The Flaming Lips

The Day Andy Gibb Died

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Years before authorized reissues like The Punk Rockers Are Taking Acid began making sense of the Flips' convoluted back catalog, obsessive fans were forced to rely on bootlegs like The Day Andy Gibb Died to score the band's rarest material--a generous 74 minute helping of goodness limited to just 500 copies, it lacks much in terms of fidelity and context, but compensates with the sheer depth and reach of its material. The first "track"--actually a seven-song, 35-minute live set taped in Norman, OK in late 1990--is almost unlistenable due to its poor recording quality; the mix is so trebly, it's impossible to hear Michael Ivins' bass. Instead skip ahead to the rare and unreleased studio tracks that follow--again, the sound isn't great (the cracks and pops generated by the vinyl source material are painfully evident) and recording information is non-existent, but it's worth it just to hear the Lips cutting loose on a series of covers like the Sonics' "Strychnine," Led Zeppelin's "Thank You," Pink Floyd's "Brain Damage," David Bowie's "Life on Mars?" and others embedded in the band's DNA.