The Review Corner has seen The Flaming Lips live countless times, we’ve danced on stage with them (when they had Santas and Aliens) and when two Review Cornerers got married, a Lips’ song (Do You Realize?) was the first dance.
Just to say: we’re biased. This will not be a critical review.
The Flaming Lips formed in 1983 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Do You Realize? is the official rock song of Oklahoma state).
After signing to Warner Brothers, they released Hit To Death In The Future Head in 1992; 1999 saw The Soft Bulletin, NME’s album of the year, and possibly their best, and then the equally classic Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots in 2002.
The Lips are eccentric, and do what they want to do, whether it’s following the cute and catchy At War with the Mystics with the more abstract Embryonic, covering Dark Side of the Moon or The Beatles (the charity album With a Little Help From My Fwends was a rework of Sgt Pepper), or cataloguing marital breakdown on The Terror.
This compilation features most of their best songs, along with other songs that vary in familiarity. It runs chronologically so CD1 features early work including live favourites She Don’t Use Jelly and Race For The Prize, one of the finest live songs ever played on earth.
CD2 features Yoshimi and Realize?, as well as more recent material. CD3 is oddments, from unreleased demos to B-sides.
They’re one of the most creative bands ever, and while there is nothing too weird on this compilation, you can forgive them anything for their better songs, some of which stand up against the best rock songs ever written.
If you’ve never seen them live you should do. The first two minutes, when they open with Race For The Prize and shower the audience balloons and confetti, will be the finest two minutes of your year. Unless you see them twice on the same tour.