Late Night Tales is a musical series from Azuli Records that asks different artists to put together a compilation mix of music that they enjoy. It’s similar to back when you were growing up, some time between your early teens and mid-twenties, and you discovered a kid at school or maybe someone’s older brother who opened your musical world to all types of cool bands that you never knew existed. Not being comfortable with asking for half their music collection or spending a couple of days straight in their room, the easiest and quickest way to expand your horizons was to ask for them to make a mix tape or disc. If these cool kids were Wayne Coyne, Steven Drozd and Michael Ivins, better known as The Flaming Lips, then the latest edition of Late Night Tales is what they would have given you.
This music flows surprisingly well together considering the wide variety of artists. When I looked at the list, I had trouble imaging what the combination of jazz by the legendary Miles Davis, electronica by The Chemical Brothers, ‘80s alternative by Psychedelic Furs and ‘70s pop by 10cc, would sound like together, but then that’s why The Flaming Lips make music and I only listen to it. The set includes the rare cover of The White Stripes “Seven Nation Army” by The Flaming Lips although the lyrics are unrecognizable. The only misstep is the last track; an extremely odd spoken word piece by David Shrigley called “The Jist.”
The Lips’ Late Night Tales would be a great choice to be played at mellow parties where conversation is more important than alcohol when trying to connect with the opposite sex. If you strike out at the party, it would also be good for contemplating your missteps as you lay on your bed late at night under a black light.
If you know more than 75% of the artists on this album, your musical knowledge is vast. As with most albums and this one in particular, the best way to judge if you’d like it is to hear samples of the tracks, so I have placed a link to the Azuli Records site. Kudos go to them for being able to put this project together. The licensing agreements alone must have been a nightmare.