Thursday 25 April 2013

Review of "The Terror" by The Flaming Lips

Psychedelic rock band, The Flaming Lips, have always had experimental tendencies. But this album sees them venturing onto a whole new plain of reality. 

Living up to its name, the group's latest instalment is a harrowing acid trip blending together haunting synths, reverb-soaked vocals, scratchy guitar chords, overmodulated kick drums and a plethora of bizarre electronic noises. Is that the sound of a printer jamming on the first track? What are all those sinister voices saying in the background of the self-titled track "The Terror"?

I've encountered a lot of artists that try to be creepily trippy. Psychedelic 70s band, Suicide, made it their forte and many bands since have endeavoured to take things one step further and failed, including Radiohead on their last release, The King of Limbs. The Flaming Lips have finally raised the bar - this is the stuff nightmares are made of. There is a feeling that one is suspended in time whilst listening to these songs - the result of skilfully fluid-like production and layering that casts the listener into a dream-like state. Sounds are left to float in the air. Tracks drift in and out of one another. Nothing is solid except for the cold and lurid atmosphere. Only the vocals offer any human element and these are so drenched in reverb that they feel distant and unreachable. If you're looking for a legal high, look no further than this LP. Just don't listen to it right before you go to bed.