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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

We're Only In It For The Money

The Mothers Of Invention

1968

Buy At Rough Trade
We're Only In It For The Money
Album Summary

We're Only in It for the Money is the third studio album by American rock band the Mothers of Invention, released on March 4, 1968 by Verve Records. As with the band's first two efforts, it is a concept album, and satirizes left- and right-wing politics, particularly the hippie subculture, as well as the Beatles' album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. It was conceived as part of a project called No Commercial Potential, which produced three other albums: Lumpy Gravy, Cruising with Ruben & the Jets, and Uncle Meat. We're Only in It for the Money encompasses rock, experimental music, and psychedelic rock, with orchestral segments deriving from the recording sessions for Lumpy Gravy, which was previously issued as a solo instrumental album by Capitol Records and was subsequently reedited by frontman Frank Zappa and released by Verve; the reedited Lumpy Gravy was produced simultaneously with We're Only in It for the Money and is the first part of a conceptual continuity, continued with the reedited Lumpy Gravy and concluded with Zappa's final album Civilization Phaze III (1994).

Wikipedia

Rating

2.51

Votes

10944

Genres

  • Rock
  • Psychedelic Rock

Reviews

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Tue Nov 07 2023
1

I have to apologise to Frank Zappa but I simply don’t get this one, random non-musical noises and vocals throughout. I listened to this on a flight and there was a kid who shat himself screaming like he was being exorcised and I thought it was part of the album. (I wish this was a lie)

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Thu Aug 31 2023
1

Frank Zappa is really sticking it to big Good Music on this one

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Wed Jan 11 2023
2

???????? i much prefer zappa when he.... actually tries to play the guitar and make interesting music. like, this music is experimental and satirical, but to no end. maybe i don't get it? i feel like i do get it, but just don't like it. what a boring bit. satire has evolved so much past this point. this is irony-poisoned nonsense. there are moments where i chuckle, but it's not enough to hold up an album that just doesn't hit the mark.

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Sat Jun 03 2023
2

Aggressively juvenile. I guess once had to be there to get the joke. I wasn't, and I don't

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Thu Sep 07 2023
2

I mean for a Zappa album, this is better than many. You know the father of Dwezel and Moon Unit is gonna bring the weird and this one has it in spades. The odd conversational chatter really stood out to me. Overall, it's like art at a museum where you look at it and think Well I wouldn't want it in my house, but I'm glad it exists. Like that.

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Thu Dec 22 2022
5

тоже немного психоделичное 60е ее whats the ugliest Party of your body

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Sun Feb 26 2023
1

I’m quite apprehensive about this album. Having heard only one Frank Zappa album before, I go into this with pretty low hopes. I actually went back to look at my last review for Joe’s Garage, and I’m surprised I rated it as highly as I did, because I thought I didn’t like it. I guess I was wrong and I just have a bad memory. Songs I already knew: none Favourites: Absolutely Free I don’t think it’s any exaggeration to say that this album was absolutely awful. There is lots of noise that I wouldn’t really consider music, parts where music is played backwards instead, and generally just comes across as really annoying. The only times where I’d find myself saying, “Well, this song is decent at least,” was only because it came after something that made my ears bleed. Taken in isolation, even the better songs on this album are still pretty bad. Don’t listen to this album. Do something better with your time.

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Thu Sep 29 2022
4

"We're Only in It for the Money" is the third studio album from The Mothers of Invention. It is a concept album satirizing left and right-wing politics especially the hippie subculture and The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." Why not? The original album cover which is now the album cover but on the initial release was not the album cover parodies that Beatles album including the band dressed in drag. At times, this album is hilarious. As with all Frank Zappa albums that I've heard, there is a lot going on. Voices and noises from everywhere, multiple instruments, time signatures, spoken word songs, telephone conversations, etc. The music is classified as experimental, rock and psychedelic. Hard to classify Frank. This album was the first album in a project called No Commercial Project which included the next two Mothers' albums and a solo instrumental Zappa album. It is included in the National Recording Registry for its "culturally, historically, and aesthetically significance" and "a scathing satire on hippiedom and America's reaction to it." "Are You Hung Up" starts things off with various people talking including a stuttering Eric Clapton. This song rolls into "Who Needs the Peace Corps" which is a satire of the hippie culture. Very funny. Sort of pyschedelic Indian-sounding music. "Absolutely Free" begins with a piano and then goes into a waltz with a harpsichord and various sound effects. Another song criticizing hippies and the Summer of Love. Next is "Flower Punk" and it is just great. It parodies garage rock and is a carnival version of Hendrix's "Hey Joe." The distorted vocals are hilarious sounding like the lead singer was huffing helium throughout. On the second side is "Let's Make the Water Turn Black" probably the song I've heard most from this album. Frank sings like a teenager/kid and it's about two kids he grew up with: how they fart, pop pills, go in the army and make alcohol with raisins turning the water black. On "Lonely Little Girl" you finally hear a Zappa electric guitar. The music and vocals kind of go pyschedelic. Definitely 60's sounding. "The Chrome Plated Megaphone of Destiny" ends things with a piano and various noises - musique concrète - recorded sounds modified through audio techniques into a song montage. A very Frank way to finish. This is one of those albums that if you like Frank you'll like it and if you don't you won't. The parody started wearing thin on multiple listened but was initially hilarious. There's always enough going on experimentally with Zappa's music to appreciate a lot.

