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“You can give [love] to some animals…some insects, you can give it to the trees…songs…food…anything you want…
The tree may not be able to tell you it loves you back… but by giving love, that’s the thing that makes the world a better place”
– Wayne Coyne, July 27, 2010
On Wednesday The Flaming Lips capped off three memorable days in New York City – and the American dates of their summer 2010 tour – with an incendiary “See the Leaves” performance on The Late Show with David Letterman (a Lips’ fan in the audience, Joey T, tweeted about the scene: “I had forgotten how weird the Flaming Lips are until I watched them from the Letterman crowd. People were running for cover!” “I saw people covering their ears.” – and the blogosphere freaked out that Dave was freaked out). There couldn’t be a better way for them to have followed-up the dynamic duo of shows they played the two nights before!
The Flaming Lips rarely play back-to-back nights in one city, but their balanced pair of NYC shows at the beginning of this week more than deserved such an occurrence. Monday’s performance in Central Park (perhaps the most iconic outdoor concert venue in the northeast) had the perfect jammed-out (and smoked-out) arrangements for the perfect summer in the city night with the perfect crowd (I met people from all over – California to Indiana, Texas to Belgium – many of them in cool T-shirts – Daniel Johnston, Yo Gabba Gabba!, the Family Dog (from Target!?), Sideshow Bob, Roger Waters and of course lots of rad Lips’ Ts).
Tuesday’s Terminal 5 gig – webcasted the world over – had the balloons and lighting impact not possible in the great outdoors the night before… and Wayne leading the band, as if possessed, through an unforgettable celebration for Spin’s 25th anniversary.
It was fun chatting with some of you (about all sorts of things: Yo Gabba Gabba!, The Flaming Lips’ Yo La Tengo cover with the OKC Philharmonic, Wilco and “dad rock”, Stardeath and White Dwarfs, Kliph and Steven drumming with Oneida at ATP, The Wall and Animals tours, Yoshimi on Broadway, the new Flaming Lips’ backyard/ slaughterhouse movie in the making, the nostalgia circuit in New York for “has-been” bands, the Dark Night of the Soul Bowery exhibit, David Byrne, Steven’s “Rocket Man” cover, Wayne on his front lawn in a bathtub on Google maps, The Flaming Lips photobook in the works, etc).
Now the band is off to festivals in Portugal, Poland, Norway, France, Belgium and Wales from August 4th to 21st – as well as Bestival at the Isle of Wright on September 10 – followed by scattered headling shows throughout North America in September and October and the Austin City Limits Festival on October 10.
Check back here over the next couple weeks for an ongoing series: Psych Explorations of Central Park (from Good Vibrations to Strawberry Fields, SummerStage Classics to the space bubble).