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Frank Zappa - Them Or Us CD (album) cover

THEM OR US

Frank Zappa

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.28 | 188 ratings

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Evolver
Special Collaborator
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars This album, which I think tries to capture the magic of "Sheik Yerbouti", seems to be a mostly pop-ish (for Frank Zappa) album, with a few shining moments, some of Zappa's worst music of the eighties, but mostly average songs.

First, the good stuff: at the top are the instrumentals and guitar solo pieces. Sinister Footwear II, Marqueson's Chicken and Them Are Us all fall into this category. Also up there is a very hot rendition of the Allman Brothers' Whippin' Post.

The next step down are In France featuring Johnny 'Guitar' Watson, Stevie's Spanking (although there are better live versions of this one), Be In My Video a dig at MTV, and which also had a video made to go along with it, and Frogs With Dirty Little Lips witha writing credit from a young Ahmet.

Then there's The Closer You Are, an unimpressive doo-wop song, and an unnecessary remake of Sharleena.

All the way at the bottom are Ya Hozna a repetitive backing track, with backwards vocals from Sofa and Moon Unit (possibly outtakes from Valley Girl), Truck Driver Divorce, with a badly sung melody, but a pretty good guitar solo, Baby, Take You Teeth Out, which just isn't as funny as Frank probably thought it was, and Planet Of My Dreams, which is almost unlistenable.

For a mixed bag like this, three stars, I guess.

Evolver | 3/5 |

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