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Thu Oct 06 2022
4

Let me take a minute to tell you my friend…this was a super interesting album that I’ll probably never listen to again. 😂

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Fri Oct 14 2022
4

Sophomoric, anti-hippy sound collage psych.

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Thu Sep 08 2022
2

Just too big brain and quirky for me. Seems like interesting jazzy music, but then it is nerds doing skits and songs they think are funny. It's not that clever.

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Tue Mar 12 2024
2

This album has way too much of what I don't like about Frank Zappa. On paper, he's on the money - brassy, irreverent, stylistically eclectic, freewheelingly creative, larger than life but weirdly relatable. In reality, this may be intended as sharp satire, but it's mostly a hodgepodge of ideas that are hard on the ears. The album lacks any musicality to temper its sharp edges, and the jokes don't land 50+ years later. This just isn't fun to listen to. It doesn't even sound like it was all that fun to make, although knowing what I know about Zappa, I'm sure he was endlessly entertained at least. On behalf of weird kids everywhere though, God bless Frank Zappa. The man was one of a kind. Fave Songs: Nasal Retentive Calliope Music, Mom & Dad, Are You Hung Up?, What's the Ugliest Part of Your Body?

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Thu Mar 23 2023
5

Really enjoyed this one. Having heard some of the best and worst of San Fran psychedelia over the course of doing this, it is refreshing to hear true weirdo music that wants to poke fun at the whole scene. Who Needs The Peace Corps, Let's Make the Water Turn Black and What's The Ugliest Part of Your Body are all highlights. The album is packed too - one of those great albums where nothing sticks around longer than absolutely necessary. Hot Rats did nothing for me, I enjoyed Freak Out, but this is a bone fide classic.

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Fri Nov 11 2022
2

Frank is an acquired taste. This album was a little too odd for my liking

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Thu Dec 08 2022
2

The parts that were actually music were just ok, the rest was insufferable noise. Not at all for me

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Mon May 08 2023
2

There are people who are obsessed by Zappa and proclaim him a genius. Whenever I listen to him I feel like I am on the outside of some elaborate joke that is impossible for me to find funny

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Fri Mar 01 2024
2

Just found this all a bit silly and irritating. Too jaunty!

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Thu Mar 07 2024
2

Erm, I feel like I lack the cultural context to understand the importance of this album. Nothing in here particularly stuck with me such that I would listen to it again. 2/5

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Fri Mar 22 2024
2

I get that this album is supposed to be modern satire, but honestly it sounds like a couple of kids from the 60s recording fart noises into an old tape machine.

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Wed Jun 12 2024
2

Maybe when this came out it was earth shattering and cool and trippy. Now it just sucks.

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Fri Mar 01 2024
1

Even as a joke album, We're Only In It For The Money is a pile of hot, steaming garbage. Meandering and obnoxious, the music of the album seems to require the listener to be actively tripping on LSD or Shrooms to understand a single thing that's going on, and I simply have not fried enough of my brain cells to consider these toilet sounds 'music'

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Thu Mar 07 2024
1

What on God's green earth am I listening to? This is horrible and nonsensical and artistically worthless in my view. It's like a bunch of strung-out ferrets invaded a recording studio and proceeded to muck around with unknown gadgets to make random noise. (Apologies to ferrets, as this is not intended to offend you.) What a waste of my time. Why is this drivel a part of a list like this?

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Fri Mar 15 2024
1

Albums like these are why people hate shit like this or why people give up.

