On Ultraviolet, Sadistik closes his eyes tight and reaches out towards the peripheries of perception through introspection and psychedelic escapism, transcribing the vivid images crawling on the dark purple walls of his Seattle studio. The day after he finished recording 2013’s critically acclaimed Flowers For My Father, Sadistik (born Cody Foster) began writing the new record with a head full of acid, left field 60s & 70s cinema and palpable frustration with the world around him.
Falling somewhere on the spectrum between the confessionals of Atmosphere and dark heart of Cage, and inspired by the delivery and ethos of the legendary Eyedea, Seattle-based emcee Sadistik has been a force on the indie scene for the better part of a decade, opening for artists such as Lupe Fiasco and collaborating with the likes of Sage Francis, Astronautalis and Ceschi. He began Ultraviolet as an exercise in creativity, pushing himself to never take a day off and make the best album of his career for the second year in a row.
With production from SXMPLELIFE, Eric G, Maulskull and Kid Called Computer and guest shots from Eyedea, Lotte Kestner, Tech N9ne, Sticky Fingaz and Nacho Picasso, Ultraviolet peels back the layers behind Foster’s synesthesia (seeing sound as color or otherwise mixing of the senses) and reveals the colorful terrain just out of reach in the daytime when “the skies cry 365”. He details a shifting Pacific Northwest cloud cover while referencing everyone from Orwell to Burroughs and examining the self in the era of surveillance and diminishing returns.
“Cult Leader” begins the album with an ominous banger emblematic of Sadistik’s finest, most nuanced writing. “1984” channels André 3000 in its opening bars before Sadistik abstractedly explores the omnipresence of big brother. “Cubic Zirconia” features interludes from Italian film icon Asia Argento and an urgent, melodic third verse harmonized with the vocals of Lotte Kestner. Eyedea delivers an eerily prophetic verse on “Chemical Burns” that reminds listeners just what a masterful lyricist and narrator of the human condition he was. Sadistik adopts a deft delivery on the track to complement that of his lost friend whose torch he proudly carries on through every album.
Ultraviolet is Sadistik’s unabashed nose dive into the subconscious mind, a three dimensional portrait painted in hues of psychosis and psychedelia. Drawing on his background in clinical psychology and cinematic predilections, he creates a richly layered world of his own and offers the listener a passing glimpse through the keyhole.