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Rock - Released September 24, 2021 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released November 19, 2021 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released October 8, 2021 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released June 18, 2021 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Officially released for the first time, this live recording features Frank Zappa's final show on U.S. soil at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York on March 25, 1988. The concert saw Zappa and his 11-piece band play a career-spanning set including a number of fan favorites, before heading to Europe and imploding. The album includes the infamous "The Beatles Medley," for which Zappa rewrote the lyrics to three Beatles songs to address the exposure of evangelist Jimmy Swaggart at the time. © Rich Wilson /TiVo
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Rock - Released November 27, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released November 27, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released October 2, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released October 2, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released October 2, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released October 2, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released September 25, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released September 11, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released June 26, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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This box set is a real treasure trove for Frank Zappa fans. It is a celebration of 50 years since the formation of The Mothers, a project which didn’t last long but marked an important period in the life of the great musician and his fans. The album, made up of 70 songs, is a selection of both studio and live recordings discovered by the Zappa family. The recordings are finally available digitally on four CDs, adding up to more than four hours of music from a group born out of the ashes of The Mothers of Invention. The Mothers of Invention broke up the previous year for financial reasons but also, as Zappa came to explain, “through a lack of effort and cooperation”. Another version of the story, pointed out by some band members, is that the break up was due to Zappa’s dictatorial tendency; a genius whose perfectionism verged on madness. For these reasons, Mothers of Invention came to an end. Following the group's collapse Zappa released a highly successful solo album, Hot Rats (1969), which contains one of his most successful tunes, Peaches en Regalia. Then The Mothers came to be, made up of six musicians: English drummer Aynsley Dunbar, jazz keyboardist George Duke, Ian Underwood on guitar, Jeff Simmons on bass and some ex-members of The Turtles: singers Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan, aka “The Phlorescent Leech and Eddie” or “Flo & Eddie”. The Mothers featured on Zappa’s next solo album, his third, Chunga’s Revenge (1970). Ultimately, this line-up lived a brief seven-month existence as, in January 1971, Simmons quit the group during the recording of the original soundtrack for the film 200 Motels, co-directed by Zappa himself and Tony Palmer. During this short period, The Mothers spent several hours recording at the famous Trident Studios in London with a young, already well-known producer, Roy Thomas Baker, who would go on to produce albums for Queen, The Cars and Alice Cooper… This album also gives us, for the first time, alternative versions of Sharleena and Wonderful Wino with an incredible guitar solo from the man himself… In addition, there are unreleased tracks such as the impressive Red Tubular Lighter, Giraffe and a never-before-heard version of Envelopes. In short, this album is a sizeable gift for all aficionados of the great Frank Zappa. © Yan Céh/Qobuz
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Rock - Released June 26, 2020 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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This box set is a real treasure trove for Frank Zappa fans. It is a celebration of 50 years since the formation of The Mothers, a project which didn’t last long but marked an important period in the life of the great musician and his fans. The album, made up of 70 songs, is a selection of both studio and live recordings discovered by the Zappa family. The recordings are finally available digitally on four CDs, adding up to more than four hours of music from a group born out of the ashes of The Mothers of Invention. The Mothers of Invention broke up the previous year for financial reasons but also, as Zappa came to explain, “through a lack of effort and cooperation”. Another version of the story, pointed out by some band members, is that the break up was due to Zappa’s dictatorial tendency; a genius whose perfectionism verged on madness. For these reasons, Mothers of Invention came to an end. Following the group's collapse