The Flaming Lips at the Newport

The Flaming Lips' The Soft Bulletin didn't make sense to me until I saw it performed live.

In a half-full Newport Music Hall, the Lips put on a show with Sebadoh and Robyn Hitchcock. You could also rent a set of FM headphones as part of an experiment along the lines of their Zaireeka project. I opted to listen the old-fashioned way.

For this tour, the band played without guitarist Ronald Jones as a three-piece. Steven Drozd jumped back and forth between drums, keyboards, guitars, and samplers. Wayne Coyne played way less guitar than other times I had seen him.

Also new was the projection screen behind the band. This is where the new album began to take shape and make sense to me. They projected scenes from cult classic films as well as their own warped home videos. The performance was really low tech and a precursor to the extravaganza yet to come.

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