Steven Ellison has built an impressive reputation among critics and fans in the know for mixing hip hop, jazz and electronica into something original. But even for the aforementioned followers, the new album from Ellison — better-known as Flying Lotus — is a surprise. It's all about death, not as something to be mourned but as a journey to be anticipated.

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Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage

The West Virginia natives, both widely respected in the world of string-band music, perform live.

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John Londono/Courtesy of the artist

The rootsy folk-rock band formed after its singer heard a harpist through his apartment wall.

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Rebecca Reed/Courtesy of the artist

This catchy pop-punk song has a wistful quality befitting a desire to cling desperately to youth.

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Inspired by Mexican folk art and the Day of the Dead holiday, The Book of Life follows two men who are vying for the hand of a kung-fu practicing maiden in a small Mexican village.

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