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Naked City


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Naked City Grand Guignol album cover
4.12 | 53 ratings | 4 reviews | 34% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1992

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Grand Guignol (17:40)
2. La Cathédrale Engloutie (6:24)
3. Three Preludes Op. 74: Douloureus, Déchirant (1:17)
4. Three Preludes Op. 74: Très Lent, Contemplatif (1:42)
5. Three Preludes Op. 74: Allegro Drammatico (:48)
6. Prophetiae Sybillarum (1:46)
7. The Cage (2:00)
8. Louange Á l'Éternité de Jésus (7:07)
9. Blood Is Thin (1:00)
10. Thrash Jazz Assassin (:45)
11. Dead Spot (:31)
12. Bonehead (:51)
13. Piledriver (:33)
14. Shangkuan Ling-Feng (1:14)
15. Numbskull (:29)
16. Perfume of a Critic's Burning Flesh (:24)
17. Jazz Snob Eat Shit (:24)
18. The Prestidigitator (:43)
19. No Reason to Believe (:26)
20. Hellraiser (:39)
21. Torture Garden (:35)
22. Slan (:23)
23. The Ways of Pain (:31)
24. The Noose (:10)
25. Sack of Shit (:43)
26. Blunt Instrument (:53)
27. Osaka Bondage (1:14)
28. Shallow Grave (:40)
29. Kaoru (:50)
30. Dead Dread (:45)
31. Billy Liar (:10)
32. Victims of Torture (:20)
33. Speedfreaks (:48)
34. New Jersey Scum Swamp (:41)
35. S&M Sniper (:14)
36. Pig Fucker (:23)
37. Cairo Chop Shop (:22)
38. Facelifter (:54)
39. Whiplash (:19)
40. The Blade (:35)
41. Gob of Spit (:18)

Total Time: 58:31

Line-up / Musicians

- Bill Frisell / guitars, keyboards
- Joey Baron / drums
- Bob Dorough / vocals
- Fred Frith / bass, guitars
- Yamatsuka Eye / vocals, bass
- John Zorn / alto saxophone, vocals
- Wayne Horvitz / keyboards

Releases information

CD Avant (Avan 002), 1992

Note: tracks 9-41 are also available on "Torture Garden" (1990).

Thanks to Faaip_De_Oiad for the addition
and to LiquidEternity for the last updates
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NAKED CITY Grand Guignol ratings distribution

(53 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(34%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(25%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (8%)

NAKED CITY Grand Guignol reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by OpethGuitarist
4 stars Avant-grind jazz.

That's my best attempt at describing this mammoth of an album in 3 words, a creative force that's almost too weird to describe. Most of the singing comes in the form of incoherent babbling (tracks 9-41 do not contain any words for singing), a trait I showed much disdain to in listening to Tago Mago. However, I don't see how this bizarre form of expression could be done in many other ways here. The music is so off the wall that it fits.

This is no ordinary prog record. Then again most avant-RIO styled material never is. The opener is the longest and "most normal" track. It's an epic in terms of length, but stylistically there is little connection from one movement to the next, as with most of the album, it is very free-forming, allowing the mood of the musicians to change the pace or course of the music. There's so many references to different cultures or ideas that to list them is a bit ridiculous. Chances are, in one way or another, you will be peculiarly familiar with some of this material.

To compare this to other Zorn material is well, difficult given the scope of his discography and my admittedly limited knowledge of his music aside from Naked City and a few other albums. I do know that those looking for an intellectual and artistic challenge, Grand Guignol will give you all of this and much more. Any fan of the style of Kayo Dot, Lark's Tongue King Crimson, and various adaptations of metal will surely enjoy this. Highly recommended.

Review by The Truth
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I feel no shame in giving this album that many will find unlistenable five stars because this is truly beautiful music. It's innovative, unique and (despite what some think) has an awesome effect on the ears.

This album is practically impossible to describe, but Naked City's "Grand Guignol" is a humongous and pompous mixture of jazz, classical, avant-garde, grindcore and straight-up metal. Each keeps my attention even though they range from seventeen minutes to thirty seconds, they all just have something that really makes me have this feeling that I don't want to miss any of this. It's so shrill and loud but never ceases to be hauntingly beautiful.

From Zorn torturing his sax, to Yamatzuka screaming his head off, somehow this record remains coherent the whole time. That's why this record is amazing. As far as I know, nothing like this has been accomplished before. Even though the influences are apparent, the mixture Naked City makes with them is something truly original and loveable.

This album is not for the casual listener, but for the adventurous music fan it is a total must have masterpiece.

Latest members reviews

5 stars What you expect from a 40 seconds track with more than 25 tempo changes with weird time signatures? Now, this is ridiculous! Just the way I love, just the way it should be. Well, I had a lot of feedback and critics after my 5/5 review for the unknown masterpiece Plague Soundscapes from The ... (read more)

Report this review (#1024567) | Posted by VOTOMS | Tuesday, August 27, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Now with the addition of vocals as opposed to the previous instrumental album (naked city's self titled),this albums features more hardcore miniatures and takes naked city a step further.Its definitely a band you need to approach with an open mind and once the concept becomes clear you realise t ... (read more)

Report this review (#176568) | Posted by mrcozdude | Friday, July 11, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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