The Flaming Lips
The Flaming Lips dream big and colorful. The band’s spectrum of sounds, across its 27-year career, ranges from surging guitar chaos to off-kilter psych-rock, but the music remains united by a cinematic ethos. Wayne Coyne’s willowy tenor drifts over percolating neon arrangements in line with otherworldly album titles such as Clouds Taste Metallic, Telepathic Surgery and Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. After 1997’s bizarre four-disc Zaireeka (designed to be played on four different stereos at the same time), the Flaming Lips put noise and guitars in mothballs and favored majestic symphonic pop, producing a masterpiece in 1999’s The Soft Bulletin. Though the Lips have favored sculpted melodies and bouncy rhythms ever since, their loopy, experimental aesthetic returned to the fore on last year’s Embryonic. Complementing the band’s trippy rock visions tonight is Jack White’s swampy garage-blues side project, Dead Weather, fueled by Kills frontwoman Alison Mosshart’s husky, spooky vocals. The vibrant, wiry strut of White Rabbits suggests Spoon crossed with the Walkmen, but the undercard’s most intriguing act is Minus the Bear, whose shifty arrangements suggest prog and math rock injected with soothing Northwestern melodies. Retro girl garage punkers the Ettes and fellow Okies Stardeath and White Dwarfs also open.