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Shift Change: 15 Surprising Leaps by Musicians

on July 15, 2015, 11:00am
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Dev Hynes


The Leap: From Lightspeed Champion to Blood Orange

No one is disputing that 29-year-old London-born artist Devonte Hynes is talented, but the vehicles for his talent – from stints as solo acoustic-folk auteur Lightspeed Champion to writing and production work for Sky Ferreira and Florence and the Machine, to the R&B-influenced electronic tour-de-force work of Blood Orange – are as varied as an eclectic record collection. Beginning in 2004 with the London-based dance punk project Test Icicles and quickly graduating to more nuanced work as Lightspeed Champion, Hynes has never stopped evolving as an artist. His more recent work, such as July’s release of “Do You See My Skin Through the Flames?” has taken a social justice bent, calling attention to racial inequality and police brutality in his adopted homeland of the US. He recently debuted new work as part of David Byrne’s music and color guard show Contemporary Color at Toronto’s Luminato Festival. –Katherine Flynn

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