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Wed Mar 20 2024
1

“I'm completely stoned / I'm hippy and I'm trippy / I'm a gypsy on my own / I'll stay a week and get the crabs and Take a bus back home.” That’s all I can say. It’s like Zappa was attempting to take the most drug fueled parts of the Beatles and wash it down with a speed ball and a bottle of French Absinthe. Van Gogh wasn’t making an artistic statement when chopped of his own ear, he was listening to this album. Pass…

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Thu Mar 21 2024
1

It thinks of itself as satire, but it’s just a cynical asshole calling everyone else dumb because it thinks that no one else is as enlightened as them. Squares: dumb. Hippies: dumb. People who enjoy listening to music: dumb.

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Thu Mar 28 2024
1

So what if my asshole brother revered Frank Zappa, holding his every creation as the pinnacle of music deemed to be good and worthwhile? So what? I fucking hate this shit and I'm way cooler than you, bro.

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Fri Apr 05 2024
1

Okay this was just actual noise.

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Fri Apr 05 2024
1

Uhm, if this is a joke, I don't get it. If it's music, I don't get it either.

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Wed Apr 17 2024
1

The Mothers of Invention’s We're Only In It For The Money is such a wack show. Its like the JPEGMAFIA of the 60’s, except Peggy makes good music. This is just so unbelievably cluttered. If thats what they were going for, kudos I guess, but it was a horrible listening experience, as I didn’t get anything out of it, and the every other 30 second interlude was just stupid. All in all, We're Only In It For The Money is a horrible. Best Song: Flower Punk Worst Song: Nasal Retentive Calliope Music

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Fri Nov 18 2022
5

9/10 always love hearing a Frank Zappa album don’t get me wrong, Sgt. Peppers is one of my favorite albums but it’s so much fun hearing these guys parody it

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Sat Nov 19 2022
5

I'm convinced Zappa's brain must've naturally produced too much DMT or something. He didn't need to use them to get it. For someone who not only didn't use, but despised psychedelic drugs and its entire culture, he truly made some of the greatest psychedelic music this world has ever seen, and this unique work is absolutely no exception. "What's there to live foooorr"

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Thu Dec 08 2022
5

Frank Zappa was a genius and every musician top shelf. Best, the attack on hippie culture is ruthlessly hilarious.

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Wed Mar 29 2023
5

I don't know what else there is to say about Zappa...

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Wed Mar 29 2023
5

Yes boys and girls this album was done without the use of drugs Frank Zappa was an amazing musician and composer. This album should be listened to multiple times to get all the lyrical inside jokes and the complexity of the music To use a late 60’s phrase, this album was a mind blower

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Mon Apr 03 2023
5

First, the label's inversion of the artwork was and always will be bullshit. This is not just the proper cover but the better cover. And a better indication of what you're about to get. Which is absolute madcap genius and blazing satire. This is my absolute favourite Zappa album, easy. Brilliant takedowns of hippies, right-wingers and the LAPD. There is a lot going on throughout and some of the transitions and oddities will likely drive many folks a bit bonkers, but I think it just makes the whole thing all the more brilliant.

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Wed Apr 05 2023
5

Loved it! I enjoy good avant garde rock music and Frank Zappa is the best at it.

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Fri May 26 2023
5

Zappa! Experimentation and commentary. Awesome album.

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Fri Jun 02 2023
5

lets make the water turb balck

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Mon Jun 12 2023
5

This was a totally wild, crazy psychedelic trip that had me excited and delighted throughout!

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Mon Jun 12 2023
5

OMG! This was amazing for the moment that I listened. I can’t quite describe it…it elevated my current state to something euphoric and I want to stay here forever..except that I want all my friends and loved ones with me!!!!

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Tue Oct 24 2023
5

Pretty great stuff here. 5 stars.

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Wed Nov 01 2023
5

I always enjoy the disorienting nature of Frank Zappa albums and this one is no exception. This album is mostly a send up of late 1960s hippie culture and (rightly) critiques its superficiality and lack of nuance while wrapping the whole thing up in a delightfully experimental package punctuated by vocal effects, spoken word parts, and sound collages. The effect is overwhelming, funny, and remains relevant today.

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Wed Nov 29 2023
5

zappa is an acquired taste and i have acquired that taste. this album is really smart, really funny, really wild, and genuinely a fun, frenetic listen. zappa pushed the limits on what rock and roll music was, and is. i suspect that most people will not get this album or will find it annoying and weird, which, fair enough. i appreciate zappa's zanyness, his avant-garde flair, and the point he was trying to make about how society handles social issues, which i think still stands true to today.

