March 16, 2013


Flying Lotus Made People Go Insane at SXSW

Jason Kempin
Jason Kempin

You want to know the moment when leftfield electronic/hip-hop artist Flying Lotus' South by Southwest set went from general insanity to batsh-t, people-losing-their-minds crazy?

It wasn't when he dropped a remix of Watch the Throne's "N-ggas in Paris," though for most DJs, just playing the intro and calling it a day would be enough. 

Check out our favorite live shots from the day at SXSW.

It wasn't when he warped Kendrick Lamar's already-weird beat from "Backseat Freestyle," which is basically an electronic beat disguised as hip hop to begin with. 

It was the horn blasts of "Higher Ground" by TNGHT, the production duo comprised of Scotland's Hudson Mohawke and Montreal DJ Lunice. Lotus has been incorporating the track into his set since last summer, but for tonight's crowd at MySpace's (not) Secret (at all) Show, the air raid sirens and throbbing bass, amplified, chopped up and twisted in Lotus' own singular style, made it feel like the venue would collapse at any moment.

Far from the rote knob-twiddling of some of his peers, Lotus flanked himself between two screens displaying double helixes, animated robots, celestial landscapes and other trippy visuals. Obscuring the DJ reinforced his mythical status and complemented the set, a mix of his own productions and the aforementioned tracks. "I need a nap," said one fan. She probably echoed the feelings of many there.