FRANK ZAPPA – Zappa ’80, Mudd Club/Munich

April 7, 2023, a year ago


Greg Prato

Rating: 9.0

review classic rock frank zappa

FRANK ZAPPA – Zappa ’80, Mudd Club/Munich

Over the past few years, quite a few live recordings have been issued from deep within Frank Zappa’s extensive vault. And the latest offering is the 3-CD set, Zappa ‘80: Mudd Club/Munich, which as its title hints at, features a pair of performances from 1980: the Mudd Club in New York City on May 8 and the Olympiahalle in Munich, Germany on July 3. 

Both shows feature a stellar line-up, consisting of Zappa- vocals and guitar, Ike Willis- vocals and guitar, Ray White- vocals and guitar, Tommy Mars- keyboards, Arthur Barrow- bass, keyboards, and vocals, plus David Logeman- drums.

The setlists for both shows contain quite a few tracks that proved to be standards during this era of Zappa live performances – “Keep It Greasy,” “Easy Meat,” “The Meek Shall Inherit Nothing,” and a tune penned in tribute to one of the venues featured in this set, “Mudd Club.” Also spotted is a much leisurely-paced rendition of what would prove to be the title track of a studio album issued the following year, “You Are What You Is,” plus the classic “Bobby Brown Goes Down” – both of which contain thought-provoking lyrics that would have undoubtedly created an uproar if aired for the first time in today’s PC-crazed/cancel culture society. 

Which leads one to wonder – where in today’s world of rock music is someone as fearless, provocative, and humorous as Zappa?

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