The 5-piece, Lotus, continues to push boundaries with the release of Monks, a hip-hop album featuring Lyrics Born, Gift of Gab (Blackalicious), Mr. Lif, Doodlebug (Digable Planets) and more. Using the band's own studio work as a sample source, the music will have a familiar feel but recontextualized as classic hip-hop.
"The project started with a couple tracks we recorded with Mr. Lif," explains Luke Miller. "From there, we just kept expanding to eventually include 11 different MCs and singers. Lotus is predominantly an instrumental band, so it was a lot of fun to create these collaborations."
Instrumental interlude tracks push into more experimental to create cinematic vignettes. Jesse Miller states, "For the interludes, we went toward funk and jazz influenced beat music. Off-time drum beats, analog synthesizers, tape echo machines and even a baritone guitar were used to record these short evocative set pieces."
The tracks on the album are woven together with a narrative following a monk's journey. "Life as a touring artist feels monastic sometimes. Monks devote their entire lives to their spirituality. We devote much of ours to music and have to sacrifice certain things to make that happen," says Luke.
Monks is available on vinyl for purchase and digitally for free via Bandcamp, or on iTunes.
13 - Morrison, CO - Red Rocks Amphitheatre
14 - Kansas City, MO - Dancefestopia 2013
15 - Columbia, MD - The Blue Note
18 - Nashville, TN - Marathon Music Works
19 & 20 - Athens, GA - Georgia Theatre
21 & 22 - Charlottesville, VA - The Jefferson Theater
25-27 - Placerville, CA - Hangtown Halloween Ball
31 - Morgantown, WV - Metropolitan Theater
1 - Columbus, OH - Newport Music Hall
2 - St. Louis, MO - The Pageant
3 - Urbana, IL - Canopy Club
5 - Covington, KY - Madison Theater
7 - Stroudsburg, PA - Sherman Theater
8 - Syracuse, NY - F Shed at the Market
9 & 10 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
30 - New York, NY - Terminal 5
30 & 31 - Philadelphia, PA - Electric Factory
4-9 - The Open Seas, FL - Jam Cruise
14-16 - Live Oak, FL - AURA Music Festival