6 April 2013

Frank Zappa - Apostrophe (')

Two Zappa blog in one night! You guys must feel loved. ;-)  This is the 18th album by Frank Zappa and was released in 1974.  In America it is his highest placed album in the Billboard charts and had the first single that made the charts as well. Now the charts were not the 'be all and end all' of Zappa's career, if it was I don't think he would have made it to album 18 (and he would not be allowed to do that these days).  This album rattles past in just over 30 minutes and the first half is loosely based on a dream that Mr Zappa had when he was an Eskimo called Nanook.  The open song is called "Don't Eat The Yellow Snow" and is going on about the error that will be caused by eating snow where the husky go.  This is only the beginning of the madness.....

As Zappa albums go, it is one of the more accessible and (let's say this in a hushed whispered tone) almost straight forward.  The title track is just one of those moments which just show what Zappa does best. Taking a riff and just going with it, the solo is beyond faultless (I know it makes no sense, but bear with me) and also features Jack Bruce from Cream. Also, for a Zappa album all the songs are relatively short, with only the title track going over 5 minutes.  This album also contains the gems that are "Cosmik Debris", "St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast" and "Stink-feet".  If there are any faults I can take from this, they number two.  Firstly, I wish there was more on the album, but that is just me wanting more than I've been given and I am slightly greedy here.  The other is that if your not into the comedy aspect of Mr Zappa's catalogue then this will be one to avoid.

The whole thing whilst not being an out and out comedy album like Weird Al Yankovic or Bob Rivers, it is very satirical and has the tongue so firmly logged into his cheek that it is tasting the food in other people's mouths if they get too close.  But for me, this is not a problem.  I find this album a fantastic part of Zappa's hugely wild 70's output.  A essential part for everyone's Zappa collection, maybe not one to start with straight away but one that should be listened to and enjoyed.

8 out of ten - Oh, now you have my attention and maybe my money, time and heart

You can purchase from here

You can listen to it on Spotify here

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