Lucian Blomkamp's third album Sick Of What I Don’t Understand – to be released over the next part year in a series of movements – is themed around difficult transformations and self-realisation. Almost a commentary on itself, it's a documenting of the processes he went through to break out from his previous accomplished but limited incarnation to the new levels of ambition and confidence he shows as a musician now. Just in the first movement alone, even though it has a claustrophobic, trapped aesthetic, you can hear exactly how far he has branched out: from the Massive Attack-like “Crawling” to the fearsome drones and rolling rhythm of the title track, from the mutant pop of “Nothing” with Rromarin's alien vocals to the dreamlike reimagining of UK bass music “Still No” featuring the dark poetry of MC legend Trim.

The title – Sick of What I Don't Understand – means many things, but in part alludes to the frustration of wanting to reach outside one's own comfort zone. SOWIDU is not a piece of musical theatre, mind, nor is it just self-analysis: it is a fully-functioning album in its own right, and many of the expressions of the themes are subtle and metaphorical. But its central message is instantly audible, as you hear Lucian unfolding and expanding as a composer and performer, on a record dramatically different from the intimate, hazy electronica of its predecessors.

This is not the first radical transformation in Lucian's life, though. Indeed change has been the only constant for him since he can remember. He grew up around Cape Town, South Africa, moving often, his life revolving around the violin which he learned – at his own insistence – from the age of six. In fact it was the violin that would take him across the world to his adopted home at 13 – the chance to study music was a big part of the move to Melbourne. But as soon as he got there, his horizons broadened in other ways. "Aside from classical," he says, "I was just a complete blank canvas of a person as far as musical and artistic tastes go. I knew the hits, I guess, but I just wasn't drawn to it. Moving to Australia opened my eyes in a million different ways. My girlfriend now was the first person I ever met in Australia, and the music she listened to I had no idea existed." As his circle of friends grew, and he started to feel settled, so his tastes grew, and he began to inhale all kinds of songwriter, experimental and electronic music.

He began to write and record songs, initially entirely folky, acoustic stuff "purely because I didn't know what the process was for recording other instruments". Finally, at around 15 or 16, frustrated with his limited palette, he tried to add drums with the computer, "and went, woah, you can do a lot with a computer, can't you?" This simple realisation became a gradual epiphany as he started to dig into exactly what you could achieve in the digital realm, and the sonic exploration that would lead to his first releases began. Rather than trying to emulate any particular record or genre, just trying to find new textures and new ways of realising his songs meant that he "got into electronic music by default".

As school came to an end, though, everything still revolved around classical music and the violin. "I dunno if I'd ever have been good enough to be a soloist," says Lucian, "but I could pretty easily have got a job in some orchestra." But the electronic sounds he'd spent the last three years or so digging into became a spanner in the works and he realised that he didn't really want to play composed orchestral music any more in the way he had since early childhood. Unsure of what exactly he DID want, he chose to go to university and study the music industry, but this was, he quickly realised, "an awful mistake", and he dropped out after only a month. "That was the moment," he says "of ‘let's make this work’" and he decided to take his own music very seriously. "Not as if I just wanted to be a producer to fill a void, but because I realised I was willing to give up everything for it, it became obvious how much I was willing to commit, so that was it, basically!"

And boy did he commit. From this moment on his workrate was ferocious and soon found himself the recipient of the Northern Lights Competition run by community radio station FBi backed by the Australian government, the prize being to play at the Iceland Airwaves Festival in Reykjavik and collaborate with local artists. In 2016, his track “From Afar” was sampled by Atlanta hip hop artist 6LACK, which not only helped raise his international profile, but led to an ongoing and fruitful creative relationship with Lucian producing for 6LACK, and certainly aided the stylistic branching out that SOWIDU documents. Likewise a mixtape with John Hassell of hugely influential Sydney electronic trio Seekae helped develop the steely sonic focus that would get Lucian where he is now.

All this change doesn't mean leaving the past entirely behind. Lucian still plays the violin with a passion, for example, even if it's no longer his life's focus. And he is certainly proud of his past creativity. "I'm happy with those [first two] albums,” he says, “and they're very coherent. But the flipside of that is that there's a limited sound there. In the year and a half it's taken me to make this album, I've realised that, and I'm having a whole lot more fun now that I'm able to spread out into something more.” And that is “something more” in many, many different senses. Happier, more certain, more confident, and also with a rock-solid network of creative friends, collaborators and supporters, the Lucian of SOWIDU is a young man ready to take on the world. Change may be his only constant, but his sharp awareness of that and fierce focus in making sure it is the right kind of change makes him a force to be reckoned with.