Civilization Phaze III - Pre-release Version

Before CPIII came out, Zappa made several major, close-to-last-minute changes. We now have enough info about this rare bit of conceptual continuity to justify a new page!

Unique material: at least some dialogue tracks, and maybe some music tracks as well

(At one point before it was released, Civilization Phaze III was called Lumpy Gravy Part or Phaze 3.)

From Tal:

I got this from Black Page magazine #42, November 1993. Civilization Phaze III was planned for release in March 1994, but Zappa had the master - which already was at the Music for Nations offices - flown back to LA for some changes.

Tal also provides the track list. The tracks written in bold face are not on the released version. The track notes are included only in those cases when they're different from what appeared on the released version. Thankfully, this material has begun to hit the traders' circles; Matt Olmos provides the comments in red below. He also writes:

I just got my hands on these, and they're split into 6 parts that comprise about 2:07:00 of material. The first act was easy to ID because of all the easily recognizable material, but act two's divisions are tricky. So, until I can split it into bits I'll provide info about what I know now.

Anyway, on with the track listing:

Act 1

1. "This Is Phase III" [the released version spells "Phaze"]
3. "How'd You Get In My Piano?" [released as "Oh-Umm"]
4. THEY MADE ME EAT IT: The gigantic piano hammers begin to move as the characters dance to avoid them.
5. "It's Cushioned" [released as part of the THEY MADE ME EAT IT track]
7. "You Caught He, Didn't You!": MONICA and LARRY discuss food. [unreleased] (This track should be YOU CAUGHT ME.... and it's a very interesting bit of talking. Not a lot about food, but Larry/Motorhead going off on tangents. It's not really a vitally new bit, but it's very amusing.)
9. "A Very Nice Body Too" [released as "A Very Nice Body"]
11. "How The Pigs' Music Works"
13. "It's Not Even A Wurlitzer": A heated discussion concerning what kind of a piano this really is. Eventually a grave is discovered in a distant corner. [released as part of the RELIGIOUS SUPERSTITION track]
15. "Someplace Else Right Now"
17. "A Kayak (On Snow)": It is now time for GIRL 1 [in the notes-as-released, it's MONICA] to recite bad poetry, leading to a short discussion of worms.
18. WHAT WORMS ARE THINKING: The area surrounding the piano is lit to reveal dozens of dancers-as-worms worshipping a stuffed pig, dressed as the Pope, circling the stage on a little motorized wagon. (Now it gets interesting. A clarinet-heavy Synclavier piece with guitar backing is the gist of it. Then percussion enters along with piano as the clarinet wavers between high and low registers back and forth every other note or so. Right before 'Tunnel Into Muck' strings enter briefly, then it segues.) [Charles Ulrich clarifies: The piece originally listed as What Worms Are Thinking is the piece released as Gross Man.]
19. "A Tunnel Into Muck"
20. DIO FA
21. "That Would Be The End Of That"
22. BEAT THE REAPER [Black Page magazine notes that BEAT THE REAPER has nine movements]
23. WAFFENSPIEL [ending act 1, not act 2 as released]

Matt Olmos notes: The rest of Act I is the same as the end of Act II. Act II is where most of the unreleased goodies are.

Act 2

1. "Motors? No! No! No!": ROY and LOUIS open with more speculation on motors. [unreleased] (Most of "I Wish Motorhead Would Come Back" plus two unreleased lines.)
2.I. Negative Light
2.II. Venice Submerged
2.III. The New World Order
2.IV. The Lifestyle You Deserve
2.V. Creationism
2.VI. He Is Risen
3. "Dark Water"
4. RELIGIOUS SUPERSTITION: JESUS leans out of the piano and, with a few mystical hand movements, causes the sunken buildings of Venice to re-surface. Rising with them we see large, perversely mutated crabs.
5. "Attack! Attack! Attack!"
6. "It's Still Dark In Here": GILLY is still complaining as two more girls appear to argue with her. [released as part of the "Attack! Attack! Attack!" track]
12. LIFE IN A DRUM [released at "I Was in a Drum"]
13. "The Big Note" [released as "A Different Octave"]
14. THE PARTIALLY ANSWERED QUESTION: A whole new area of the piano is lit to reveal another group of characters, argiung about whether or not the piano provides room service. [?] (Contains more of the music heard at the beginning of "This Ainít CNN!")
15. "Telefon Carte": JESUS tries to settle the question by pulling a German telephone credit card out of his robe, solemnly reading the text to everyone. [Released as "This Ain't CNN"]
16. "They're Singing Outside": The right tableau is reset to the Christmas position. Around it, as if carolling, we see the ghosts of the Creationists roasted by the holy hand grenade, singing badly. [unreleased] (Contains unreleased dialogue and some very bad singing, as the description would imply.)
17. A PIG WITH WINGS (Contains "The Pigs' Music" at the beginning.)
18. "You Like the Knicks?": Beginning with the eternal question about the relative merits of a certain metropolitan sporting organization, Mike and the others engage in banal conversation regarding intestinal gas. [unreleased] (Also contains unreleased music.)
19. HOT & PUTRID (Contains part of "This Is All Wrong" at the beginning, and the rest of the track at the end plus some additional dialogue.)
20. "Flowing Inside-Out" (Contains additional music before the dialogue.)
21. REVERSE THE PHASE ON IT [sounds similar to "Flowing Inside-Out", but appears to be listed as a music track, not a dialogue track] (This is another Synclavier track.)
22. GROSS MAN (Contains the same dialogue as the released version.) [Charles Ulrich clarifies: The piece originally listed as Gross Man is the piece released on Everything Is Healing Nicely as Jolly Good Fellow. Note that the logic of naming pieces is the same on both versions: whatever music follows the line "I change clothes and suddenly I am Gross Man!" is titled Gross Man.]
23. "Then We Can Sell 'Em Ladders" [released as part of the WHY NOT track] (Also contains the dialogue from "Put A Little Motor In 'Em".)
24. You're Just Insultin' Me, Aren't You?" (Contains some extra foreign language madness at the beginning.)
25. TURNING INTO A PONY [?] (A short snippet of music, then the '68 dialogue from the end of "...Insultin'...".)
26. "Don't You Get It?" [released as "Cold Light Generation"] (Extra Ensemble Modern music between the sections of dialogue.)
27. "WHAT HAPPENED TO THE MUSIC?" [?] (Extra dialogue from the end of "Cold Light Generation" plus some unreleased music. Then it goes back into Moon/Mike dialogue about speaking English and not the other various dialects. Ends with Daryl saying "I think we're not in Kansas anymore.")
28. WE'RE NOT IN KANSAS ANYMORE [?] (Synclavier music. Then some dialogue from Mike about getting drunk to end it all. Some CC to "Strictly Genteel/The Finale." After Mike mentions how he's going to get "fucked up," all music stops cold and the album ends after 3 seconds of silence. Hardly the ending we all know.)

In other words, we have a lot of unreleased music and dialogue, and many different edits of tracks that are otherwise familiar.

home - vinyl vs CDs - weirdo discography - bootlegs - misc - hot lynx - e-mail us at zappa dot patio at gmail dot com 2006-04-22 20:02

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