The Flaming Lips - Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots (Warner)
release date: January 13 2003
If you haven't gotten round to hearing the album of the same title yet, this is your chance to catch up with the standard-bearers of concept record loveliness.
The album was all about a young Japanese girl's battles against machines and, considering that The Flaming Lips come from Oklahoma, the paradox is at least interesting. But when such a concept is married to warm, friendly vocals from Wayne Coyle and eccentric parps and bloops from vocoders and synths in the background, and a chorus that'll just refuse to leave your psyche, this is nothing more nor less than sheer class.
A swathe of B-sides, every one of them as good, make this an essential purchase - even if you had the foresight to get hold of the album. And one of these is a huge, swooshing indie-orchestral cover of Kylie's Cant Get You Out Of My Head. Honest.