Flaming Lips\' Zaireeka

    Released in October 1997, the "Flaming Lips' Zaireeka" was met with some critical praise and more general puzzlement. The album comes as four separate CDs intended for playback at the same time. Which means, of course, that four CD players are required. And four amps. And eight speakers. And at least four sets of hands to make them all go. "Zaireeka" requires several people to get together for the express purpose of listening to music; there's nothing to dance to and nothing to look at. It's almost quaint, really. There was a time when people sat together to listen to records; and, "Zaireeka" celebrates this disappearing moment. It is, in other words, an album that does away with the very thing that caused recorded music become a phenomenon so quickly in the 1920s and helped it stay that way ever since: it is not convenient. Ten years later, convenience continues to drive the music business from the top-down and the listening experience from the bottom up. Digital music has become divorced from physical reality; with an MP3 file played on devices using flash ROM, the whole thing happens without a single moving part. Headphones, the sound delivery technology most in favor, blur the borders between device and listener, all in complete isolation. We're shoving the speakers into our ear canals; the music is literally inside of us even before it's left the wire. And so, the human experience of music in the developed world is proceeding along two parallel lines: we're either retreating into a private world of solitary consumption, or we hear music in the background, in coffee shops or on commercials, where it is ambience, part of an environment. Which is part of what makes "Zaireeka" even more fascinating now than it was at the time of release. In addition to being a fantastic album of imaginative psychedelic pop and arguably the Flaming Lips' masterpiece, it was first the final shot fired in the struggle for the rock album to maintain the centrality it had enjoyed since the late 1960s. It defies segmentation. The effort it takes to hear the record properly ensures that the music will be listened to carefully. It's music that even the interested will experience only a few times in their lives; it involves hard work. So listening to "Zaireeka" is a rare event, and it's also a social experience.

    View more

    Number of Pages: 144
    Format(s): Paperback - ISBN: 9780826429018
    Publication Date:
    Listed in: Rock & Pop music
    Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd.

    Paperback

    RRP: £9.99

    Sale Price: £8.45

    Save: £1.54 per copy!

    Side-Banner-Right-188px-fd.jpg
    Books TV & Movies

    You might also like...

    Latest from the blog

    Fantastic new recipe book from Sabrina Ghayour 'Sirocco'

    Sabrina Ghayour's long awaited second recipe book Sirocco is out this month and is a great follow up to Persianna. Read article

    Ten Great Bedtime Reads from The Great British Bookshop and Aspace

    We have teamed up with Aspace (www.aspace.co.uk) who create beautiful room for Children to bring you 10 great bedtime reads for your little ones. Read article

    Latest from Twitter

    • @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      Lottery funding for dementia reading project £2m pledged for Reading Agency scheme to pair readers with dementia sufferers

      @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has held on to the number one spot for a sixth week #HarryPotter #CursedChild @littlebrown @pottermore

    • @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      @thebookseller @MartinaCole @Jeffrey_Archer @Foyles

      @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      Frith wins inaugural Klaus Flugge Prize for illustration t.co/U9P08h4XMG

    • @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      RT @Gue_de_Bost: #Dordogneholidaycottage available Sept tweet to book for more info

      @TheGBBookshop - 3 years ago

      The editor is just back from france @HomeAwayUK! t.co/IWutTER1x7