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Live Review: Flying Lotus, Ta-ku, Ryan Hemsworth, JDS

14 March 2014 | 9:03 am | Cam Findlay

Shame it couldn’t have gone on longer.

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A Friday night gig at Fremantle Arts Centre, from 6pm to 10pm. You'd be forgiven for thinking it might be a chilled-out night; not so when the one and only Flying Lotus enters the house, along with some of the best futurebeat producers around.
JDS got things started early on in the evening, spinning chilled-out tunes as the sun went down in the background. He threw out a pretty good platter of tasters for the rest of the night, switching between smooth house and R&B pretty quickly.
As soon as Ryan Hemsworth started, the kids raced down to the front of the small DJ stage set up next to the main, and the crazy hipster dancing kicked off immediately. Hemsworth spun an entertaining and fluid set, with a glitch Nintendo vibe hanging over the whole thing. Tying it all up, he belted out an awesome Disclosure/Wave Racer mash-up.
The big local star and the man who brought the whole gig together, Ta-Ku, delivered a relatively mellow set. Working as a breather between the two international visitors, Ta-Ku took the chance to lay down a few live cuts that unfortunately suffered from a bit of mistiming and a bit of disinterest. Ta-Ku is still one of the best Australian producers you can find right now, but his set felt a little lackluster up amongst the full party sets that were otherwise offered.
Not so for Flying Lotus. The man is the perfect all-round entertainer: anything you want to see on stage, he can do. Tonight offered our first taste of his new Layer 3 show, which threw an entirely new dynamic on FlyLo's wonky, otherworldly beats. One screen behind his desk, one screen in front meant that Flying Lotus' music was framed by an almost 3D effect, which definitely had an effect on the whole. FlyLo came out front to thank everyone, address just how fucking excited he was to play this show: “I was inside last time… this, this is different,” he remarked. What followed was a testament of how he can flow in and out of multiple styles. Dropping a few a capella verses of alter-ego Captain Murphy's The Killing Joke (yeah, Batman references), FlyLo smoothly transitioned to the decks before dropping a bassline like a gunshot. Hardcore hip hop, R&B, house, g funk, spacey dub: it was all on offer, just to prove how much of an ecelectic professional Flying Lotus is. Shame it couldn't have gone on longer.