ZPZ Wrap-Up

ZPZ‘s first leg of the tour is over, and we have a whopping 154 reviews to look back upon. Having read every single one of them, a couple of recurring remarks I noticed:

  • The bandmembers: baffling musicianship, very tight playing.
  • Dweezil: wonderful guitarplaying, obviously doesn’t have the onstage presence/humor of his dad, and was wise enough to acknowledge this by just being himself.
  • Napoleon M. Brock: vital to the group, probably everyone’s favorite throughout the tour.
  • The sound: consistently way too loud, with vocals and musical subtleties getting lost in the mix.
  • The conclusion: we want more!

Now it’s on to October 18 when another 10 shows kick off.

A Zappa-centric blog in The New York Times

On the Zappa-centric blog Kill Ugly Radio, one fan wrote of the May 19 show in Stockholm: “This was my first chance to experience the music of FZ live in concert. And what a concert. Sitting there on the fourth row from the stage, I found myself with BIG smile on my face, laughing out loud at times.”

Wow! :-) – And some more: a review on the NY show.
(You have to register to see this article – 10 seconds only)

ZPZ: Eleven Shows To Go

Hot on the heels of the ZPZ tour, here’s some pictures from the Paris Zenith gig (June 5). No news from Athens (June 7) or Reykjavik (June 9) though… Hello? Did these shows actually take place? Next: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US! I’ll be most interested to read reviews from our American friends. The place to comment being of course right over here.

Gunter Van Assche: Ignoramus Pars Pro Toto

Here at Barry Towers we subscribe to De Morgen, a “quality newspaper”, or so the ads say. To be fair: it is a good newspaper, but reading the review of ZPZ Brussels today written by one Gunter Van Assche, I felt a “Blow It Out Your Ass, Newspaper Person” was in order.

The article, in all its Flemish glory (click to enlarge):

Shall we begin? Please follow your guide…

As an amuse-gueule there was a performance from 1973. Among other things, Frank played “Dental Floss”, a pars pro toto of what you can expect from Zappa.

You probably meant “Montana” Gunter but then, you didn’t really bother to check the discography, did you? “Amuse gueule” and “pars pro toto” sounds awesome though. Didja get any onya?

Music that is as brilliant as it is hilarious, but just as often allows itself to be muffled by incredibly irritating passages. Dweezil’s performance offered more of the same, without the humor of his father.

Okay, Gunter, so you expected Dweezil to come up with the type of wit that was typical of Frank. Too bad it was all about the music, and not the funny intermezzi — but wait! You hate the “incredibly irritating passages”! Just what is it you want, Gunter Van Assche, you hip clueless person you?

We were a lot less wild about Napoleon Murphy Brock, once Frank’s right hand.

Frank, dear Gunter, never had any right hands apart from his own. NMB was an employee, as was every other single member of every other single line-up FZ ever played with. If you would have taken some time to consult the right resources, you would know about this. Pars Pro Toto though!

Too bad there was not a single bit of emotion to be observed. […] Brock has a superb voice but put so much soul into Frank’s phrasing, your toes started to curl faster than shaved wood.

Hey, I know some Latin too! How’s this: contradictio in terminis!

Where and when: Vorst Nationaal, 29 May

It was May 30, Gunter.
Why don’t you go and listen to some Toto. Their 80s hit-single “Africa” should appeal to your musical taste.

Another View At ZPZ Brussels Edition

Last post about ZPZ in Brussels, promise! Here’s what they’re thinking about the show over at zappa.com’s tourlog:

Tonight’s show in Belgium was totally amazing. Over 4000 screaming fans packed into the Forest National and the show was spectacular. The band played one of their best shows of the tour thus far. Dweezil was in top form despite finger injury; Steve laid waste with some incredible solos, and Terry, fresh for a few days away from the ZPZ tour, was exceptional.

Les goûts et les couleurs

Wherein Barry Goes To Vorst

For those interested, you can find my review of yesterday’s ZPZ in Brussels right over here. Apart from the music, a couple of notes:

  • For anyone outside of Brussels, Vorst Nationaal is insanely hard to find. I mean, we’d gone to mappy.com, printed out the itinerary, followed all the directions, and still managed to get lost somewhere between Etterbeek and the Montgomery Tunnel. In the center of Brussels: not a single sign saying “this way to Vorst”. Argh.
  • Getting out of Vorst at 1:30am: ditto. Times two.
  • It was cool to meet a couple of KUR-readers. Hi Vrnzr, hi Bert, hi Matias!
  • You there who made me drop my freshly purchased beer on the floor during intermission: you owe me 3 euro.
  • Dr Sharl is convinced that Napoleon M Brock blew her a kiss at the end of the concert. If anyone present at the show can corroborate this, I would like to hear from you!

Here’s a couple of pictures we took (click to enlarge). Pardon The Crappinessâ„¢ but our camera was running out of gasoline.