REVIEW: Flying Lotus - Pattern+Grid World EP





The music world seemed slightly taken aback at the news Flying Lotus was releasing a new EP. Coming just a few short months after his tour de force that is Cosmogramma was released, it seemed implausible that he would be producing anything for a while. However, FlyLo soon proved that time is not an issue for him, releasing a record that rivaled its predecessor in entertainment value and maintained his streak of great music. Pattern+Grid World solidifies his role and reputation as a master of his craft, without delving deeper into anything new.

Clocking in at only 18 ½ minutes, the EP flashes by. It contains none of the fluidity and grace of Cosmogramma, but creates its own flow and sound. The songs here aren’t as painstakingly arranged and mixed, and none of the songs on the EP match the wildly expansive sound typified by the album. However, it is a more upbeat experience. Although FlyLo is still bringing the same complexity and creativity to his electronic beats, here they are more accessible and digestible.

Easily the best song on the EP is “Kill Your Co-Workers.” FlyLo is not often known for happy, rapidly paced jams but he pulls it off with this track, utilizing a double time beat and acrobatic 8-bits and near uplifting synths. Anyone from Chicago will recognize that Ellison is most likely drawing elements from juke and turning it into his own kind of beast, which is a welcome influence. It’s certainly the most danceable thing he’s produced in a while.

The rest of the record is somewhat typical fare if you’ve come to know Flying Lotus well. Squelching and often offbeat bass, complex and swirling synths and additional instrumentals that border on the downright weird. “Jurassic Notion / M Theory” is the best example of this and another standout track of the short EP. It combines the pounding bass with some interesting drum kit work, synths and the sounds of a crowd, all before a dramatic shift in pace in true FlyLo fashion.

The best way to describe the EP is fast. It arrived fast and it leaves fast. By the time you’ve finished the record the repeat has already kicked in and it’s often hard to not go through it another time. It isn’t FlyLo’s best work, but it does no harm to his wildly impressive catalog and by that feat is light-years ahead of the rest of the music world.

81 — [Rating Scale]