@ZackTeibloom Wayne Coyne is always in complete control of everything happening on and off stage in a Flaming Lips performance. Even if his spaceship veers a bit off course at times. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy wherever he chooses to fly it. I mean, tonight we had Wayne riding the shoulders of someone in a bear costume as he sang and later had the whole crowd acting like a cougar, cat, bee and locust (he wasn’t sure how we should act when we were locusts, but he got us to try.) The shenanigans and banter were as fun as ever, but I’d never seen a set like this. A set centered around Embryonic meant a real lack of electric guitar. Wayne barely picked one up the whole set. The only staples were “She Don’t Use Jelly” and “Do You Realize.”
They played zero songs off of 2006’s At War with the Mystics, zero songs off of 1999’s The Soft Bulletin and only one song off of their most popular album, 2002’s Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. But a Flips show is about so much more than the music. With only an hour, some of which he graciously gave to Thax Douglas for the first poem I’ve ever understood by him, Wayne stayed in control and made the most of it.
Wayne’s bravado was apparent before he even makes his grandest of entrances. The thing about a grand entrance is the level of mystique before the appearance. Wayne scoffed at that aspect of the mystique. He hung out in plain sight on stage, waiting for the band playing opposite him to stop, so he could tell us what to expect.
He announced he was about to come out in his space bubble, pointed right and said he’d be heading their first, but don’t worry, left side, he made sure to say he loves you too. He asked that we peacefully accept his bubble and not trample each other. It seemed to work. Five minutes later, he came right over our heads
Yeah, I touched the bubble and no one shoved anyone as he made his journey around the front 20 rows or so. It was as magical as ever and Wayne had us in the palm of his hand.
Musically, it wasn’t my favorite. I prefer the shredding guitars and far more songs off the three albums they mostly ignored, but I touched the bubble, got to “rawr” a lot and Wayne’s banter was as funny as ever. Take me wherever you want, Wayne.