I was at this show yesterday but couldn't get into it. A more
positive review from another guy underneath to give you a neutral
They first showed the Film of Zappa in the Roxy back in 1974. Great
stuff and the sound was much better then the actual concert of ZPZ.
The concert was in sound and in performance miles away from the Zappa
movie we just saw. I know this concerthall has very bad soundings but
I've seen many groups here who did a lot better. I've seen Frank
playing in 1988 in the Veledrome in Gent in a concerthall he
described as the worst ever played. But he also said that they would
play at a quiet volume so that everything would be alright again, as
it effectively was. I have the tape so I can even tell know that it
sounded ok. Now in Vorst you couln'dt hear all the instruments very
well, the bass sometimes was on mess of a sound, the keyboards were
on and of, etc. When Terry began to sing, no voice. Was the soundman
Enough about the sound. The band wasn't a band. They weren't
together. As stated below they had to warm up during the first set.
But is was Terry who pulled the second set together with his heavy
drumming (he lost two drumsticks in the act) and cheerfull singing.
When he went away even Steve Vai (with short hair) couldn't pulled
the thing back together. It dropped again like pudding.
Also Dweezil is no frontman, Ahmet can but he was nowhere to be seen
(and he's damn right not be part of this were only in it for the
money tour - comment I heard on the spot). I've seen AZ/DZ and they
were great, also they had Mike Kenaelly and Scott Tunis back then.
Dweezil stood there, not moving a lot and saying little and the
things he said were so rehearsed and cliche that it made me sick.
During King Kong they did some improvisations like Zappa did in the
movie (that's what Dweezil said they were gonna do). This was not a
spontanious thing. I've got many live recordings of Zappa. Now
Dweezil must have acces to a lot more. He took some parts and put
them together without shaking the coctail. During the keyboarsolo
every band member stood playing looking at thsi guy without showing
any enthousiasm. Only the bassplayer and Napoleon jumped to the
music. I think Mike Kenaelly would have done a better job moulding
the band together and leading them thru wild improvisations instead
of showing all the tricks Zappa did in a row.
Not that they are no good musiscians, they are, but they try to copy
Zappas' act, wich is foolisch to attempt. I'd rather have a personel
stamp on the performance wich Dweezil said in interviews he would do.
Seen nothing of that. Even the setlist is almost the same every
night. Even the effects and the kind of gitaarsolo's he plays are the
same. Just seen the solo from Inca Roads on the net and live it was
the same. Is he afraid or insicure?
Anyway, I love Zappa, I love AZ/DZ, I Love the muffin man, The
grandmothers, etc, But this was beyond my expectations. Finally we
left after Montana. Yes indeed we left the concert.
If the accoustics were better it would have been a lot more
enjoyable. It could have inflicted the band's performance. Also the
hall was only half filled. They had to hang curtains around the
higher levels (a full hall would also give better accoustics-I know).
If ZPZ had only chosen the Ancienne Belgique. It would have been
completely sold out but far more superior to this hall.
Here's the setlist
Help, I'm a Rock
Hungry Freaks, Daddy
Let's Make the Water Turn Black
Idiot Bastard Son
King Kong with Filthy Habits
Don't Eat the Yellow Snow
St-Alphonzo's Pancake Breakfast
-This first half was all with Napoleon.
I'm so Cute (TB)
Trying to grow a Chin (TB)
City of Tiny Lights (TB+NMB)
Punky's Whips (TB)
The Black Page pt. 1 (TB)
The Black Page pt. 2 (TB+ SV)
Peaches en Regalia (SV+NMB)
Village of the Sun (SV+NMB)
Echidna's Arf (of you) (SV+NMB)
Zomby Woof (SV+NMB)
Camarillo Brillo (NMB)
The Orange Couty Lumber Truck (NMB)
Trouble Every Day (TB+SV+NMB)
A Token of his Extreme (TB+SV+NMB)
Barry's Imaginary Publisher Says:
May 31st, 2006 at 11:28 am
And now the points of the Belgian jury
The venue: Vorst Nationaal, May 30.
As you may know, the sound of this concert hall is, shall we
say, "less than optimal", and quite possibly a bit of a nightmare for
the soundguy. We had seats directly behind the mixing booth so what
we heard was probably "as good as it gets".
The setlist: exactly the same as wannabeard posted above.
The band: I was really impressed and pleasantly surprised. From the
first note to the last, the playing was flawless and incredibly tight
(and indeed, "heavy", as Balint noted above). A definite strongholder
within the band is Napoleon M Brock. He gave warmth to the songs
and "a face" to the band. Had a bit of trouble getting the high tones
at times, but considering he's doing vocals originally done by the
likes of FZ, George Duke and Andrew Belew: who can blame him!
Dweezil: definitely has all the guitar chops, did some great FZ style
solo's and his overall guitarwork on the tunes was fabulous. Not so
much a frontman though (this is not criticism mind you, it's
observation). Which leads me to the one small minor point of this
this tour: although the music and the performance is quite simply
superb in every way, there's an element of interaction missing (and I
guess we all know what/who that element is
Steve Vai: I'm not a big fan of his 200-notes-per-second playing
style, but I must say he was a very competent side-man to Dweezil.
Didn't attempt to steal the show, a good complemental team-player so
Ah, and Terry Bozzio! Did a fantastic drum-duet with Joe Travers (who
himself amazed me with just how good his drumming was). Bozzio's drum
sounded a bit too bassy to me in comparison with Travers', but hey,
that's just naggin'.
Kudos to all the other players as well: impeccable timing, excellent
musicianship with extra points to the bass-player for ENTHOUSIASM!
Favorites: the first half of the concert needed some warming up but
things got hot as of Florentine Pogen. Punky's Whips: how great to
see this performed by the man himself (TB); ditto The Black Page (I,
II): fabulous! Echidna's Arf (Of You): it's always been one of my
favorite tracks, and the performance here was very, very tight.
So there you have it. I'm very glad I didn't miss the opportunity to
see these guys. To the NaySayers I would say: reconsider. Give this
band a chance. They more than deserve it. Music Is The Best!
Now if you'll excuse me: I'm very. Tired. Meeting up with some KUR
readers before and after the show may have something to do with it
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