) Give us a narrative. You make movies now. You not the value of connecting A to Z. Let there be a clear beginning and end, two parts, rise and fall, a matrix of motifs. There are several reasons all musical greats take the challenge of writing music set to a Mass. One of the reasons is that the Mass has a good narrative arc.
2.) Go ad orientem. Face the same direction as us. You should see this 3d stuff. You’re handsome but not that handsome, your lava desk is not endearing. I’d much rather watch you work, put cameras over head to project what you are doing.
3.) Give us God. Kuso was gory. Do the opposite now. Go full-out mystical transcendent.
4.) Talk to Tim Hecker. I asked him to do a Mass too. I will take you all over the earthquake-ruined hills of Italy, you can walk among the ruins and work on a Mass setting while living with some monks. I’ll set it up.
You were cool, Flying Lotus. If you read this, reach out so we can have you over for dinner.