Thursday, February 26, 2015

College Music

Being a tried and true Ween fan I guess it was inevitable that I would eventually stumble into the world that is the Flaming Lips. Not only did they both break into the early 90's quasi-mainstream together via Beavis And Butthead ("She Don't Use Jelly" and "Push Th' Little Daisies" for the non-video savvy millenials) the groups would actually tour together in 2006 for almost a dozen shows. Musically, the anti-rock parallels are almost blatant; Ween was still a little more Casio-esque lo-fi than the 'Lips but both were still tinkering with the edges of "alternative" rock for an audience who still didn't know what they liked yet. 1993's Transmissions was arguable step ahead of Ween as far as production quality/song structure goes, the music is way more palatable than anything on Pure Guava; though in Ween's defense it helps when you have a whole band instead of a Tascam 4-track. Outside of 120 Minute faves "Turn It On" and the aforementioned "She Don't Use Jelly", the best thing about this album is how the last 4 songs kind of blend into a weird 16-minute mini-epic. Not only is "Slow • Nerve • Action" the best (and most touching) song I think the Flaming Lips have ever done, the lack of song breaks between the last few tunes convert the end of the album into a strange story focusing on Jesus, early-life crises, lepidopterans and invisible dogs named Paul. Maybe I've powdered a few to many hydrocodones tonight but this album is essential. Enjoy.

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