Zappa Plays Zappa at the Fox, 12/14
A.H. Goldstein Zappa Plays Zappa at the Fox Theatre in Boulder.
Speaking of guitar solos, Dweezil's careful efforts to do justice to his father's style once again bore fruit in the Fox performance. Between improvisations of his own on songs like "Muffin Man," "Hungry Freaks, Daddy" and "Montana," Dweezil included key phrases and turns from the original recordings. During the evening's lone cover song (a version of the Allman Brothers' "Whipping Post" that Frank played throughout the 1980s), Dweezil seemed to wear two hats in a surreal way.
He'd played along with his father for the Allman Brothers tune on the live version from the album Does Humor Belong In Music?. During the Fox Theatre performance, Dweezil seemed to be playing as himself and paying tribute to his father by turns. Even in his moments of pure improve, Dweezil seemed to be pushing to make the point he put into words after "Brain Police," namely, that there's still no one making music like this.
That observation probably didn't come as breaking news for most of the sold-out crowd gathered at the Fox Theatre this weekend, many of whom sported Zappa T-shirts and looked to be over the age of 45. There were plenty of devotees among the younger audience members, as well. Between songs, many who looked to be in their twenties and thirties called out the loudest for obscure cuts from obscure albums.
Still, that point wasn't lost, even among the faithful. Zappa Plays Zappa drew a sold-out crowd, even with a smaller band, and even without a recognizable name like Steve Vai or Terry Bozzio on the bill. It's not easy to find music like this, and a capacity audience didn't want to miss their chance.
Personal Bias: I've been obsessive about Frank Zappa's music since high school, so Dweezil's observations about his father being ahead of his time weren't lost on me.
Random Detail: Between renditions of "Dirty Love" and "Sofa #1," Scheila Gonzalez took to the keyboards for a pretty spot-on version of the theme from "All in the Family."
By the way: Before breaking into "Pygmy Twylyte," Ben Thomas bemoaned the recent performance of the CU Buffs and talked about his own time in Boulder.
Zappa Plays Zappa
Fox Theatre - 12/14/12
Willie the Pimp
Hungry Freaks, Daddy
Echnida's Arf (Of You)
Penguin In Bondage
I'm So Cute
Tryin' to Grow a Chin
Harder Than Your Husband
Wind Up Workin' in a Gas Station
Ride My Face to Chicago
Let's Make the Water Turn Black
Debra Kadabra (feat. Pete Jones)
Who Are the Brain Police?
City of Tiny Lites
Peaches En Regalia
Whippin' Post (Allman Brothers cover)