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Staring at Sound: The True Story of Oklahoma's Fabulous Flaming Lips PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 31 August 2008 22:05

By Jim Derogatis, Broadway Press, 2006, in print

Review: Chicago rock journalist DeRogatis (Let It Blurt) chronicles the Flaming Lips' 23-year journey from local oddities to nationally famous stars. Formed in 1983 by charismatic front man Wayne Coyne, the Flaming Lips have enjoyed a career boasting almost all the hallmarks of the usual indie band, except they're not an indie band. They've released nearly all their work on a major label, Warner Brothers, and are one of the few bands of the 1990s to fulfill the terms of their contract.

Along the way there were many tense moments, lineup changes and struggles (for 10 years, Coyne would come off tour to work as a fry cook at Long John Silver's). More than two decades later, however, in a testament to their dedication and vision, the band has a platinum record under their belt.

Luckily for them and for their fans, they drew DeRogatis, one of the nation's best newspaper music critics, as a biographer. DeRogatis handles the story soberly yet intimately, without relating the usual tales of drug-fueled rock star excess, which the band has always eschewed. Although the book lacks some flair for that reason, fans will appreciate that the Flaming Lips have avoided cliche in their lives as they have in their music.

Publishers Weekly

Last Updated on Thursday, 17 September 2009 02:51