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Frank Zappa - Frank Zappa For President CD (album) cover


Frank Zappa



3.84 | 12 ratings

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Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
4 stars It is my opinion, now 23 years after his untimely death, that any newly released Frank Zappa music is a very good thing. But since (supposedly) all of the albums Mr. Zappa himself prepared for his family to release have been issued, there can only be a dwindling amount of fresh material to be found.

This album is a collection timed to coincide with the 2016 US Presidential election (I won't get into my personal feelings about the process here).

The collection consists of three previously unreleased (I think) Synclavier tracks, one FZ interview piece backed by some Synclavier accents, one remix/re-edit of a very classic track, and two live tracks from the '88 tour.

Let's start with the Synclavier music, as these pieces are the best reason to purchase the album. "Overture To "Uncle Sam"" is easily the most outstanding work. It's a Stravinsky tinged opus that sounds to me like it was meant to be a guitar concerto. That the synth guitar lines would probably confound nearly every guitarist on the planet is a moot point. I would love to hear what a group like Ensemble Moderne could do with this.

"Amnerica" is a Synclavier piece that I believe appeared in orchestral arrangement as "Questi Cazzi Di Piccione" on "The Yellow Shark". This one has lyrics sung by Napoleon Murphy Brock, and is quite hypnotic. Although this is nice, there is a 10 minute live version on Youtube performed by the Ensemble Moderne that is far better than either this one or the Yellow Shark version.

"Medieval Ensemble" I do not believe has been released elsewhere. It's nice, but sounds like many of FZ's Synclavier works, meaning just a little too formless for me to listen to repeatedly. "If I Was President" is FZ in an interview speaking about what he would do if he was President, with synth noises behind him, similar to what he did to the politicians bloviating on "Meets The Mothers Of Prevention".

"Brown Shoes Don't Make It" is a slightly different edit and mix of the original "Absolutely Free" version. Ears familiar with the original will hear the differences.

"Finally, there are two tracks from the '88 tour. "When The Lie's So Big" is not very different from the "Broadway The Hard way" version, and just as dated by the topical references in the lyrics, and "America The Beautiful", played gospel style, with a fantastic FZ solo.

Evolver | 4/5 |


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