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Mon Dec 04 2023
5

I don't do publicity balling for you anymore The first word in this song is "discorporate, " it means to leave your body Discorporate and come with me Shifting, drifting Cloudless, starless Velvet valleys and a sapphire sea Unbind your mind There is no time to lick your stamps And paste them in Discorporate and we'll begin Flower power sucks Zappa stands alone. This album is very much a response to the time it was created, but it stands up 55 years later. 5/5

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Thu Feb 15 2024
5

Oh, this one is perfect in every tiny psychedelic detail. Great!

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Fri Feb 16 2024
5

Not For Me™️ The steely dan biography was actually written about mothers of invention

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Thu Feb 22 2024
5

I got into Zappa at the perfect time. The summer before college. I wish I could Eternal Sunshine this album out of my mind so I could hear it again for the first time. Wonder what I would think…

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Sun Mar 03 2024
5

The first real conceptual rock album? Biting satire and social commentary? Making fun of hippies (bums - bad karma thing to do)? This album has it all and is an absolute masterpiece. Zappa was a genius

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Sun Mar 31 2024
5

I listened to this album so many times in high school and college that, even after not listening to it for at least 10 years, I was able to hum and sing along to every song. Great album. Satirical lyrics aside, Zappa was an excellent musical craftsman. These are really more like musical vignettes, but there's so much here in terms of melody, harmony, and instrumentation, mixing doo-wop with rock and jazz and everything in between. Excellent blast from the past.

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Mon May 06 2024
5

bem trippy e experimental pra epoca, gosteimas pode ter sido a maconha 5 estralas

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Fri May 31 2024
5

Sehr speziell. Das ist so schräg, dass es schon wieder toll ist. Ein ganzes Album wie „A Day In The Life“.

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Mon Aug 29 2022
4

Hi i'm Jimmy Carl Black and I'm the Indian of the group Prefs: Who Needs The Peace Corps?, Concentration Moon, Mom & Dad, Bow Tie Daddy, Harry, You're a Beast, What's The Ugliest Part of Your Body?, Absolutely Free, Flower Punk, Let's Make the Water Turn Black, The Idiot Bastard Son, Lonely Little Girl, Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance, What's The Ugliest Part of Your Body (Reprise), Mother People Moins pref: Nasal Retentive Calliope Music

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Wed Sep 14 2022
4

I'm so confused. The first Mothers of Invention album I got made me so irrationally angry. But then I got "Hot Rats", and I found it one of the greatest things I'd ever heard. I thought I just liked Zappa instrumentally and that was it. But no, actuality, I really enjoyed the Mothers this time around. I feel like the jokes worked a lot better here. An acquired taste?

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Fri Sep 30 2022
4

Nach dem offensichtlichen Schrott der letzten Wochen ist dies eine Wohltat. Zappa halt.

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Thu Oct 06 2022
4

This was the shit I was afraid of when we started this project. Listened to this at 11pm at night while outside walking my dog. Went to bed. Nightmares. Great in a weird way. What an experience. Amazing work

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Thu Oct 13 2022
4

Massive trip, a strong contender for the definition of cool conversation/argument

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Mon Oct 31 2022
4

Što se mene tiče, može biti i cijela njegova diskografija. Ovo je itekakva satira i sprdnja na glazbu 60-ih, ali ponajviše na Fab Four iliti Bitlse.

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Wed Nov 16 2022
4

Probably my second favorite of Zappa's next to "Absolutely Free." I like him in this manic kitchen sink mode best. Though it's a real wooden rollercoaster of an album and there are all these bizarre interludes throughout, he's still keeping it relatively tight. If you don't like something, he's shortly onto the next idea. Whereas on something like "Uncle Meat" it just gets too self indulgent and becomes a mess. Always appreciate his bravery in experimentation, total embrace of humor, and willingness to call things as he sees them.

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Wed Nov 16 2022
4

Takes real vision and courage to make an album that sounds like this. It seems a bit cynical, which I'm less interested in, but the freedom with which this album bounces from one motif to another, yet stays cohesive and keeps a thread throughout is remarkable.

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Wed Nov 23 2022
4

One of my favorites of Zappa’s.

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Thu Dec 01 2022
4

Por alguna razón, vino justo cuando necesitaba escuchar algo así 🥴

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Thu Dec 22 2022
4

Ok this is the second album from these guys here. This one was done way better - mostly because he was taking potshots at the hippies, and that's something I can stand behind completely. It sounded like late 60s bullshit but the lyrics turned it into something far better. I know Zappa is a hipster darling these days but I have to give this a 4/5 for being one of the best pisstakes I've ever heard. Can't give it the full 5 because some of it was just annoying (see: the last "song") but I was tempted.

