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Frank Zappa - Them Or Us CD (album) cover

THEM OR US

Frank Zappa

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.28 | 188 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Stooge
2 stars When you have a dog wearing sunglasses and a dress on your album cover, it makes for a good way to tell the potential listener about the randomness of the collection of songs within. It begins with a doo-wop song in "The Closer You Are", then onto the blues-based "In France", a couple of instrumentals, and some rockers such as the Allman Brothers tune "Whippin' Post". He even lets his son contribute some lyrics on "Frogs With Dirty Little Lips".

The highlights of this album are mostly found within the instrumentals "Sinister Footwear II", "Marqueson's Chicken" and "Them Or Us", showing that if Zappa will guarantee one thing, it is that he will always surround himself with nothing short of the best musicians he can get. "Stevie's Spanking" is a nice little rocking tune featuring Dweezil Zappa and Steve Vai trading solos.

The least appealing material on the album is with songs such as "Truck Driver Divorce", "Be in My Video", and "Baby Take Your Teeth Out". These songs have the signature Zappa lyrical humor, but musically don't really grab me, even in the instrumental portions of "Truck Driver Divorce", and the humor isn't as strong as it once was. "Ya Hozna" is interesting in that it uses backwards vocal tracks from various band members, but it grows tiring after around half way through the song.

Much of the material on this album feels more like a collection of B-side material in comparison to other Zappa releases. If you are just getting into Frank's music, I think there are better options in his massive discography to begin with.

Stooge | 2/5 |

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