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Various Artists (Tributes)

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Various Artists (Tributes) Mappa Zappa album cover
3.00 | 1 ratings | 1 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 2018

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Transylvania Boogie - Todd Grubbs Group (5:09)
2. Dead Girls of London - Gabba Zappa Hey! (2:29)
3. Wolf Harbor - Evil Dick (4:28)
4. The Purple Lagoon - Hans Annellsson (3:14)
5. Tinsel Town Rebellion - Tante Tofu (2:30)
6. Let's Move to Cleveland - Bogus Pomp (1:56)
7. Poofter's Froth Wyoming Plans Ahead - The Muffin Men w/ Jimmy Carl Black (2:46)
8. Phyniox - String Trash (3:54)
9. Village of the Sun - Action Zappa (4:17)
10. Cucamonga - Spannertate (2:37)
11. Outrage at Valdez - Fuchsprellen (4:15)
12. Been to Kansas City in A Minor - Fred Handl (7:01)
13. D.C. Boogie - Guranfoe (5:45)
14. San Ber'dino - Caballero Reynaldo (2:44)
15. What's New in Baltimore? - Zappa Early Renaissance Orchestra w/ Ike Willis (6:10)

Total Time 59:15

Line-up / Musicians

- Andrew Greenaway / coordinator, compilation producer, concept

Releases information

The latest Zappa-themed album curated for Cordelia Records by the Idiot Bastard is a collection of tunes with place names in their titles...

All tracks composed by Frank Zappa

Coordinator, Compilation Producer, and Concept by Andrew Greenaway

Released June 6, 2018 by Cordelia Records (CD083)

Thanks to DangHeck for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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VARIOUS ARTISTS (TRIBUTES) Mappa Zappa ratings distribution

(1 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
Good, but non-essential (100%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by DangHeck
3 stars Time for another Zappa tribute(!!!) released by Cordelia Records, and, from what I've surmised, so thankfully compiled and curated by the good people at This LP and their subsequent Mappa Zappa EP were apparent companion pieces to Amaretto Mick Zeuner's The Zappa Tour Atlas, an apparently remarkable and, to quote them directly, "most comprehensive listing [ever] of every concert date and venue". Semi-Zappa-Band-frontman and multi-instrumentalist Bobby Martin provides the Atlas's foreword. For me, this is the third Idiot Bastard release I've heard, following a smattering from 2004's Lemme Take You To The Beach (I didn't realize R. Stevie Moore covered "Cruising For Burgers" and that's just amazing) and their 2015 full-album cover Weasels Re-Ripped. Numerous bands and artists from those return for this geography-based compilation.

We're purportedly taken to Romania with our opener, "Transylvania Boogie" as performed by The Todd Grubbs Group (originally on Chunga's Revenge, 1970). And this is a markedly heavy rendition! This is a song that Frank would play frequently live until his last tour, and of course, if you know as I do, those '80s bands would go hard at times on this'n. What's brought to the table more prominently here is a more directly Metal approach to lead guitar. It's married with some fantastic, fresh drums and what sounds like a Hammond organ. To follow, originally on YCDTOSA 5 (1992) and later on Buffalo (2007), "Dead Girls of London" is covered by Gabba Zappa Hey!, with a distinctly Punk sound (I frankly don't remember this one by title). To say the least, I can do without. Unsurprisingly, I'm truly haunted and disturbed by the next [thank god], a clattering avant-garde rendition of the already-eerie "Wolf Harbor" by Evil Dick. The song was originally released on the not-much-earlier Dance Me This (2015). And no one can do this better, in my experience. Evil Dick rules. Fantastic.

