Album 0189: Frank Zappa – Joe’s Garage

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Release Date: 1979
Genre: Progressive Rock/Rock Opera

Tracklisting:

ACT I

1. The Central Scrutinizer (03:28)
2. Joe’s Garage (06:10)
3. Catholic Girls (04:20)
4. Crew Slut (06:38)
5. Fembot In A Wet T-Shirt (04:45)
6. On The Bus (04:32)
7. Why Does It Hurt When I Pee? (02:23)
8. Lucille Has Messed My Mind Up (05:43)
9. Scrutinizer Postlude (01:35)

ACT II

1. A Token Of My Extreme (05:30)
2. Stick It Out (04:34)
3. Sy Borg (08:56)
4. Dong Work For Yuda (05:04)
5. Keep It Greasey (08:22)
6. Outside Now (05:50)

ACT III

1. He Used To Cut The Grass (08:35)
2. Packard Goose (11:31)
3. Watermelon In Easter Hay (09:05)
4. A Little Green Rosetta (08:15)

Total Length: 01:55:14

The Central Scrutinizer serves as the intro to this huge album, setting the stage, tone, and story for the album. It has some neat instrumental bits, but I tend to ignore it when I want to hear this album. Joe’s Garage is the first actual song, and it is fantastic. The story it tells is good, and the music is fantastic. I love the little melody they keep repeating on various instruments, the “song that goes like…”. Just a fantastic start to the album. Catholic Girls is just plain classic Zappa, with ‘shocking’ lyrics and incredibly fun melodie, rhythms, and vocals that just make you want to put the song on repeat.

Crew Slut is kind of blues-y and also contains a ton of fun vocals. The song goes on just a tad bit long for my taste, but it’s still a really great song. Fembot In A Wet T-Shirt is mostly a pretty fun song, but I tend to usually skip to the next track once the actual wet t-shirt part starts. It’s not terrible, I would just rather get back to the music. On The Bus is a pretty good instrumental, not my favorite on the album though. Why Does It Hurt When I Pee? is actually pretty funny, and I enjoy the hell out of it. Just a very cool short song.

Lucille Has Messed My Mind Up is in a reggae flavor, and pretty emotional and just a very cool song. Scrutinizer Postlude concludes Act I, and again is something I tend to skip usually. It’s just the Scrutinizer talking for 95 seconds. Act II starts with the brilliant A Token Of My Extreme, which is not only incredibly fun musically, but the lyrics are a wonderful parody of Scientology. Stick It Out is also great, and wonderfully vulgar. I just love how upbeat this song is.

Sy Borg is a funky song that I’m just okay with. There is a reggae element that Lucille did better, and the extended instrumental section isn’t as good as others on this album, so I just kind of get tired of the song after a point. Dong Work For Yuda has a prison vibe and is a pretty cool song, though a tad bit forgettable. Keep It Greasey starts off pretty fun, but I am most definitely tired of the song by its end. Outside Now is a neat idea of a song, but I don’t really like the execution past the beginning.

Act III begins by way of He Used To Cut The Grass which is an extended instrumental that honestly does nothing for me. It’s done way better in two songs. Packard Goose is classic Zappa, a pretty much perfect song, I never mind the length of it. Watermelon In Easter Hay is also incredible. Essentially a 9-minute guitar solo, it’s still one of the best tracks on here, just incredibly emotional and fulfilling. A Little Green Rosetta is a fun ending track, it kind of gets up its own ass, but no biggie. I really do love this album, it’s a brilliant work with only a few points I don’t entirely care for. Seriously, go listen to it.

Final Rating: 9/10

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