Zappa released a highly successful solo album, Hot Rats (1969), which contains one of his most successful tunes, Peaches en Regalia. Then The Mothers came to be, made up of six musicians: English drummer Aynsley Dunbar, jazz keyboardist George Duke, Ian Underwood on guitar, Jeff Simmons on bass and some ex-members of The Turtles: singers Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan, aka “The Phlorescent Leech and Eddie” or “Flo & Eddie”. The Mothers featured on Zappa’s next solo album, his third, Chunga’s Revenge (1970). Ultimately, this line-up lived a brief seven-month existence as, in January 1971, Simmons quit the group during the recording of the original soundtrack for the film 200 Motels, co-directed by Zappa himself and Tony Palmer. During this short period, The Mothers spent several hours recording at the famous Trident Studios in London with a young, already well-known producer, Roy Thomas Baker, who would go on to produce albums for Queen, The Cars and Alice Cooper… This album also gives us, for the first time, alternative versions of Sharleena and Wonderful Wino with an incredible guitar solo from the man himself… In addition, there are unreleased tracks such as the impressive Red Tubular Lighter, Giraffe and a never-before-heard version of Envelopes. In short, this album is a sizeable gift for all aficionados of the great Frank Zappa. © Yan Céh/Qobuz
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Rock - Released December 20, 2019 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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For fans only! This colossal 7 hours and 18 minutes gathers all of the sessions Frank Zappa did for his Hot Rats album and offers a fascinating insight into every nook and cranny of the extraordinary musician’s brain, who sadly left us in 1993. Recorded in 1969 in Los Angeles, these sessions signalled the (temporary) end of The Mothers of Invention, even if Ian Underwood is still present here. Far from the stylistic patchwork of that strange group, the Hot Rats Zappa magnifies the fusion between rock and jazz, with five in six tracks being instrumental: there’s not much room for unnecessary noise. Don Van Vliet aka Captain Beefheart takes to the mic alone on Willie the Pimp. Zappa allows all of his invited solo artists to fully express themselves, including violinist Jean-Luc Ponty, guitarist Lowell George and bassist Shuggie Otis (only 15 years old at the time!). This jazzy fusion keeps a certain narrative frame across the six volumes; extra-long jam sessions, endless solos, complicit dialogues between musicians, everything's in place to allow the listener to be transported to the Californian studio as a fly on the wall witnessing the conception of an album which would influence an entire generation. In the original album notes, Frank Zappa described this as a “film for your ears”. Interestingly, at the exact moment Hot Rats was being produced, another jazz-fusion album saw the light of day on the other side of the country, in New York: Bitches Brew by Miles Davis. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Rock - Released October 25, 2019 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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The band who became known as "The Roxy Band" for their performances on the Roxy and Elsewhere album is nearly universally loved by Zappa fans. This set captures them at the very beginning with a pair of shows recorded in Chicago, just the second stop on the tour for this new group, who had started rehearsing just over a month earlier. As you'd expect, the band is tight and George Duke and Ruth Underwood shine throughout. Highlights include Duke's Moog freak-out intro to "Dupree's Paradise" and FZ's guitar solo on "Big Swifty." It's interesting to compare the set list to the Roxy shows, recorded about a month and a half later. Both "The Eric Dolphy Memorial BBQ" and the "Farther O'Blivion" extended jazz suite were dropped from the set by the Roxy shows, and here we hear the intro and outro to "Village of the Sun" that were later cut from the tune. The rehearsal material features "Magic Fingers," which never actually made it to the live set list, and there are additional musical elements used in the "Penguin in Bondage" rehearsal that were not used later. While the shorter tunes from the rehearsal material are full, uninterrupted performances, there are a number of false starts on "Inca Roads" and "Farther O'Blivion." Those are really fun because we hear the rapport between Frank, George, and Ruth as they crack each other up. Ruth's laugh is particularly wonderful. It's so obvious that they're enjoying themselves. Sound quality is excellent even though this is just a three-track recording. The mix is not always perfect, but that's a small gripe and fans will just be happy to have more high-quality material from this amazingly talented band. Halloween 73 is another excellent treat from the Zappa vaults. © Sean Westergaard /TiVo
