By: Nicholas Hautman Special to The Chronicle
Experimental producer Steven Ellison, most commonly known by his stage name of Flying Lotus, has proven himself to be more than just John Coltrane’s great nephew with his fourth album, “Until the Quiet Comes”. The Los Angeles artist’s latest album is packed with calming sounds, intoxicating melodies and thrilling synths. All 18 of the songs flow beautifully together in a continuous mix of various instruments and samples. Vocal features include Grammy Award-winner Erykah Badu and the lead vocalist of Radiohead, Thom Yorke.
The album kicks off with a short but extravagant introduction entitled “All In,” which features an assortment of sounds created by harps, bells, and basses. The track then fades into “Getting There,” a mystical, intergalactic song that features stunning vocals by Niki Randa. “Until the Colours Come” sounds as though someone is playing a 1997 PlayStation game underwater. The track successfully encapsulates FlyLo’s technologically inspired genre for first-time listeners.
The tone of the album momentarily switches with “Sultan’s Request.” This dark song fuses a hip-hop bass with electronic harmonies. “Putty Boy Strut” combines a thumping backtrack, which almost sounds like it belongs on a Rihanna song, with a medley of dynamic noises that are sure to be engraved into the listener’s mind for hours after the first listen. “See Thru to U,” featuring Erykah Badu, is a hallucinogenic tribal anthem that perfectly demonstrates how experimental Flying Lotus is with his productions.
“The Nightcaller” is clearly a standout track on “Until the Quiet Comes”. It has an upbeat electronic melody until shortly after the two-minute mark where the tempo drops. It’s unlike anything you’ve ever heard before, I can promise you that. “Electric Candyman” (featuring Thom Yorke) is very melancholic and, at certain points, sounds as though it’s being played in reverse. The album fades out with “Dream to Me,” a short but perfect outro for a FlyLo album.
“Until the Quiet Comes” will be released both in stores and digitally on Tuesday, Oct. 2. If you like Flying Lotus, be sure to check out his concert at Terminal 5 in New York City on Sunday, Oct. 7.