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Frank Zappa
"Sheik Yerbouti"

© Rykodisc Records


track listing
  • I Have Been In You
  • Flakes
  • Broken Hearts Are
    For Assholes
  • I'm So Cute
  • James Crusher
  • What Ever Happened To
    All The Fun
    In The World
  • Rat Tomango
  • Wait A Minute
  • Bobby Brown
    Goes Down
  • Rubber Shirt
  • The Sheik
    Yerbouti Tango
  • Baby Snakes
  • Tryin' To Grow A Chin
  • City Of Tiny Lites
  • Dancin' Fool
  • Jewish Princess
  • Wild Love
  • Yo' Mama

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    Frank Zappa
    "Sheik Yerbouti"

    Frank Zappa's albums are truly unique... Reflecting with the times, his off-beat humor in storytelling brings a chuckle to all those listening to his adult humor. 1979's Sheik Yerbouti is no exception. Focusing on the latest Disco craze (Shake Your Booty) -- "Dancing Fool" was the most remembered track from this release -- It also showcases Zappa's own musical styles in Jazz and Hard Rock.

    The adult lyrics in "I Have Been In You" has a '50s doo-wop sounding style. (Yes, think of the adult content found in the song title...) Of course, there are many typical Zappa humor tracks here, such as "Flakes" which features guest vocals by guitarist Adrian Belew, as he does what seems to be a very impressive Bob Dylan vocal imitation. With a title such as "Broken Hearts Are For Assholes" -- the novelty surely stands out as Zappa being as funny as the lyrics tell.

    The humor is also there on "I'm So Cute," yet this song showcases Zappa conducting a hard rock band, likewise on the next song, "Jones Crusher." "Rat Tomango" also showcases Zappa in hard rock, as this song is a live instrumental. Other instrumentals include the obscure Zappa Jazz style on "Rubber Shirt" and guitar-driven hard rock on "The Sheik Yerbouti Tango."

    "What Ever Happened To All The Fun In The World" and "Wait A Minute" are short pieces of experimental sound effects.

    The funny typical Zappa storytellers are heard on "Bobby Brown Goes Down." Zappa's obscure music and typical lyrical humor is heard on "Baby Snakes." The punk rock style popular in the late '70s is heard on "Tryin' To Grow A Chin," and experimenting in hard rock is heard on "City Of Tiny Lites."

    The Zappa humor returns with the quirky "Jewish Princess," likewise "Wild Love." A very impressive orchestration in jazz/rock is heard on the last track, "Yo' Mama."

    Frank Zappa's Sheik Yerbouti has its many funny novelty moments. Yet it also shows how Zappa can be impressive as a musician. Even so, it's the funny lyrics, and obscure musical representations that stands out for Zappa's popularity. Many of the typical novelty Zappa songs here can compare to his very funny Joe's Garage series, and if you're already familiar with Zappa's obscure stories, this album will be greatly appreciated.

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    Previous Review: #936
    Ryan Adams--Gold
    Next Review: #938
    Queen--Sheer Heart Attack