As soon as it is out, you can sure find it on Soundcloud! It is now possible to listen to the songs of the new Flaming Lips LP, ‘The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends’ which was released on Record Store Day.
It is a series of multiple collaborations, but the songs are sure very Flaming Lips before anything else, slow and spacey, or big-sound and weird, with extra snippets of electronic and other odd noises.
‘I don’t Want You to Die’ is a sad and overly sentimental song which simply starts with a melancholic piano and Wayne Coyne‘s strange falsetto singing… the first lines of Lennon’s ‘Imagine’!! He must have gotten Yoko’s approval (as Yoko Ono is participating to another track) and later in the song, he gets some help from Coldplay’s Chris Martin; it could be a way to revisit do-you-realize-that-everyone-you-know-someday-will-die, except that this time, it is not joyous at all!
‘Helping the Retarded to Find God’ (WTF for the title!) is a melancholic guitar lullaby sang by Wayne Coyne backed up by a chorus (Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros) and some out-of-nowhere birds tweeting mixed with electronics, while recycling some Flaming Lips’ familiar sounds. It’s quite warm and fuzzy although the song drags a little and does not really go anywhere, but may be that’s the point.
‘The First Time Ever I saw Your Face’, featuring Erykah Badu, is more like recent Flaming Lips, except that it’s a cover! A 10-minute almost unrecognizable cover of the Ewan MacColl and Roberta Flack’s song, slowing expanding with a big momentum, a bombastic sound buried in reverb and distortion, and, over everything else, Badu’s great majestic voice.
‘Do It!’, featuring Yoko Ono and Plastic Ono Band, is a quite weird and nervous collage of Yoko repeatedly screaming ‘Do it!’ and whatever else the Lips had in mind this day.
‘I’m Working at NASA on Acid’ featuring Lightning Bolt has an epic Western movie feeling, something they could also have done with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, but, mid-song, this turns into a jungle of psychedelic chaotic distortion completely different from the beginning.
‘You, Man? Human?’ has all the bombastic-space-oddity we are sure used to with the Lips, but there is another layer of weirdness added to the mix with the great Nick Cave, whereas ‘That Ain’t My Trip’ featuring Jim James of My Morning Jacket, is another crazy-horse-ride-cinematic adventure, and 'Children of the Moon’ with Tame Impala is an interesting, blinded-by-light poppy tune.
And there are also tracks with Bon Iver, Ke$ha and Biz Markie, Neon Indian, New Fumes, Prefuse 73 (you have to love the title, ‘Supermoon Made Me Want to Pee’), quite a fascinating collection!