Frank Zappa – The Time To Sing And Dance And Love (Godfather Records GR 668/669)

The Time To Sing And Dance And Love (Godfather Records GR 668/669)

Palace Theater, Providence, RI – October 24th, 1975

Disc 1 (67:17):  Naval Aviation In Art (through PA), Stinkfoot, Dirty Love, How Could I Be Such A Fool?, I Ain’t Got No Heart, I’m Not Satisfied, Black Napkins, Advance Romance, Honey Don’t You Want A Man Like Me?, The Illinois Enema Bandit, Carolina Hard-Core Ecstasy

Disc 2 (73:44):  Lonely Little Girl, Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance, What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body?, Chunga’s Revenge, drum solo, Zoot Allures, Swallow My Pride, Any Downers?, Camarillo Brillo, Muffin Man, San Ber’dino, I’m The Slime, Apostrophe, Duke Of Prunes vamp

The Time To Sing And Dance And Love contains the Lampinski recording of Frank Zappa’s October 24th 1975 show in Providence and fills a considerable need in documenting this well documented tour.  The sound quality is as good as the other tapes from this archive, having a wonderful three dimensional stereo effect with an almost perfect balance between music and audience response.  

There are a few minor drop-outs in the show, most notably in “The Illinois  Enema Bandit,” and splices in “Honey Don’t You Want A Man Like Me?,” the drum solo and “Apostrophe,” but nothing distracting or serious.

“Naval Aviation In Art” pumped through the PA is the introduction before “Stinkfoot,” the most common opener from this era.  He introduces the band, including himself as “David Cassidy,” and gives a short “poodle lecture.”  This excursion began to become part of the show about this time, and would be expanded as the tour moves along.

Speaking about poodles leads a segue into the disco “Dirty Love” from Overnite Sensation.  At the end of the song, as Frank is singing “the poodle bites / the poodle chews it” the rest of the band start barking like dogs.  Zappa speaks about the delicate matter of boy-girl gratification before the three song Freak Out section.    

Napoleon Brock sings “How Could I Be Such A Fool?” with the late-fifties and early sixties teen-crooner’s pleading.  The tune returns to the “Dirty Love” disco beat before Brock’s screeching vocals on “Ain’t Got No Heart” performed as on Tinseltown Rebellion.

A reviewer of this show relates an interesting observation when he writes that, “where all the guitar excitement comes in is during the songs I normally find myself snoozing through. ‘Advance Romance’ and ‘Illinois Enema Bandit’ are both GREAT! – long and varied and passionate and so full of energy that at times Frank seems eager to stop but apparently cannot find the brakes. ‘Illinois Enema Bandit’ is particularly tasty, with Frank dipping into a hippy-dippy style of playing I associate more with Jerry Garcia that anyone else. This solo is at times very melodic, with short ‘looped’ phrases that dance around the fretboard- light and airy- weaving in and out and through the percussive styling of Bozzio. This contrast with Frank’s typically aggressive and straightforward playing is awesome.

“‘Chunga’s Revenge’, ‘Zoot Allures,’ ‘Any Downers’ and ‘Black Napkins’ – the four songs which I would predict would be the definitive highlights of any given Fall ’75 show- are all disappointments on this night. “Any Downers” lacks the heavy metal guitar hysteria which makes the early October performances essential listening, and consists of nothing more that inane FZ rantings about gurus. The other three songs feature quite a bit of guitar, but are all particularly mellow, quite predictable, and at times, uninspired.

“‘Black Napkins’ sounds like a ‘Pink Napkins’ outtake, but without the airy delicacy nor the slow build-up to something meaningful. ‘Chunga’s Revenge’ finds Frank going solo- acapella- for a good couple minutes to start his solo, but again, he does not use this platform to build to any cathartic or exhilarating peak. He does throw in some ‘T’Mershi Duween’ quotes and a couple ‘Ship Ahoy’ flavorings, but this is stuff that has been done before, and done better. Finally, ‘Zoot Allures’ is its typical skeletal self, with some FZ deviations serving as a ‘solo,’ and that’s about it.”

The jamming in those songs may not be up to the standards of other shows, but there is still much of interest.  “Chunga’s Revenge” carries a standout keyboard performance from André.  Frank plays a bit of “Wipe Out” as a prelude to an insane Terry Bozzio drum solo used as a bridge into a wired “Zoot Allures.”  

The show ends with the unreleased “Swallow My Pride” and a short in the electricity in the venue.  The encores are perhaps the heaviest songs in the set with “Any Downers” and nasty versions of “Camarillo Brillo” and “Muffin Man.”  

The Time To Sing And Dance And Love comes packaged in a trifold gatefold sleeves with interesting Zappa photos from the era.  It is a good show, despite the reviewer’s opinion, and is an other very strong and recommended Godfather Frank Zappa release.   

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