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Fri Dec 30 2022
4

What a ride this one was. Probably the weirdest album so far but if you ignore the tracks that are just speech or noise, you are actually left with some good psychedelic rock songs with funny/satirical and most importantly entertaining lyrics. This is definitely an album that you either love or completely hate but I'm willing to give this some credit

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Wed Jan 04 2023
4

What a weird, wild, unique and fascinating album. Bizarrely poetic and literate lyrics that takes jabs at EVERYONE and does so with irreverance and biting dark humour. Musically the styles, production and arrangements are all ove the place but mostly interesting and engaging. My favorite Zappa album that I've heard so far and one that I think will remain in my rotation for a little while at least. As I type this is my 3rd listen. 4 stars

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Wed Jan 11 2023
4

Hippies suck, Frank is great. Not my favorite Zappa record but it's still good. It might be his most accessible album as there aren't a lot of long instrumentals that might put off some listeners.

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Wed Feb 15 2023
4

Side one is a brilliant takedown of 1967 and the hippie movement. Zappa the satirist at the peak of his snide powers. It even has some catchy tunes. It gets a little self-indulgent on the second side, but overall this is one of the best records he ever made.

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Thu Feb 23 2023
4

In the first half of the album I thought there wouldn't be anything I'd like. But it got progressively better. Very, veeery experimental, psychedelic rock, so good stuff overall! You also have to admire the dig at Beatles here lol Saved tracks: What's The Ugliest Part Of Your Body?, Absolutely Free, Let's Make The Water Turn Black, Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance

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Fri Feb 24 2023
4

For a man who had no truck with drugs Frank Zappa sure did produce music that sounds exactly as if it's intended to be listened to while on drugs. I haven't listened to this one much before, and there's a _lot_ going on, so it would probably benefit from more listens. Still, a lot of fun! Fave track - "Let's Make the Water Turn Black" is the one I was most familiar with already. Also really enjoyed "Absolutely Free" running into "Flower Punk"...

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Fri Feb 24 2023
4

This was a good fun ablum with heaps of great tracks like Who Needs The Peace Corps?, What's the Ugliest Part Of Your Body, Flower Punk, Lets' Make The Water Turn Black, and Lonely Little Girl.

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Sun Mar 12 2023
4

I enjoy the playfulness on display quite a bit. Maybe a bit too much in places, but overall a great album.

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Sun Mar 12 2023
4

Wild, unfiltered, and unashamedly blitzing. Sometimes it can be a little too much for me, but nobody does "too much" quite like Zappa.

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Mon Mar 13 2023
4

A little mainstream, straightforward and poppy for my tastes. Usually find Zappa impenetrable, then he does this, what an enigma, eh?

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Mon Mar 20 2023
4

Surprised it’s pretty good, crazy though

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Fri Mar 31 2023
4

Harry, You're A Beast reminds me of the short film Possibly In Michigan. I think this album is the closest I'll get to understanding how it feels to be on whatever drugs they took while making it.

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Sun Apr 02 2023
4

Beautifully weird. Song titles great, as usual. Some interesting use of the stereo balance. Way ahead of the curve on the ASMR trend. Just too disjointed in places to be a 5 - i couldn't listen to it every day!

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Sun Apr 09 2023
4

A parody album shouldn’t be this good, Frank Zappa is a genius, anyone attempting a parody of Stg Pepper would need to be for it to work and this does. Not an accessible album but worth a few listens to get it. A few parts just a bit too odd for my taste to give this full marks.

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Fri Apr 14 2023
4

Sàtira i experiment. Els primers discos de Zappa rebosaven de tots dos conceptes i ho feien amb una inspiració reservada només pels genis. No tot el minutatge té la mateixa qualitat -cap al final de la segona part del disc la cosa afluixa bastant- però continua sent un dels exemples més representatius de la millor innovació artística dels '60

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Fri Apr 21 2023
4

Thus shit is weird in the best possible way

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Tue Apr 25 2023
4

Bizarre and unusual, parody this may be but talent abounds.

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Thu Apr 27 2023
4

I have a feeling this record will be divisive, and all I can really say is, "Well, I like it." Nobody really does "freak out" like Zappa and co., where every song is about as tight as you can get it before bursting, while also seeming very free-wheeling and spur-of-the-moment. Favorite tracks: "Concentration Moon", "Flower Punk", "The Idiot Bastard Son", "Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance"

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Mon May 01 2023
4

Disco conceptual en su máxima expresión, grabado como un continuo sin diferenciación entre las canciones. Experimental y atrevido, pop psicodélico, donde la gracia está sobre todo en el discurso, que se pierde si no controlas el idioma.

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