The Flaming Lips
Filed by M. Trevor Higgins
First: This is a headphone album, plain and simple. Im not talking iPod earbuds while walking to class headphones. Im talking about big, fat, 1970s headphones with a thick, spiraled cord running to the turntable. If you want to enjoy this album set aside some time, sit in your favorite chair and prepare to get weird.
Mystics isnt triumphantly weird as some of their previous work, but it is still an audio playground. It is to music what ee cummings is to poetic form. And it feels like it came from the 1970s.
From the large, engrossing cover art check the vinyl because a CD wont do it justice to the colored lights of the roller rink groove Mr. Ambulance Driver, this album is another Lips time trip.
That said, the album gets muddy at parts, and even by Lips standards its far from polished. Take the following song titles, for example: The Wizard Turns On...The Giant Silver Flashlight And Puts On His Werewolf Moccasins, and It Overtakes Me / The Stars Are So Big...I Am So Small...Do I Stand A Chance?
But when Wayne Coyne and the boys are on, theyre tough to beat, as on the studio jungle-gym opener Yeah Yeah Yeah, that manages to raise issues of power while keeping a whimsical tone. W.A.N.D. is a fuzzy rocker, and, I know I said it already, but I cant stop listening to Mr. Ambulance Driver.
Three and a half out of five stars.
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