Steve Ellison, aka Flying Lotus, has played a pivotal role in the emerging beats scene. His 2008 Los Angeles album put him at the forefront of innovative electronic music while his 2010 sophomore release Cosmogramma stunned listeners with its dense mix of cluttered downtempo and psychedelic jazz-infused goodness. Meanwhile, FlyLo’s live performances were (and still are) a bombastic mix of heavy bass music and trip hop. It seems only natural for a beatsmith of Ellison’s caliber to evolve his style once again on Until The Quiet Comes, this time towards smoother terrain, giving each detail-packed tune its own space to breathe. And breathe it does; the album plays like a session of guided meditation, with FlyLo leading you to a surreal out-of-body-experience.
The album starts off with All In, a gentle and jazzy track to get you warmed up for what’s to come. Next up is Getting There featuring the angelic voice of Niki Randa, which you may remember from the UTQC promo video. After a beatless interlude (Until The Colours Come), Ellison takes you deeper into the rabbit-hole with Heave(N); you might feel your skin crawl and your heart race on this one.
Jazzy guitars and footwork-style percussion come next on Tiny Tortures, followed by All The Secrets, which essentially trades the guitar of the former with piano. FlyLo finally drops a big, hollow detuned bass on Sultan’s Request. If Until The Quiet Comes is a dream, this is the “oh snap, things are about to get real weird” part of the dream.
Putty Boy Strut strolls in and conjures up an image of a robot with swag, which the official music video (see below) portrays perfectly. Neo-soulstress Erykah Badu lets her voice melt beautifully into the shimmery cymbals of See Thru To U while title track Until The Quiet Comes plays like a campfire story. Forward-thinking bassist Thundercat lends his chops and vocals on the otherworldly DMT Song before we get slapped with the funky, talking bassline and dripping synths on The Nightcaller.
The next few tracks are the wind-down, featuring an array of collaborators for some very earthy, ethereal tracks. This includes Radiohead’s Thom Yorke (Electric Candyman), Daedelus’ wife Laura Darlington (Phantasm) and Niki Randa once again on Hunger. The album concludes with the out of tune pianos of Me Yesterday//Corded and the final stop on Ellison’s long, winding journey, Dream to Me.
Until The Quiet Comes is a truly complete album, meant for listening from start to end to get the full effect. It is as dark as it is whimsical with the ability to crawl inside your mind and guide you to a world you might not have known existed. This album is Ellison’s most visceral and visual to date. Never following and always evolving, Flying Lotus has shown once again why he is the undisputed king of the beat scene. Hurry over to Beatport to buy the album.