The W.A.N.D. (The Will Always Negates Defeat)

Album: At War With The Mystics (2006)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • The first single from The Flaming Lips' 11th studio album finds the experimental psychedelic rockers battling evil with a magical wand. "The idea of a magic wand and magic powers occurred to me while watching a homeless guy in Oklahoma City," Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne explained in a press release. "He was, I believe, Vietnamese, and had a cool looking wizardly beard and mustache and he carried a long stick, which he used as a kind of cane-weapon. And one day I saw him fighting an 'imagined' enemy and the long stick became (as best I could tell) a kind of magic wand that made his invisible foe retreat. I mean... it seemed to give him a confidence that allowed him to defeat his hallucinations, and at first I thought 'how sad, he believes this old stick is saving him,' but the more I thought about it, the more I envied him in a way - for the evil manifestations of his mind he invented a sparkling sorcerer's baton to lead his psychic revolution... yes!"

    He continued: "And so we delved into a kind of radical protest rock mentality. We sing, 'We got the power now, motherf--kers, that's where it belongs,' but I believe it's cosmically empowering - not actually empowering. In the song, we rail against the greedy, corrupt evil beings who are in control and trying to enslave us. But our rebellion is simply to fight back - we have no solutions."
  • Before delving into a fantasy land of evil sorcerers and supernatural weapons, the band started with a studio jam. Wayne explained: "I was playing electric guitar, Michael [Ivins] was on fuzzwah bass and Steven [Drozd] was on the drumkit and we stumbled upon this druggy prog-rock riff and stuttery, funky beat. It was like Black Sabbath getting mashed up with Sly & the Family Stone or Stevie Wonder, and it sent us off in a wonderful new direction."

Comments

Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Michelle Branch

Michelle BranchSongwriter Interviews

Michelle Branch talks about "Everywhere," "The Game Of Love," and her run-in with a Christian broadcasting network.

Steve Morse of Deep Purple

Steve Morse of Deep PurpleSongwriter Interviews

Deep Purple's guitarist since 1994, Steve talks about writing songs with the band and how he puts his own spin on "Smoke On The Water."

Adam Duritz of Counting Crows

Adam Duritz of Counting CrowsSongwriter Interviews

"Mr. Jones" took on new meaning when the song about a misguided view of fame made Adam famous.

Ian Anderson: "The delight in making music is that you don't have a formula"

Ian Anderson: "The delight in making music is that you don't have a formula"Songwriter Interviews

Ian talks about his 3 or 4 blatant attempts to write a pop song, and also the ones he most connected with, including "Locomotive Breath."

Jello Biafra

Jello BiafraSongwriter Interviews

The former Dead Kennedys frontman on the past, present and future of the band, what music makes us "pliant and stupid," and what he learned from Alice Cooper.

Barry Dean ("Pontoon," "Diamond Rings And Old Barstools")

Barry Dean ("Pontoon," "Diamond Rings And Old Barstools")Songwriter Interviews

A top country songwriter, Barry talks about writing hits for Little Big Town, Tim McGraw and Jason Aldean.