FRANK ZAPPA — Freak Out! (The Mothers Of Invention)

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FRANK ZAPPA - Freak Out! (The Mothers Of Invention) cover
3.78 | 33 ratings | 2 reviews
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Album · 1966


A1 Hungry Freaks, Daddy 3:27
A2 I Ain't Got No Heart 2:30
A3 Who Are The Brain Police? 3:22
A4 Go Cry On Somebody Else's Shoulder 3:31
A5 Motherly Love 2:45
A6 How Could I Be Such A Fool 2:12
B1 Wowie Zowie 2:45
B2 You Didn't Try To Call Me 3:17
B3 Any Way The Wind Blows 2:52
B4 I'm Not Satisfied 2:37
B5 You're Probably Wondering Why I'm Here 3:37
C1 Trouble Every Day 6:10
Help, I'm A Rock (Suite In Three Movements) (8:37)
C2.1 1st Movement: Okay To Tap Dance
C2.2 2nd Movement: In Memoriam, Edgar Varese
C2.3 3rd Movement: It Can't Happen Here
The Return Of The Son Of Monster Magnet (Unfinished Ballet In Two Tableaus) (12:17)
D1.1 I. Ritual Dance Of The Child Killers
D1.2 II. Nullis Pretii (No Commercial Potential)

Total Time 57:38


- Carol Kaye / bass
- Elliot Ingber / guitar
- Frank Zappa / guitar, vocals, cymbals, harmonica, tambourine
- Gene Estes / percussion
- Jimmy Carl Black / drums, percussion, vocals
- John Rotella / percussion
- Plas Johnson / saxophone
- Ray Collins / guitar, vocals, cymbals, harmonica, sound effects, tambourine, finger cymbals
- Roy Estrada / bass, vocals, guitarron
- Ruth Komanofff / percussion

About this release

Verve Records – V6-5005-2

Recorded At T.T.G. Studios

Thanks to kazuhiro for the addition and snobb for the updates


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Members reviews

siLLy puPPy
The beginning of a legend. Album #1 of a gazillion more to come. The Mothers Of Invention didn't exactly take the world by storm with this highly cutting edge album from 1966. It barely made a blip in the musical radar and many of those who did pay attention deemed it unworthy of further listening pleasure. Well pooey on them! Little did the world know then that Mr Zappa, leader of this vast ensemble of the musical mad, would go on to shake up the world and inspire the world of music with his highly erratic, eclectic and political biting take on things.

Despite the album title, this is one of the tamest ZAPPA albums with songs that are R&B, doowop and standard bluesy rock all set to avant-garde sound collages. In a way the amalgamation of the decade before with something so revolutionary was his trademark giving accessible music a little kick in the behind. The album isn't totally tame. At the end we get two fully avant-garde tracks with “It Can't Happen Here” and “The Return Of The Son Of Monster Magnet,” a preview of what would further develop.

It's true that this is the first rock concept album as well as rock double album (if you don't count Dylan as rock) and considering The Beatles released REVOLVER the same year as this, it also seems he was a bit ahead of the game. Despite being ignored by the public at large, this became a cult hit. As cutting edge as this album is I would love to give it five stars, but unfortunately many of the tunes are not as interesting as what would begin on the second album, however this is without a doubt a MUST HAVE for any fan of not only ZAPPA, but of rock and prog alike.
What an album! For the first two-and-a-bit sides Freak Out! treats the listener to some of the most diverse, witty, and bitingly cynical rock music of its era, the sort of thing that might result from a psychedelic band made up of escaped mental patients playing to lyrics written by Bob Dylan on a really bad day - check out Trouble Every Day or Hungry Freaks Daddy for some of the angriest and most direct political writing Zappa would ever indulge in - mixed with sonic experiments like the creepy Who Are the Brain Police? and filled in with some warped deconstructed doo-wop ditties like I Ain't Got No Heart or You're Probably Wondering Why I'm Here.

And then, after Trouble Every Day, it gets *really* strange. But it would be a mistake to write off Help I'm a Rock or Return of the Son of Monster Magnet as aimless jams; like school buddy Captain Beefheart's own strangest work, those two tracks yield more secrets the more you listen to them. Take all the vocals in the It Can't Happen Here segment; try to listen to the words and it just doesn't make sense, until you realise that the voices aren't meant to be saying anything that makes sense - they're being used as instrumentation, and the piece is actually an orchestral ditty conveyed entirely through the human voice.

I can't quite give this one four stars because it does outstay its welcome - one or two of the doo-wop bubblegum pop numbers could have happily been trimmed - but there's no mistaking the importance of this album. At the time it was released, *nobody* had produced anything so simultaneously eccentric and erudite in a rock context.

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