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Frank Zappa - Freak Out! CD (album) cover

FREAK OUT!

Frank Zappa

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.88 | 432 ratings

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Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer
4 stars I've tried Zappa's jazz fusion period and his comedic mid-70's period, yet I have not found an album that I can attach myself to. For a long time, I thought that this Mothers of Invention album would do the trick. As of now, this still hasn't filled the ''Zappa-made-a-masterpiece'' void although in my initial impression of FREAK OUT! was just that.

There's an hour's worth of material here; it's a cakewalk to fit all of it on one CD, but in the vinyl days, it needed to be a double (unless you're Todd Rundgren). As a double, each vinyl seems to have been dedicated to one facet of the Mothers sound (I say ''seems to have been'' because I wasn't around when this was released; I don't even think my mom was potty trained at the time). On the first vinyl were the stabs and spoofs of mid-60's pop culture including the music produced at the time. The humour here sounds pretty dated although the occasional random yelling makes me laugh.

The real treat is what appeared on the original second vinyl. It starts with ''Trouble Every Day'', a blues-rock kind of jam over Frank complaining about the TV society at the time. The fun really starts on the ''Help, I'm a Rock!'' thing where the nonsensical ramblings are rather hilarious (because of the randomness) laid over one of the most solid grooves on the album. It's followed by ''It Can't Happen Here'' which is mostly contained by out-of-tune vocal acapella stuff. The last number really takes the avant in another direction; all the epic contains are two different drum beats, screams, yells, ramblings and sped-up voices. Definitely of an acquired taste.

Mostly rewarding for the second half, but some of the humourous stuff like ''Hungry Freaks Daddy'', ''Wowie Zowie'', ''Who Are the Brain Police'' and ''You're Probably Wondering Why I'm Here'' are worth a listen for the occasional laugh. Probably my favourite Zappa/Mothers I've heard thus far. Nice if you don't mind humour and random shouting in your music.

Sinusoid | 4/5 |

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