NO!: THE FLAMING LIPS (#310, SEP 8 2007).

The Flaming Lips

"Mountainside" (36.0 MB)
from In a Priest Driven Ambulance

Willow Island
Madison, WI
September 8, 2007

It's kind of weird to realize what an immense back-catalog the Flaming Lips have -- they've been together since the early 80's and have released 11 albums, plus a ton of non-album material. But for their first 15 years or so, they got only a glimpse of the big time, peeking through as part of the Summer of Alternative Rock in 1993 with "She Don't Use Jelly." Imagine if there were an episode of TRL where the bands being counted down were the Flaming Lips, Belly, Soul Asylum, the Breeders, the Lemonheads, 4 Non Blondes, the Proclaimers, Porno For Pyros and Green Jelly, all of whom were beat out by the new Dinosaur Jr single. Some of us who were 14 at the time actually thought it would go on forever.

The Lips' encore was announced with ancient footage from the old Jon Stewart Show on their big backdrop screen, an introduction for a TV performance of "She Don't Use Jelly" from half a lifetime ago. That they would close on the type of song that many bands in their position would try to bury -- can you imagine Foo Fighters encoring "Big Me"? -- and do it in a totally earnest way says a lot about their approach. Nonetheless, tracks from records other than their last three were few and far between; just "Jelly" and this one, from their last indie record, 1990's In a Priest Driven Ambulance.

It felt a bit like an unearthed fossil, an epic batch of fuzz and streamers as Wayne Coyne tried valiantly to fire his confetti blaster through a cymbal, and then closed the song out with a series of massive gong strikes. That they could construct a stage show so intertwined with, in particular, their last two albums' worth of music, but also seamlessly drop in a 17-year-old album cut, was really impressive.

Posted by Aaron S. Veenstra ::: 2007:09:11:08:00

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