Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots is a glorious achievement for The Flaming Lips. As they progressed through their music career, they began to experiment with their albums more and more. This is something that, in my opinion, led to their newest album’s downfall. But I digress.
Yoshimi is a very loose concept album. I say this because there are only four tracks on this record that tell a story, based on the title. The rest of the songs are completely unrelated to the first four, which is something that is very interesting, considering that most concept albums tell some sort of story to the listener. (Ex. Green Day’s American Idiot. ) Even so, this is a very impressive effort from The Flaming Lips, and it showcases their unique (and beautifully weird) musical talents.
The first tune, Fight Test, depicts the female protagonist, Yoshimi, later described as “a black belt in karate”, battling against a dangerous foe to prepare herself for the Pink Robots. What follows is some incredible instrumentation, and the lead singer delivers line after line of strange, yet powerful lyrics.
The second song, One More Robot / Sympathy 3000-21, is one that I found to be really intriguing and thought-provoking at the same time. It tells of a robot that is learning how to show emotions; how to be more than a machine. It is easily one of my favorites on this album, mainly because of the lyrics.
Now, I simply must mention Parts 1 and 2 of Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots. They are both highly enjoyable, but personally, I like Part 2 much more. It features some cosmic-sounding instrumentals, and in between, there are several moments of inhuman screeching. It is truly bizarre, but I found it to be all that much more appealing because of it.
My favorite tune would have to be All We Have is Now, which is truly a somber lyrical tale about a time-traveler that falls in love with someone, but then feels a heavy sense of regret for getting so close, because he knows that something bad will happen to them in the near future. That would clearly explain the title of the song. I just love how Wayne Coyne’s voice sounds through-out the whole thing. It’s honestly one of the best aspects of it, and it makes it that much more powerful.
All in all, Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots is quite an enjoyable album, thanks to The Flaming Lips’ ridiculously odd instrumentation choices and impressive lyrical content. Check this one out, if you haven’t already.