by Aurora Wetherill, of LightsOn w/ Aurora, Thursdays@10pm.
I have seen Flying Lotus, a.k.a. 31 year old Steven Ellison, perform live three times now. Everytime, he changes my life. This is not an exaggeration.
The venue is kind of weird; I’d never been to the Tower Theater before. It’s enormous, complete with two floors and rows on rows of some kind of semi-permanent folding theater chairs that you could disrupt irreparably with a misplaced step. The chairs ended up going largely unused once FlyLo came on, but provided a safe place to retreat to if an audience member got (understandably) overwhelmed.
Thundercat opened the show, wearing a big wolf pelt on his head playing a 6 string electric bass, putting on an incredible jam with one of the best synth/keyboard players I’ve ever seen. Thundercat is always spectacular, and a supreme warm up for what’s coming.
A FlyLo performance is neither all music or all show. He stands in between two screens, one in front of him, and one behind him. His visual team constructs the most impossibly mind-bending, beautiful displays and projects them through him. I have seen this particular performance twice. His most recent show incorporates a new element; the front screen is now cubically shaped, allowing for intimidating visuals centered on a spinal meridian in the middle of the stage. Most of the visuals were new, like in Sultan’s Request where the new front screen projected a lightning box around Mr. Lotus on each heavy beat. The visuals for Getting There (ft. Niki Randa) were the same as the last two sets, but they are incredible so there were no complaints. Galaxy In Jakobi, towards the end of the show, served to show the audience that Mr. Lotus is their God. No one took issue.
Unfortunately, neither Mr. Lotus nor Thundercat came out after the show, although not for lack of throngs waiting for them.