The Flaming Lips Royal Athletic Park, Victoria, BC, September 14
Published Sep 15, 2012The Flaming Lips have a way of dividing a festival crowd: either you're going to enjoy their blissed-out psychedelia or hightail it for the nearest watering hole. Judging by the sheer number of folks adorned with 3D glasses (a integral part of any Lips laser show) that hung around for their 90-minute headlining set on day two of Rifflandia, the dividing line wasn't as clear cut. Unfortunately for fans of their more electric material, Wayne Coyne and company stuck to their melodic, atmospheric side, resulting in a set that kept building momentum, but then fizzled out before it could pop off. Sure, Coyne ran around on top of the crowd in the inflated beach ball thing (surprise!) and there were giant balloons, lasers and big-screen visuals, but where was the power and the punch and the pizzaz? Instead, we got a 90-minute zone-out, which is cool if that's your bag. As doofus as it sounds, after all of that delicate thunder, I just wanted to hear "She Don't Use Jelly." Which they did not play.