PICS: The Flaming Lips at the Observatory

The Flaming Lips brought the self-proclaimed "world's greatest acid punch party" through the Observatory North Park on May 7.

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Alex Matthews
Let's be clear: There's literally nothing else on the planet quite like a Flaming Lips show -- and if you missed it, you messed up big time.
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Alex Matthews
As you can see, the band comes to party -- and everyone there is invited.
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As we've come to expect, they brought out their signature inflatable bubble that lead singer/frontman Wayne Coyne uses to traverse the crowd!
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Alex Matthews
Balloons, confetti, streamers, outlandish costumes, dancers, big plastic bubbles -- anything and everything is fair game at a Flaming Lips show.
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Alex Matthews
The band got their start in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma way back in 1983. Strangely enough, Wayne's brother -- Mark Coyne -- originally sang lead vocals for the group until he departed the group in '84 and Wayne took over.
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In 1990, the band caught the attention of Warner Bros. Records and were signed promptly after a representative of the label reportedly witnessed a show at which the band almost burned down the venue (American Legion Hall in Norman, Oklahoma) with the use of pyrotechnics. Sounds about right.
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They got their first big mainstream breakthrough in 1993 when their song "She Don't Use Jelly" became a big hit and was featured heavily in various television shows. Massive critical acclaim, however, came in 1999 with their first studio masterpiece, "Soft Bulletin."
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That album has been lauded as the band's "Pet Sounds." The group followed it in 2002 with the commercial *and* critical success "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots" -- which would go on to win the band a Grammy Award for Best Rock Instrumental Performance, and eventually become the basis for a Broadway musical.
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Alex Matthews
Fun fact: In 2001, the band began work on an indie film project named "Christmas On Mars," which they finished filming in 2005. In 2008, after seven years in production, it was finally released to the public.
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In March 2009, the band's song "Do You Realize??" (off "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots") was announced as the official rock song of Oklahoma. Ten choices were put to a public vote, and out of 21,000 votes cast, nearly 51 percent were for the band's song.
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On January 13, 2017, the 14th Flaming Lips album "Oczy Mlody" was released, and featured a guest appearance by Miley Cyrus.
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The band's May 7 show featured the following set list: "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)", "What Is the Light?," "The Observer," "How??," and "Space Oddity" -- a David Bowie cover. (Drummer Matt Duckworth pictured)
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That was followed by: "Feeling Yourself Disintegrate," "The Castle," "Are You a Hypnotist??," "The W.A.N.D.," and "A Spoonful Weighs a Ton." (Pictured l-r: Duckworth, guitarist Jake Ingalls, and bassist Michael Ivins).
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Their first encore consisted of "Virgo Self-Esteem Broadcast," "Silver Trembling Hands," and "She Don't Use Jelly." Afterward, the band returned for a second encore -- one final song -- the appropriately wonderful "Do You Realize??" A feeling of euphoria filled the room. And just like that, we were left waiting for the Flaming Lips to return to San Diego again.
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