Album Review: The Flaming Lips – ‘UFOs at the Zoo’

The Flaming Lips are a band that’s known for their elaborate concert appearances.  Now you can enjoy it from the comfort of your easy chair with this DVD release, don’t forget to put on your costume though. 

The Flaming Lips have been called one of the “50 Bands You Must See Before You Die.”  Well I guess that I can now die, but if I did the review would stop here wouldn’t it?  The Lips are known for their elaborate shows and dedicated fans. 

The band is made up of lead singer Wayne Coyne, Steven Drozd (guitar and many other instruments), Michael Ivins (bass, guitar), and Kliph Scurlock (drums).  This concert was recorded live in their hometown at the ampitheater at the Oklahoma City Zoo.  This is the first time that the Lips have had a live concert on DVD.  The concert is quite the spectacle. 

The concert opens with a flying saucer descending onto the stage.  I suppose what’s more interesting is that the ship was built by Coyne in his backyard (or maybe just designed by him).  When the ship lands, the band descends down the gangplank, but Coyne makes his entrance in a giant plastic bubble and starts to “roll” over the crowd.  The rumor is that the Lips are going to unleash the animals from the zoo, but luckily that never happens.  However the crowd is now without its animalistic tendencies. 

In the interviews the attendees seem to come from all walks of life but some of them are running on booze, weed, or both from the nature of the few of the interviews.  Some of them consider the Lips a bit of therapy and mental catharsis.  It does seem that there’s a great deal of that and also a great deal of energy that the crowd (and Lips) unleash.  This is probably a bit lost on DVD, but it still is a good concert. 

The Lips perform their hit ‘She Don’t Use Jelly,’ ‘Free Radicals,’ and ‘The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song.’  The show is interspersed with interviews with the crowd, behind the scene action with the Lips, and Coyne “meeting” a seal. 

The DVD is called an MVI or Music Video Interactive.  You can either play it in your DVD player as a concert of put it in your computer’s DVD-ROM drive.  The DVD-ROM extras include downloadable MP3s of all the songs from the concert, the ability to make your own ringtone, your own mix of ‘The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song’ with special software, icons, wallpapers, and an art booklet PDF.  Some of those features will require you to register.

Although the Lips’ stage-show is held together with copious amounts of duct tape, the DVD is made from alien technology that will allow you to go into more depth via your DVD-ROM drive.  The concert was a blast, but I bet it was better to be there.  Luckily, no animals were harmed in the making of this event.  Although I bet a hangover or two was acquired. 

‘UFOs at the Zoo’ is now available at Amazon. Visit the music database for more information.

Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.