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Rock - Released October 25, 2019 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Rock - Released May 4, 1979 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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The material on this album originally was intended to be part of a four-record set called Läther, prepared for release in 1977. Then Frank Zappa got into a disagreement with his record company, Warner Bros., and Läther was split up into several different releases as part of a contractual agreement. The results were dumped on the market during 1978 and 1979, while Zappa moved on to his own record label. Orchestral Favorites consists of material recorded on September 17 and 18, 1975, with a 37-piece orchestra, and includes such familiar Zappa themes as "Duke of Prunes" (from Absolutely Free) and "Strictly Genteel" (from 200 Motels); "Bogus Pomp" also consisted largely of 200 Motels music. The themes are melodic and often majestic, with various startling juxtapositions and changes. This was the first release of Zappa orchestral material since Lumpy Gravy and a precursor of things to come. © William Ruhlmann /TiVo
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Rock - Released February 2, 2018 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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In forty-four years, this isn’t the first time that the recordings from December 8, 9 and 10, 1973 at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood have been released one some form or another. First, there was the double album Roxy & Elsewhere in 1974, then Roxy by Proxy in 2014, Roxy the Soundtrack in 2015, and finally this The Roxy Performances which covers the entirety of the four concerts, as well as the filmed rehearsals from December 8 and 10, not forgetting a preparatory session of the Apostrophe (') album in Ike Turner’s Bolic Studios, on December 12th. Is it really useful to remind you that Roxy & Elsewhere is one of the finest in history, all genres included? Consequently, we were entitled to wonder if bringing back what was sidelined by Zappa himself was worth it. Aside from Zappa’s biggest fans, would the average person appreciate for what it’s worth five versions of Pygmy Twylyte, of which one lasts almost 25 minutes (split into two parts), or four variations of Penguin in Bondage or Uncle Meat? More than ever, we’ll remind you one of the golden rules to apply to Zappa more than to any other form of music: you have to have your mind open as much as your ears and let yourself get carried away. You’ll surprise yourself by starting listening to this copious compilation of 84 tracks (Zappa’s monologues included)—that is to say almost eight hours—telling yourself that you’ll only do three or four extracts before moving on to something else, to finally discover that Zappa’s magic is such that you’ll have the greatest difficulty letting go of it. The master’s excellence and one of the best Mothers formations reach such heights that you’ll have difficulties finding any redundancies here. If we had to keep only one significant example, it would probably be Don't You Ever Wash that Thing?, whose different versions wonderfully demonstrate the perfect blend of high skills and collectedness which keep the music from ever getting dull or monotonous. At most, you might switch off a bit during Be-bop Tango (Of the Old Jazzmen’s Church), where the interaction with the audience lasts a bit too long, even if the many musical gags are worth the detour. But you’ll be tempted more than once to take on more lessons with Professor Zappa, especially in the studio section, in which he leads his Mothers with as much firmness as dexterity. Finally, it wouldn’t be superfluous to insist on the exceptional sound take of these “performances”. Planned at first for a quadriphonic version, these recordings have been particularly polished, just like their transition to digital. ©JPS/Qobuz
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Rock - Released October 20, 2017 | Frank Zappa Catalog

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Each year, fans of Frank Zappa didn’t celebrate Halloween like any other Americans. No. Before passing away at only 52 on December 4, 1993, their idol had developed the habit of offering relentless marathon concerts. First scheduled in Passaic, New Jersey then in Chicago, they took place in New York starting from 1974. From 28th to 31st October, 1977, in the Palladium hall, Zappa and his wacky band gave six concerts that have made history. Everything has of course be recorded and four of these shows have even been filmed (Baby Snakes). To celebrate the fortieth birthday of this great event unlike any other, the entirety of this party has finally been published. 158 remastered tracks, and more than 15 hours of music! Alongside Zappa, the faithful Terry Bozzio (drums), Tommy Mars and Peter Wolf (keyboards), Adrian Belew (guitar), Ed Mann (percussion) and Patrick O’Hearn (bass) are there to cover an almost eleven-year career and dig in albums as emblematic as Hot Rats, Over-Nite Sensation, Bongo Fury, One Size Fits All or even Zoot Allures. © CM/Qobuz