Comparable to the larger profiles of Danger Mouse, DJ Shadow and Madlib, Flying Lotus is a musician and producer rooted within Hip Hop yet steadily toiling outside of its exclusive confines. As the visionary force behind sensational jazz singer Jose James and bassist Thundercat, his wide range has earned a respectable online presence that has extended to instrumental works featured on Blu’s NoYork! LP and Adult Swim. Routinely honing the craft he has built since 2006, Until The Quiet Comes is the latest trip through the evolving trajectory of Flying Lotus.
Most endeared by avant-garde critics and ambitious beatmakers, Flying Lotus’ experimental streak nearly becomes a flaw on Until The Quiet Comes. As its title suggests, the album is a collage seemingly designed for consumption at night before slumber as heard on the ambient “All In,” the appropriately named hypnotic “DMT Song” and the trance inducing “Phantasm.” His adulation resultant from pushing the envelope, Lotus tampers with a number of sounds and frequencies to make a creative mark that would be highly impressive were it a bit easier to follow. Where Erykah Badu should be a sure shoe-in for garnering attention, the complex arrangements on “See Thru To U” are overbearing though remedied by the mellow title track and the catchier head nodder “Putty Boy Strut,” slight reprieves from the disjointed rhythms found throughout.
While Flying Lotus takes an approach that is interesting enough for the openminded and readily comprehended by those already immersed in his catalog, the soothing qualities of Until The Quiet Comes aren’t compelling so as to win over untrained ears. With points rewarded for originality and innovation the composer’s greatest strengths are also his faults, as this effort lacks cohesion and sensible sequencing making for an exercise in patience that only biased fans would process as a sign of genius.