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Frank Zappa - Lumpy Gravy CD (album) cover


Frank Zappa



3.22 | 365 ratings

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3 stars Zappa decided to create Lumpy Gravy becaus ehe really wanted to be a freaky composer, known for his compositions. He didn't want to be known as a rock musician, but he wanted to freak out as much people as he could.

Zappa recruited a decent orchestra to do his bidding, the Abnuceals Emukkha Electric Smphony Orchestra. Frank freaked the hell out of these guys and made them play the very first editions of King Kong, Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance, and the best presented, Oh No. The bad part is, most of the compositions don't get to shine because there is only a bit of each composition sandwiched between the conceptual dialogue of the community inside the piano talking metaphorically about how the "other" musicians go about making their music, and how people act outisde of the piano. Frank couldn't help but to inject a hilarious (Louie the Turkey's laugh!) and truthful message into this project. The record can be unapproachable for some, well, maybe most. A lot of the experimentation on this album is pure sound collage or just dialogue that probably only Frank and some of the Mothers' know the story behind.

So all in all, it's a production masterpiece, a taste of some beautiful composition, pioneering in new musical sounds, one of the first uses of an orchestra mainly in rock. The album gets the score it does because it's mostly meandering and unattractive due to the unpredictable injections of the dialogue and the seemingly ill-timed compositions and effects that don't seem right. The lack of structure is intriguing of course, but it doesn't make for a masterpiece in this case. Frank would go on to create a smashing version/sequel/prequel(???) of this album (note the we're only in it for the money reference) in the next album where everything is done right.

Retrovertigo | 3/5 |


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