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Frank Zappa - Francesco Zappa CD (album) cover


Frank Zappa



2.57 | 126 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Presented here as an unearthing of music from the (fictitious) 18th century composer "Francesco ZAPPA", these keyboard works answer the musical question: What would Domenico Scarlatti have sounded like if he'd been given a Casiotone for Christmas? The transition from rock to rococo is likely to be too abrupt for any but the most dedicated ZAPPA fans. Previous "classical" forays from FRANK ZAPPA have incorporated elements of humor and iconoclasm that fans could relate to, but "Francesco ZAPPA" is by-the-books keyboard music, weird only insofar as it lacks any trace of weirdness. For my money, this is the dullest album in ZAPPAdom, a curio for the desperately curious. The fact is, any number of "real" classical composers -- Vivaldi, Alessandro and Domenico Scarlatti, Georg Handel -- have produced similar works with real merit. FRANK ZAPPA adds nothing to their existing body of work, content for the moment to replicate their talent on some small scale. The music, orchestrated by the composer, aided by Synclavier wrangler David Ocker and performed by the Barking Pumpkin Digital Gratification Consort (worth a chuckle), is no more than a light collection of piano pieces recorded on the Synclavier with all the warmth and charm of a block of ice. It's ironic that something this staid would represent a radical departure for the composer, but that's the enigmatic ZAPPA for you.
daveconn | 2/5 |


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