Burning with these atmospheric temple percussions on the introduction, “Theme” is the realignment of the natural chakras. You’re Dead! is primarily instrumental but does feature some vocalization later in the listing. A majority of the real intricacies with rhythms and programming comes from Thundercat’s layered bass work and sectioning to be overbearing jazz at times.
Still something of sporadic sensibility, You’re Dead! jumps from 19 tracks in 38 minutes, giving the audience moments to get a grounding before being swept again and having the wool traditional rug pulled from them. The first three tracks, “Theme,” “Tesla,” and “Cold Dead,” blitz by like a rocket ship heading straight to orbit. While lots of detail is packed into the tracks, Flying Lotus makes the listener relisten multiple times to capture all the minute elements. However, when “Never Catch Me” which features Kendrick Lamar jumps into the frame. There is a combination factor that appears from both the fast-paced jazz fusion from before and the hip-hop mecca that erects from the earth.
With the first introduction of vocalization coming from Lamar on You’re Dead!, the grouping here becomes a breath of fresh sound to the ears. He describes, “I can see the darkness in me and it’s quite amazing. Life and death is no mystery and I wanna taste it…” He continues on as the bass becomes more warped and divulges into a combative figure. “Step inside of my mind and you’ll find curiosity, animosity, high philosophy, hyper prophesied mediation,” staying consistent with the theme of Flying Lotus’ images of reawakening’s of the nervous system and higher understanding.
But You’re Dead! is not all just about creating the fastest and most complicated patterns of music, on “Siren Song” that features Angel Deradoorian, the instrumentation is more meditative and calming. Much of the piece is a repeating pattern that uses a dreamscape of timpani rolls and crashing cymbals to paint waves instead of waterfalls of hard-to-catch style. “Siren Song” is essentially the easiest approach on the ears with You’re Dead! and shows that the record has an immense depth to the recording.
But through the 19 tracks, and endless apparitions that Flying Lotus moves into the realm of being, You’re Dead! continues to impress for its avant-garde stylings. The winding and warped patterns make catching the record an immaculate feat and gives hunting a musical whale a true background.
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