If you haven’t heard the decade defining music of Flying Lotus yet, Never Catch Me is a sign that it isn’t too late. For years, this Coltrane descendant has been churning out his blend of atmospheric electronic jazz and has taken on the critical world by galactic storm. His music may have been heard by the mainstream via Adult Swim or the latest Grand Theft Auto, but Flying Lotus, born Steven Ellison, may finally take on the world with this new track. Featuring the gifted rapper Kendrick Lamar, Never Catch Me is both accessible electronic jazz and a hip hop song that goes outside of its comfort zone.
The production is as fluid as a running river. Every sound rolls off one another, and you are constantly being thrust forward from the initial piano line until the interstellar ending. Flying Lotus doesnt play it safe to try and attract more listeners as he sticks to his successful cookbook and serves up the oozing rhythms he is best at. You ascend into the milky way with this track; whether your trip is physical or spiritual is up to you. While Flying Lotus has been atmospheric before, this is a good example of him aiming for another galaxy and not just ours. This song’s journey will have different directions each listen but will always end up in the same climactic destinstion.
Kendrick Lamar is more than a hip hop artist here. He sprays words so quickly that he becomes an instrument like a rolling jazz snare or a lead saxophone. He doesn’t overtake the song: he just supplies exactly what the song needed. His wordplay and speed present us with Lamar at possibly his best yet, and this window into the future can guarantee us greatness. If you are unsure if Lamar is truly as good as they say, this song will prove them wrong as it shows that he’s even better than they imagined. Together, two of the best in their respective fields have crafted a song that only goes warp speed but is pleasant enough to make the ride a thrill and not a calamity.