Music

The New Definition of Epic

Chad W. Lutz
Have a day to kill? Just when you thought The Flaming Lips couldn’t get anymore “out there,” the band from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, mystifies and dumbfounds yet again. As if giant hands that shoot laser beams, megaphones that spew colored smoke, and light shows that could give even the most Nystagmus-immune individual an epileptic seizure weren’t enough, the band some refer to as the modern incarnation of Pink Floyd has been up to their old tricks.

In quasi-Pink Floyd fashion, The Flaming Lips set out to do what no other band before them had accomplished. The band first pushed the envelope in late-September with the release of an ambitious six-hour song called, “I Found a Star on the Ground.” Yes, you read that correctly. In an interview with Rolling Stone’s Matthew Perpetua dated September 14, 2011, bandleader and perennial madman Wayne Coyne describes the song as: “Velvet Underground meets Super Mario Brothers.” The song spawned from a previously recorded composition by band mate and lead guitarist Steven Drozd. The original song alone stood at twenty-five minutes long. Coyne and the rest of the Flaming Lips crew apparently thought it: “could have gone on for a couple of hours.” Oh, to be so imaginative.

But, did they stop there? Of course they didn’t. They’re The Flaming Lips. On the heels of an already unfathomable six-hour epic, the band without borders set right to work creating a song so long it’s almost hard for me to right about it seriously.

It’s called, “Human Skull,” and it’s the latest addition to The Flaming Lips archive. Coming in at twenty-four hours long, “Human Skull,” gives new meaning to the word epic. In an article on Pitchfork.com, Coyne is reported as saying: “It’s a song about death and it’s a song about fucking and it’s a song about life.” One can only wonder how far one can go into the realm of these ideas given twenty-four hours to invent.

Both songs are currently available for download. “I Found a Star on the Ground” can be purchased from Jackpot Records or found streaming on numerous sites throughout the web. “Human Skull” was set to stream live for the first time ever midnight on Halloween.
photo courtesy of Google