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flying lotus - Cosmogramma
Now back in print. Flying Lotus' provides one of the years most anticipated album outings on the marvelous 'Cosmogramma' for Warp. Since the release of 'LA' this man has single handedly transformed the face of instrumental hiphop, providing producers everywhere with the inspiration and confidence to explore different tempos, their own spirituality and the very shape of their music. It's for no silly reason that half of all quality new hiphop we hear these days are compared to the man, his influence is just that profound. Like Zomby with dubstep/UKstyle, he's plotted his own coordinates through the American beatscape, in turn taking notes from his Aunt and uncle's approach, while sucking up D'n'B, Garage and other Afro-futurist forms like some next level riddim stimulant. Essentially he sees it all as roots and branches of the same tree, which is a magical thing in a world of micro-subdivisions and netted musical borders. 'Cosmogramma' is a proper trip, taking us inside the outside to view his beats from every angle imaginable, using deeply inscribed jazz knowledge to give the set a lush fluidity and utilising the skills of harp prodigy Rebekah Raff, relative Ravi Coltrane, bass virtuoso Thundercat (Sa-ra etc) and string arrangements from Miguel Atwood-Ferguson plus a heartbreaking croon from Thom Yorke to realise his dizzying vision. We're not going to pick this apart track by track, you've gotta see and hear this album as a whole entity, once the airlocks are shut you're not getting out until the other end and it's all about the journey in between.