Another well-known for its original live performance, "The Purple Lagoon" (orig. Zappa In New York, 1978) as covered by Hans Annellsson follows. Great, natural juxtaposition from "Wolf Harbor" in its avant nature, though switching then to a Synclavier-Zappa-inspired electronica (is this Midi?). If their name didn't inform and prepare you, Tante Tofu ('Aunt Tofu' auf Deutsch) have a very German delivery, offering an equally reverent Doo-Wop version of the certainly-more-famous title track "Tinsel Town Rebellion" (orig. 1981). Happily changing hands to not only an apparently live-recorded group, but also a sizeable group, at that, Bogus Pomp covers another live favorite, "Let's Move to Cleveland" (performed as early as '76, see FZ:OZ; orig. available via its solos on Guitar, 1988). Just a very nice, straight-ahead cover of a great song. Another I'm not quite familiar with (randomly Country-Western Zappa isn't exactly the side I'm most well-versed), "Poofter's Froth Wyoming Plans Ahead" as performed by Muffin Men next--and naturally featuring Mother Jimmy Carl Black(!)--was originally on Bongo Fury (1975), played live with Captain Beefheart, and the vocals here are well-befitted.

Another on the obscure side, though one I'd defend as Zappa Essential to the grave, next is "Phyniox" as performed most acoustically by String Trash. This is another more recent addition to the overall, readily available Zappa catalog, then-just-released in 2014, opening Joe's Camouflage. Frankly, what they do with the track is shockingly boring [Obviously check out the original]. Onto a definite essential, Action Zappa covers "Village of the Sun". All's fairly well-performed, yet these vocals are just... not ideal. Kinda yuck?... Sorry. Though significantly too soft for my tastes, they did manage to get a guitar tone quite resembling of Frank. Regardless, I'm a bit disappointed. A rare acoustic guitar strums along, met with folksy viol on Spannertate's "Cucamonga" (another from Bongo Fury). I like these vocals (even when they get a little... dissident haha)! Anything over that "Village" cover... Still in questionable territory if you're looking for my recommendation (although best of the mid-album 'meh's).

And a thankful turn to the dark and the electro, Fuchsprellen performs "Outrage at Valdez", a return to eerie tune, this time from his overtly Classical catalog (orig. The Yellow Shark, 1993). Highly minimal. Back into the rarer tracks, Fred Handl covers the seemingly-only-available-via-Imaginary-Diseases (2006) "Been to Kansas City in A Minor", starting off with a very aggressive monologue. We cool on down as the instruments come on in, chill and groovin'. This is the Blues, maybe you've heard. It's this purely American phenomenon that's really sweeping the nation /s. The one saving grace to me is the midsection mallets solo. This is followed by the crunchiest guitar solo you might ever done hear. Not bad, but one that's a little too boring-old-Blues for my taste.

Coming to the close, "D.C. Boogie", another title I'm actually unfamiliar with first glance, is performed most excellently by Guranfoe; a sorta soft, post-progressive thing, perhaps? Another rarity of rarities, this instrumental is also only available on Imaginary Diseases. I do recall that being one of the strongest posthumous Zappa releases I've heard (and I've heard most, to gloat, obviously). Coolest thang on the release since... track 6, "Let's Move to Cleveland". Yee... haw... One I'm frankly shocked to hear acoustic, made more folksy-old-timey plus a lil Latin influence, is "San Ber'dino" as performed by Caballero Reynaldo (orig. One Size Fits All, 1975). To me, this is quite fun. And its production is distinctly better than much on the album. Finally we have "What's New in Baltimore?", one of the most satisfying Zappa compositions out there to me, covered by Zappa Early Renaissance Orchestra. And they are being so true to the Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention original (1985). Delicious stuff. They embrace more synthesized sounds here. And likewise of great interest is the special feature of a much older Ike Willis(!). True indeed. Stick around for the surprise, and surprisingly fitting Yes lift from the ending of their song "The Fish" off Fragile! Color me happy.

And that's it! I would warrant this album overall is decent, certainly worth hearing by fans of Frank Zappa, with or without his Mothers. When you have various artists coming together, you're going to have some highlights, and you're going to have some skips.

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