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The Flaming Lips (Steve Burns & Alfie)

Carling Academy, Glasgow on 8th November 2003
Reviewed by Paul on 17th November 2003

Steve Burns

Are you reasonably prepared to rock?

Well, after tonight's opening act had finished you were. Songs about kittens, songs about dustmites, songs about the unified field theory, is this a gig or a science lesson? Neither, it can only be one thing: STEVE BURNS. An absolutely superb opening act... does anyone remember blue's clues? If so then yes, this is the same Steve Burns. We were treated to visual delights on the large projection screen behind the band, a journey into male pattern baldness and glimpses of the other two acts from tonights spectacle. Oh, they also played music.

Rating: 8/10
Website: www.steveswebpage.com

Alfie

After a short break the stage was flooded, not by roadies, but by Alfie, the second support band: it was always going to be tough following a band like Steve Burns but Alfie proved they were a good band, some strong songs, good videos, their own light show and enough members to be a strong 7 a side football team. In closing their set they decided it was time to thank The Flaming Lips for taking them on tour by presenting them with BUCKFAST the national drink of the Glasweigian neds. The interaction with the fans was superb.

Rating: 7/10
Website: www.alfie-uk.com

The Flaming Lips

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One word can sum up the Carling Academy when The Flaming Lips burst into thier first song, Race for the Prize: MAYHEM!!! Giant balloons were launched about the venue, confetti was thrown over those in the audience lucky enough to be at the front (and the unsuspecting members of the press and security who clearly didn't have a clue what was going on). Fans were plucked from the audience just before the show, given animal costumes and told to dance like maniacs at either side of the stage, all in a days work for Wayne Coyne and co.

As you'd expect from a Flaming Lips concert the usual wacky props were in full use, from a hand puppet of a nun helping the audience to sing along to Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots to strobe lights, a toy dove together with flapping wings, a megaphone, smoke machines, giant boxing gloves, fake blood... Race For the Prize was followed by a superb cover of the white stripes song Seven Nation Army. In typical Lips tradition Happy Birthday was sung to members of the audience who were celebrating thier birthday on the day of the extravaganza that is The Flaming Lips.

The encore was introduced by Wayne telling of his sadness about the tragic suicide of Elliot Smith, a Superb artist who took his own life only a couple of weeks before. The set was finished by a peculiar version of White Christmas as we won't be seeing any more of the flaming lips this year (unless, like me, you were going to the Edinburgh gig the very next day). along with Michael Ivins throwing the confetti/paper snow all over the audience now drenched in the snow as well as thier own glee. All in all an absolutely unforgettable night.

Setlist:

  • Intro (Carmina Burana)
  • Race for the Prize
  • Seven Nation Army
  • Fight Test
  • The Gash
  • Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots part 1
  • Lightning Strikes the Postman
  • The Spark that Bled
  • The Golden Path
  • Happy Birthday
  • She Don't Use Jelly
  • In the Morning of the Magicians
  • Do You Realize??

Encore:

  • Waitin' For a Superman
  • A Spoonful Weighs a Ton
  • White Christmas

Rating: 10/10
Website: www.flaminglips.com

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