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Archive for the ‘Roger Corman’ Category

noseSOUNDTRACK: THE FLAMING LIPS-UFOs At the Zoo [DVD] (2007).

zooI’m not going to review the musical portion of the DVD per se…you can download the MP3s with the DVD, and I intend to give the music a good listen once I get it converted to CD.  So, this is a review of the movie itself (with comments about the music too, of course).

The movie is a concert film interspersed with interviews with Lips fans.  I’ve read that many people dislike the format of the film in which the band plays a few songs and then they cut away to the gushing fans.  In some ways, it is a bit annoying that you don’t get  the whole concert in one fell swoop.  But, you can always fast forward over the talky bits.  Someone suggested making that part a special feature, but would anyone watch it if they weren’t in it?  Well, maybe.  That said, with repeated watching, it’s probably not too much fun to hear the various punters say how much they love the Lips (although the behind the scenes parts stand up to repeated watching).

As for the rest of the set…the stage show is pretty amazing.  The set is designed to look like a UFO landing on stage which then turns into the lighting backdrop.  (And the behind the scenes on the construction of the UFO are funny and make it a little scary that people are actually inside of it. )

The concert is comprised mostly of “hits” from At War with the Mystics, Yoshimi and Bulletin.  Of course, they bust out “She Don’t Use Jelly” and the classic “Love Yer Brain (which sounds a lot better here than the on The Fearless Freaks).

What’s cool about the DVD is seeing how much fun Wayne and Steven seem to be having (Michael is always pretty stone-faced so it’s hard to know what he’s thinking).  Throughout the show, Wayne shoots rockets loaded with streamers and confetti out over the crowd in what seems cathartic and also lots of fun.  And if of course, it’s pretty amazing to watch Steven play all of the different instruments, seemingly at the same time.  When I saw the Lips they didn’t have a drummer, just a videotape of a drummer, so it’s nice to see the addition of Kliph on drums.

The only problem I had with the set, and I’ll be able to go into this more when I listen to the MP3s was that I found Wayne’s voice to be in pretty bad shape.  It seemed as if he was sick or had a sore throat.  I’ve always been amazed at Wayne’s voice, so i was surprised to hear it sounding less than wonderful.

One assumes he went on with the show even if he was sick because of the great opportunity to play an at home concert at the ampitheatre at the Oklahom Zoo.  My friend Abdallah, an Oklahoma native, says he has been to many concerts there and it’s a great venue.  So, if you’ll never get to see the Lips live, this is a decent substitute.

[READ: March 25, 2009] Be A Nose

This collection is a sampling of the sketch books that Spiegelman has been working on throughout his artistic life.  Struck by the usefulness of keeping a sketchbook, Spiegelman has attempted to do just that on several occasions.  Yet his notes indicate that he always fails to keep up with it.  Sometimes he just gives up, other times he decides it’s a waste of time.  This collection shows the three most complete sketchbooks that Spiegelman has ever kept. (more…)

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