Tuesday, July 18, 2006

69. The Mothers of Invention - Freak Out! (1966)

Track Listing

1. Hungry Freaks Daddy
2. I Ain't Got No Heart
3. Who Are The Brain Police
4. Go Cry On Somebody Else's Shoulder
5. Motherly Love
6. How Could I Be Such A Fool
7. Wowie Zowie
8. You Didn't Try To Call Me
9. Any Way The Wind Blows
10. I'm Not Satisfied
11. You're Probably Wondering Why I'm Here
12. Trouble Everyday
13. Help I'm A Rock
14. It Can't Happen Here
15. Return Of The Son Of Monster Magnet


If Revolver and Pet Sounds were two extremely inventive albums this year, Freak Out! by The Mothers is not behind them. In fact Zappa and friends are so ahead of their time that they're ahead of our time. There is just a level of strangeness here which is incomparable to anything else I've reviewed here.

The title is extremely appropriate, and if you don't Freak Out! once or twice while listening to this there is something seriously wrong with you. Zappa actually manages to make this double album quite digestible by incrementally rising the freak stakes from quite "normal" rock to the weirdest shit in the last track. The album just gets progressively weirder and weirder.

One of the highlights here, Who Are the Brain Police?, sounds like a very demented Beach Boys song, Brian Wilson during a very bad acid trip. Zappa's lyrics are also amazing, at times extremely funny and at other times extremely interventive or just plain surreal. This is something that needs to be listened to to be believed.

Finally let me say that this is definitely not an album for every one. My girlfriend hates it for example, it makes her physically ill. I can understand that, and I'd be lying if the first time I heard it I didn't feel a sudden turining in my stomach in the last four tracks mainly. But it grows on you and you start admiring Zappa for his amazing compositional talent and love for experimentation.

You can stream it from Napster or buy it at Amazon UK or US.

Track Highlights

1. Wowie Zowie
2. Hungry Freaks, Daddy
3. Who Are The Brain Police?
4. You Didn't Try To Call Me

Final Grade



CREAM CHEESE! cream cheese! Cream Cheese! CrEaM ChEeSe!

From Wiki:

The back cover. The small text reads: "These Mothers is crazy. You can tell by their clothes. One guy wears beads and they all smell bad. We were gonna get them for a dance after the basketball game but my best pal warned me you can never tell how many will show up...sometimes the guy in the fur coat doesn't show up and sometimes he does show up only he brings a big bunch of crazy people with him and they dance all over the place. None of the kids at my school like these Mothers...specially since my teacher told us what the words to their songs meant.
Sincerely forever,
Suzy Creamcheese
Salt Lake City, Utah."


Anonymous said...

this album also provided pavement with the title of an album (wowee zowee) and apparently the band monster magnet, unless i'm mistaken.

Francisco Silva said...

Wow, Adam, you are alive man! Thanks for more trivia.