The Soft Bulletin [UK]

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Jon Dolan
Oklahoma's cloud-hopping psychedelic rockers the Flaming Lips have done some amazing things in their lengthy career -- from performing one of the weirdest alt-rock hits of all time 1993's "She Don't Use Jelly" on "Beverly Hills 90120" to recording a four-disc set meant to be played all at the same time. But nothing they've done to date will amaze fans old and new like this symphonic, classic-rock love letter to life itself. From the first sweeping, string-soaked notes of "Race for the Prize Remix" to the moment later on the album when singer Wayne Coyne yelps, "I stood up and I said, 'yeah!' " this is one of the most angelically uplifting psych-rock records of the decade ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Jon Dolan
Oklahoma's cloud-hopping psychedelic rockers the Flaming Lips have done some amazing things in their lengthy career -- from performing one of the weirdest alt-rock hits of all time 1993's "She Don't Use Jelly" on "Beverly Hills 90120" to recording a four-disc set meant to be played all at the same time. But nothing they've done to date will amaze fans old and new like this symphonic, classic-rock love letter to life itself. From the first sweeping, string-soaked notes of "Race for the Prize Remix" to the moment later on the album when singer Wayne Coyne yelps, "I stood up and I said, 'yeah!' " this is one of the most angelically uplifting psych-rock records of the decade -- a PET SOUNDS for the year 2000. Coyne's dappled lyrics of self-discovery are a better emotional tonic than a year of high-priced therapy, and when drummer Steven Drozd careens in behind him with snare slaps as big as the whole outdoors, you'll feel as if you'll never have a care again. Like a cross between Lynyrd Skynyrd's southern rock and the spaced-out musings of Mercury Rev, songs like the massively rocking "Buggin' Remix," the melancholically pretty "Superman," and the subtle, funky "Suddenly Everything Has Changed" are like little escape hatches to a world of endless reverie.
All Music Guide - Jason Ankeny
So where does a band go after releasing the most defiantly experimental record of its career? If you're the Flaming Lips, you keep rushing headlong into the unknown -- The Soft Bulletin, their follow-up to the four-disc gambit Zaireeka, is in many ways their most daring work yet, a plaintively emotional, lushly symphonic pop masterpiece eons removed from the mind-warping noise of their past efforts. Though more conventional in concept and scope than Zaireeka, The Soft Bulletin clearly reflects its predecessor's expansive sonic palette. Its multidimensional sound is positively celestial, a shape-shifting pastiche of blissful melodies, heavenly harmonies, and orchestral flourishes; but for all its headphone-friendly innovations, the music is still amazingly accessible, never sacrificing popcraft in the name of radical experimentation. Its aims are so perversely commercial, in fact, that hit R&B remixer Peter Mokran tinkered with the cuts "Race for the Prize" and "Waitin' for a Superman" in the hopes of earning mainstream radio attention. But what's most remarkable about The Soft Bulletin is its humanity -- these are Wayne Coyne's most personal and deeply felt songs, as well as the warmest and most giving. No longer hiding behind surreal vignettes about Jesus, zoo animals, and outer space, Coyne pours his heart and soul into each one of these tracks, poignantly exploring love, loss, and the fate of all mankind; highlights like "The Spiderbite Song" and "Feeling Yourself Disintegrate" are so nakedly emotional and transcendentally spiritual that it's impossible not to be moved by their beauty. There's no telling where the Lips will go from here, but it's almost beside the point -- not just the best album of 1999, The Soft Bulletin might be the best record of the entire decade. [A U.K. version was also released.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/22/1999
  • Label: Warner Bros / Wea
  • UPC: 093624687641
  • Catalog Number: 46876

Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Flaming Lips Primary Artist
Michael Ivins Bass, Group Member
Wayne Coyne Guitar, Vocals, Group Member
Steven Drozd Drums, Group Member
Scott Bennett Bass
Technical Credits
The Flaming Lips Producer, Engineer, Engineering
Dave Fridmann Producer, Engineer, Engineering
Peter Mokran Production Collaborator, Additional Production
Scott Booker Producer
George Salisbury Layout
Lawrence Schiller Cover Photo
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    Posted April 21, 2009

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