Tag Archives: Flying Lotus

Eclectic Mainline 3rd October 2012

So, the new Flying Lotus album is out.  Jumbo Records sold out of the deluxe vinyl edition before I managed to get one.  I had mixed emotions as a result.  I was both disappointed (for me) but pleased (for FlyLo and Jumbo).  Clap along with this:

Shonen Knife are currently on a tour of the UK and Ireland.  Have a look at their live dates and see if there is still time for you to catch them.

Another tune from this week’s show with a video worth feasting your eyes on is that by The Helio Sequence:

If you want to listen back to the show, be my guest.  This is what I played: Continue reading

I have Battles in my life. And Flying Lotus. And Nice Nice

Flying Lotus - apologies for not having my proper camera with me

Flying Lotus - apologies for not having my proper camera with me

Monday was another of this years Warped days.  The albums I’d listened to during the day comprised of two by Aphex Twin (twice each) and one by Squarepusher.  Then I went over to Manchester to a sold out Warp Records triple-decker at the Academy 2 – Battles / Flying Lotus / Nice Nice.  I was right down at the front from the start, so got a perfect view of all the on-stage trickery employed to produce the amazing sounds of the night.  At first I regretted not having my camera, as I could have got some great close ups, but by the end of the night I was very glad I didn’t have it.

Nice Nice are a duo who create live loops using all manner of instruments and gadgets.  One of their songs broke down, but in a way that was one of the best points in their set, showing as it did that all they were doing was live.  One of the most interesting tricks they employed was shouting into the guitar pickups through a megaphone.

I wasn’t too sure what to make of Flying Lotus at first. He seemed a little too keen to make sure we all noticed he was swigging vodka straight from the bottle.  And seeing as how the tools of his trade were fewer than those of Nice Nice – a laptop and a couple of control surfaces – there wasn’t much more visually to focus on. However, the big grin on his face, as he clearly enjoys what he does, and the strength of his music, more than compensated for his drinking antics.  The horripilating bass and ethereal vocal samples gel brilliantly with sometimes frenetic, and sometimes lilting beats.  I was not the only person who had been won over, and the crowd were loving it.  I can’t remember the last time I saw a support act summoned back on stage for an encore, but Flying Lotus and his grin were brought back on for more.

I’d seen Battles before, at the ATP Festival in 2008, so I already knew I was in for a treat.  But being right at the front meant I got a better look at how they worked together.  The drummer would occasionally leave his stage-front position to adjust the controls on one of the guitar amps, or to even change the jack lead into it.  As with Nice Nice, much of their set was built upon live loops, and they’ve clearly worked very hard and are really in sync with one another.  Their set closer, Atlas, not surprisingly caused a bit of a mêlée down the front, and I’ve not been in a moshpit like that for nearly 20 years!  My camera might have suffered some damage had it been with me, so by this point I was glad I’d left it in Bradford.  The trailing leg of a stage diver caught my head though, relieving me of an earplug, so I retreated to a safer position at the back of the room for the encore.  This was a new song that will feature on the next album, and it bodes well.

Monday wasn’t my first Warp-dominated day this year – the Warp20 day I spent in Sheffield, or the day I bought the Warp20 Box Set being two others of note.  But it’s nicely nicely rounded off a year when being a fan of Warp almost became fanaticism!

Warp20 (Sheffield)

[Before I begin, please note, I’m no expert on Park Hill Flats and until this week I knew nothing about them, so forgive me if you know more than I do and I have got any facts wrong.  I think the following is fairly accurate though…]

Park Hill Flats, Sheffield

Park Hill Flats, Sheffield

Park Hill Flats were built in the late 1950s to re-house entire streets of people from one of Sheffield’s poorest slums into “streets in the sky”.  The scheme attracted a lot of attention, both nationally and internationally and was considered a pioneering project. However, within 15-years or so the level of poverty had not improved, and the high concentration of people meant that the level of crime and overall living conditions were if anything worse than the days when the slums were at ground level.  Many of England’s (visually, at least) similar high rise residential blocks have since been pulled down, but those in the Park Hill area were given Grade II listed status in 1998.  Since then there has been a move to renovate the flats, but at present they are in a curious state.

Now in 2009, while some of the neighbouring blocks of flats have been gutted with a view to renovation, the bulk of Park Hill estate is mostly unpopulated, and boarded up, with just one wing still being occupied by tenants.  This wing, and three unpopulated wings, form a horseshoe with a grassy embankment sloping down into the curve.  This accidental amphitheatre was chosen by Warp Records for a cinematic event as part of the label’s 20th anniversary celebrations. Continue reading