FLAMING LIPS

This is a review of their show at Key Arena in Seattle, WA 10/21/03
By Melody Alderman


Flaming Lips are an alternative band with enough heart to warm up a cold Seattle evening. Fronted by the socially conscious Wayne Coyne, The Flaming Lips know how to throw a damn good party. Complete with dancers dressed in animal costumes (including most band members), and tons of big inflatable balloons floating about the arena, it was impossible to keep a smile off of your face.

There was a camera mounted to the end of Wayne's microphone stand, which he kept singing into while the image displayed on a very large screen behind him. Using a boxing nun as a prop, he sent many messages to the packed house while still having fun. One of his messages included his feelings on the Iraq situation. "There are boys dying over there everyday, many of whom would probably be here at this show if they were home. Let's get them out of there." A very powerful and heartfelt sentiment that brought a harsh reality to the crowd of teens through forty-somethings.

The Flaming Lips launched into a cover of the White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army." They owned the cover with such vigor, it was difficult to believe that it was not one of theirs. Apparently, after Jack White was injured in a car accident last summer, the White Stripes had to pull out of a festival date that The Flaming Lips were billed on as well. Jack asked Wayne if they could play some Stripes songs to represent the band in their absence. Wayne obliged and mixed the set with songs from both bands, which brought about the "Seven Nation Army" cover they are still performing live.

The general admission crowd was filled with thousands of overly anxious fans. This created a real fanatic environment for the fans towards the front of the stage who were being pushed and shoved. Wayne pleaded with the crowd between songs for the 'big guys not to hurt the little guys' and for everyone to look out for one another.

Towards the end of the set, it became difficult to focus on the band as they performed. On the screen behind them was a woman dancing. This may have not distracted the audience's attention if it had not been for the fact that the dancing woman was wearing nothing besides some small bikini underwear.

The Flaming Lips closed the set with "Do You Realize?" The perfect ending sentiment for a performance full of realizations.

TANGLED UP IN THE WEB

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LYRICS TO LIVE BY
"And instead of saying
all of your goodbyes
-let them know-
You realize that life goes fast
It's hard to make
the good things last
You realize the sun doesn't go down
It's just an illusion caused
by the world spinning round"

Song * Do You Realize?
Album * "Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots
"You haven't got a clue
And you don't know what to do
You used your money
and your friends
To try and trick me
But you won't trick me"

Song * Haven't Got A Clue
Album * At War With The Mystics
"If you'd just come down
From your space tower jail
I could have shown you
Those colors aren't so pale
The way it glows
The way it shines
The way it plays on
The dimensions in your mind"

Song * The Impulse
Album * Embryonic
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