The Flaming Lips have gone through the mill, but Wayne Coyne has always been its guiding star. Now he calls on a slew of friends for new album The Flaming Lips And Heady Fwends. Lead single “Ashes in the Air” with Bon Iver is their first release.
The new record is notable because it will be released on vinyl on Record Store Day (Apr. 21) and because more than a dozen artists collaborate on the double LP set.
Coyne, 51, records with Ke$ha, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Prefuse 73, Tame Impala, Jim James, Nick Cave, Lightning Bolt, Yoko Ono, Neon Indian, Erykah Badu, New Fumes and Coldplay.
The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends Track List
1. 2012 (featuring Ke$ha and Biz Markie)
2. Ashes In The Air (featuring Bon Iver)
3. Helping The Retarded To Know God (featuring Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros)
1. Supermoon Made Me Want To Pee (featuring Prefuse 73)
2. Children Of The Moon (featuring Tame Impala)
3. That Ain’t My Trip (featuring Jim James of My Morning Jacket)
4. You, Man? Human? (featuring Nick Cave)
1. I’m Working At NASA On Acid (featuring Lightning Bolt)
2. Do It! (featuring Yoko Ono)
3. Is David Bowie Dying? (featuring Neon Indian)
1. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (featuring Erykah Badu)
2. Thunder Drops (featuring New Fumes)
3. I Don’t Want You To Die (featuring Chris Martin of Coldplay)
Bon Iver, aka Justin Vernon, Michael Noyce, Sean Carey and Matthew McCaughan, just won Grammys for best new artist and best alternative album. The step outside their folk music roots and step into the Lips’ psychedelic, space rock arrangement for “Ashes.”
“You and me
We thought we were so smart
We thought we could outrun them
But they had robot dogs.”
Even though Coyne and bass player Michael Ivins have been the only regular band members, the Lips have maintained a consistent experimental style. The song is pretty much classic Lips: hypnotic, carefully manipulated beats, booming drums and cymbals and philosophical lyrics.
Coyne tweeted details about the band’s new collaborative double LP, and revealed that he’s been collecting blood samples from his collaborators, which are stored in his refrigerator. God knows, what for.
“What I’m going to try to do, and I’m collecting stuff for it as we speak, is I’m going to try to make a record that has every person’s blood in the record,” Coyne told MTV.
“I don’t have everybody’s blood just yet, but I collected quite a few vials of blood, and it’s actually sitting in my refrigerator as we speak. I’m going to try to take that same concept and put little bits of everybody’s blood in the middle of this record, like a glass specimen thing.”
Coyne seems to have a long-standing fascination with blood. In 2010, he used his own blood in a printed copy of Flaming Lips poster.
The album will be released on vinyl on April 21.