With the building already well packed, Mac Demarco opened the show with his signature funny meets sarcastic meets down to earth style. The LA singer/songwriter who just released his third album, This Old Dog, which is by far his most put together and serious album to date.
The 27 year old has always worn his talent in a nonchalant, happy go lucky way. But don’t be fooled by his humble charm because he is a brilliant musician that actually sounds focused and sings in languid, unadorned tones over trip, unique and out of the norm guitar riffs.
He last visited the Twin Cities 4 years ago and he made sure to make up for not coming back sooner. The crowd enthusiastically sang along all set but he was able to display both of his styles (off the wall/weird/unique) during the song Salad Days and serious/grown up during My Kind Of Woman as he told jokes and swigged sips from a can of Miller Lite in between songs during his terrific set that included a brief mix of covers by Led Zeppelin (Stairway To Heaven) Red Hot Chili Peppers (Californiacation) and Vanessa Carlton (1,000 Miles). He ended his set by kissing all of his band members followed by stage diving and crowd surfing with his socks off.
The Twin Cities have been fortunate enough to see The Flaming Lips five times over the last four years including the three First Avenue appearances as promised by front man, Wayne Coyne in 2014 and early 2015. Followed by the headlining performance at Rock the Garden 2016 to tonight’s “There Should Be Unicorns” tour performance. Witnessing a Flaming Lips show in person is honestly a one of a kind and incredible experience that gets better and better each time they come to town. Fresh off of releasing their 14th studio album, Oczy Mlody, an album that has sort of reinvented the bands sound while mixing in the usual psychedelic twists.
On Sunday night, The Flaming Lips didn’t waste any time displaying their amazing stage presence. With his signature thick, grey coifs of hair and salt and pepper scruff, the ruggedly handsome, Coyne who was decked out in trousers and a red jacket grabbed the mic, pumped his fists and got the sold out crowd going by saying “come on, come on, come on.” He then marched a few steps as Steven Drozd, Mike Ivins and the rest of the band went straight into playing Race for the Prize, sending the place into a visual orgasm of canons shooting a mixture of paper and mylar confetti, smoke, a huge mirror ball that shot rays of light everywhere, giant balloons flying over head, lasers and thousands of bright rope lights that hung from the top of the stage.
Two giant mushrooms that held a place on the floor in the lower level of the crowd and one positioned in the upper level of the venue. Everything went dark for a few moments before the house lights focused back onto Wayne who appeared on a riser above the middle of the crowd where he battled a giant inflatable pink robot while performing the fan favorite Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Part 1. He then disappeared down through an opening under the pink robot as the lights went dark once again. The band started the intro to There Should Be Unicorns. Coyne snuck through the crowd and reappeared wearing a set of rainbow wings riding atop a unicorn with a rainbow colored mane and draped in rope lights as he road the perimeter of the lower level performing the song. Steven Drozd then took a moment to dedicate the bands awesome performance of Pompeii Am Götterdämmerung to Grant Hart of Hüsker Dü. The and also played a stellar cover of David Bowie’s Space Oddity and Wayne still managed to get inside of his giant hamster ball. Wayne told the crowd that there is a lot of bad in the world at this time and that is why it’s so important to come out to a show and enjoy the brief time away from reality. The band finished with their biggest hit Do You Realize under a giant inflatable rainbow.
Race for the Prize
Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, Pt. 1
There Should Be Unicorns
Pompeii Am Götterdämmerung
The Yeah Yeah Yeah Song (With All Your Power)
Space Oddity (David Bowie cover)
Are You a Hypnotist??
A Spoonful Weighs a Ton
She Don’t Use Jelly
Do You Realize??
All photos by Tommy Allen Williams
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