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Day They Shot a Hole in the Jesus Egg: 1989-1991
     

The Day They Shot a Hole in the Jesus Egg: 1989-1991

by The Flaming Lips
 
This two-disc collection, a companion piece to the box set Finally, the Punk Rockers Are Taking Acid: 1983-1988, covers just three years in the life of America's most joyfully perplexing noisemakers, but the sonic sprawl captured herein seems to span light-years. Jesus Egg is primarily

Overview

This two-disc collection, a companion piece to the box set Finally, the Punk Rockers Are Taking Acid: 1983-1988, covers just three years in the life of America's most joyfully perplexing noisemakers, but the sonic sprawl captured herein seems to span light-years. Jesus Egg is primarily composed of demos and outtakes that radiate from the band's still-enthralling 1990 album In a Priest Driven Ambulance. That disc, presented here in its entirety, was peppered with Wayne Coyne's spiritual spelunkings, such as "The Jesus Songs." Swirling paeans like "Shine on Sweet Jesus" and "God Walks Among Us Now" rub up against (and bounce madly off) open-ended soundscapes like "Five Stop Mother Superior Rain." The core band is supplemented here by Mercury Rev's Jonathan Donohue, who pushes Coyne even further into sonic excess than he might've gone on his own. For good measure, the long-lost Unconsciously Screamin' EP, highlighted by "Lucifer Rising," is tagged on to Disc 1, as is a straightforward medley of the Sonics' "Strychnine" and Elvis Costello's "Peace Love and Understanding." Much of the set's second disc is given over to alternate versions of the Priest Driven Ambulance songs -- versions that, for the most part, are significant departures. Beyond that, the material (some of which has been bootlegged under the appropriate title The Mushroom Tapes) is as fascinatingly dense as anything in the Lips' catalogue -- particularly "God's a Wheeler-Dealer" and "I Want to Kill My Brother, the Cymbal Head." All of the previously released material has been remastered, and the set includes new artwork and extensive liner notes by frontman Wayne Coyne.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - John Bush
Nothing proves a band's ambitions, or probes its emotions (or both) quite like a concept album. So, after adding guitarist Jonathan Donahue and enlisting producer Dave Fridmann, the Flaming Lips focused on Wayne Coyne's ongoing quest for metaphysical enlightenment to record their first great album, In a Priest Driven Ambulance. The contributions of Donahue and Fridmann were immediately apparent, the duo appearing simultaneously as supremely fitting voices to frame Coyne's brilliantly shambling lyrics and sun-scorched delivery. The songs improved as well, ranging from the freak-out epic "Unconsciously Screamin'" to the pummeling "God Walks Among Us Now" to a late-night acoustic ballad like "There You Are," and, for the closer, an irony-free cover of the optimist's anthem "(What A) Wonderful World." The Day They Shot a Hole in the Jesus Egg, a two-disc set of Flaming Lips recordings from 1989 to 1991, reissues the complete In a Priest Driven Ambulance and adds (in effect) 23 bonus tracks -- comprising B-sides (from the singles "Drug Machine" and "Unconsciously Screamin'") plus a collection of four-track demos often bootlegged as The Mushroom Tapes. Of the extra material, the B-sides are best, especially a pair of covers: one of the Sonics' sullen garage nugget "Strychnine" and the other of Elvis Costello's "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding." Most of the demos add little to the released versions, one exception being a nice new guitar line on a version of "Unconsciously Screamin'." The demos of previously unreleased songs fare a little better, including the bizarre, stream-of-consciousness jams "God's a Wheeler Dealer" and "Agonizing," with both Coyne (on vocals) and Donahue (on guitar) apparently improvising their lines to hilarious effect. Elsewhere, "I Want to Kill My Brother; The Cymbal Head" begins with some furious strumming (straight out of the Who's "Pinball Wizard"), but never really becomes a song. As long as listeners never succumb to exhaustion from working their way through extra material that more than triples the running time of the original LP, The Day They Shot a Hole in the Jesus Egg ably demonstrates the genesis of the Flaming Lips as rock & roll saviors.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/01/2002
Label:
Restless Records
UPC:
0018777376525
catalogNumber:
73765

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