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Frank Zappa - The Grand Wazoo CD (album) cover


Frank Zappa



4.31 | 865 ratings

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3 stars I'm going to travel against the tide here. I found this very similar in style to HOT RATS, yet more disappointing in its execution. Like HOT RATS, THE GRAND WAZOO focuses more on lengthy, jazzy instrumental passages as opposed to lyrical humour. Much of the album attempts to be serious in its delivery, but it falls flat on some occasions.

Without a doubt, the focus is on the 13+ minute title track; it doesn't take long before the brass section really hits you in the face, undoubtedly the most noticeable part of the track. The brass simply bellows, flourishes and squibbles all under a pumping rhythm. My only beef is that the track goes on a bit too long for my sake; there seems to be a dead spot in the middle.

When the songs have energy, they're fantastic. ''Cletus Awreetus-Awrightus'' is a zany, cartoony thing with rather silly vocal passages that are simply delightful. And to follow that up, the almost rocking ''Eat That Question'' contains excellent electric piano and guitar solos.

The downside is that there are two lazy numbers that I simply cannot listen to without dozing off, ''For Calvin'' and ''Blessed Relief''. Both are terribly lazy in instrumentation and just don't do anything at all (at least for me).

Why I don't have patience with some of the album is beyond me. There are more brilliant moments on THE GRAND WAZOO than terrible ones, but it has too many dead spots for me to recommend this.

Sinusoid | 3/5 |


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