On July 2, 2013, not one but two new Pretty Lights albums will be released: A Color Map of the Sun and its essential companion, Live Studio Sessions From A Color Map of the Sun. The first PL efforts to be sold commercially after a series of acclaimed free-download albums and EPs, the Color Map project represents a turning point in Pretty Lights mastermind Derek Vincent Smith’s artistic growth. A self-professed “sample collage” artist, Smith decided it was time to create his own. “Before, I’d combine 25 samples into one song,” he explains. “This time, I was going to create my own original sources, retaining the timbre that spans the great musical era of the last century – from modern classical and jazz, to ‘60s soul and beyond.”
This idea sent Smith into an intensely laborious, obsessive..