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Frank Zappa & The Mothers: Roxy-The Movie (DVD/CD)

Filmed over three nights in December of 1973 at the Roxy Theater in Hollywood, California, Roxy-The Movie is the long awaited video companion to the beloved Roxy & Elsewhere live album from Frank Zappa & The Mothers. Sitting tucked away in the vaults for over four decades, the Zappa Estate and Eagle Rock are finally giving fans what they have been asking for, and believe me, it was well worth the wait. Available in both DVD and Blu-ray formats, both with a companion soundtrack CD, Roxy-The Movie is a document of perhaps Frank Zappa's most accomplished band, which included George Duke (keyboards, vocals), Bruce Fowler (trombone), Napoleon Murphy Brock (sax, flute, vocals), Ruth Underwood (percussion, vibes), Tom Fowler (bass), Ralph Humphrey (drums), and Chester Thompson (drums).

Those familiar with Roxy & Elsewhere will of course recognize many of the selections here, but it's the ability to actually WATCH these incredible musicians play these demanding songs that makes this such a thrill. "Cosmik Debris", "Penguin in Bondage", the wild, circus like atmosphere of "Be-Bop Tango (Of the Old Jazzman's Church), and of course the jaw dropping percussion masterpiece "Cheepnis" are all here, as well as a different take on "Inca Roads", "I'm the Slime/Big Swifty", and great bonus footage of "Pygmy Twylyte", "The Idiot Bastard Son", and "Dickie's Such as Asshole". Zappa himself launches into numerous extended guitar solos, and the unheralded star of the show is Underwood, who just dazzles on vibes and various percussion. Look also for legendary groupie Miss Pamela Miller (later Des Barres) of the GTO's to pop up as well to join in on the fun. Whether it's jazz, rock, blues, funk, or classical, The Mothers cook on every level, and as 'uncommercial' as this music is, it's instantly engaging, no matter how complex or 'out there' any of it might be. Just a stellar performance, living up to its legendary status.

Quality wise, the DVD we have for review contains decent video; the source material obviously shows its age, but it's still pretty good. I'm not sure how much improved the Blu-ray is over the DVD, but that might be worth looking into. The audio is very good, and the companion CD, which leaves off a couple of tunes, is excellent. Overall, this is a must have for any Frank Zappa enthusiast, and I'm sure if you are one, you surely don't need me to tell you that.

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing
1) Cosmik Debris
2) Medley: Penguin In Bondage / T'Mershi Duween / The Dog Breath Variations / Uncle Meat / RDNZL
3) Inca Roads
4) Medley: Echidna's Arf (Of You) / Don't You Ever Wash That Thing / Cheepnis - Percussion
5) Cheepnis
6) Medley: I'm The Slime / Big Swifty
7) Be-Bop Tango (Of The Old Jazzman's Church)
8 ) Don't Eat The Yellow Snow (end credits)
9) Father O'Blivion (end credits)
Bonus Features
Additional tracks: (1) Medley: Pygmy Twylyte / The Idiot Bastard Son (2) Dickies's Such An Asshole

1) "Something Terrible Has Happened…"
2) Cosmik Debris
3) Medley: Penguin In Bondage / T'Mershi Duween / The Dog Breath Variations / Uncle Meat / RDNZL
4) Medley: Echidna's Arf (Of You) / Don't You Ever Wash That Thing / Cheepnis - Percussion
5) Cheepnis
6) Be-Bop Tango (Of The Old Jazzman's Church)

Added: October 26th 2015
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Eagle Rock Entertainment
Hits: 3207
Language: english

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