For our regular Future Is Now column we profile the hottest artists who are climbing the charts, breaking the Internet or just dominating our office stereos.
SOUNDS LIKE: Lenny Kravitz was backed by a killer jazz crew
FOR FANS OF: Prince's Chaos & Disorder funk-rock phase, James Blood Ulmer, Robert Randolph
WHY YOU SHOULD PAY ATTENTION: Bassist, vocalist and composer Miles Mosley is part of the West Coast Get Down, the Los Angeles jazz collective who released Kamasi Washington's spiritual jazz masterpiece The Epic after a whirlwind month of studio work that yielded over 170 songs. Released late January on respected indie label Alpha Pup, Mosley's Uprising is the second LP from those famed sessions. However, it's a very different sounding work from Washington's opus: Here, Mosley leads the troupe on a funk, rock and jazz excursion marked by his honest and emotive vocals and deeply metaphorical lyrics.
Mosley has earned credits on Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly and Chris Cornell's Carry On; played in Jonathan Davis of Korn's band the Simply Fucking Amazings; and has produced a lengthy list of film scores and trailer music, including The Dark Knight Rises. He has also released two albums that he classifies as "local" projects, but nothing with the potential reach of Uprising. "I was always distracted by being someone else's sideman, which is the way everybody felt in the West Coast Get Down," he explains. "That's why the sessions were so special, because we all decided to really invest in ourselves for once and not be distracted by the other facets of our careers... We figured, now is the time to really take this body of music that we had worked up, and execute it correctly."
HE SAYS: During the Epic tour, the West Coast Get Down became the rare jazz ensemble to play at massive pop festivals like Coachella and Outside Lands. "As a group, we've never performed in typical [jazz] venues," says Mosley. "I've always championed the fact that we not play your standard sit-down jazz clubs. Instead, in Los Angeles we play bars, or the Viper Room, or the Roxy. We play more rock venues because we hit hard."
HEAR FOR YOURSELF: On "Abraham", Mosley explores a crackling, gospel-tinged blues. "Dig it man! Kaboom!" he sings.