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Frank Zappa’s extensive vault release continues with Meat Light, Chicago ’78 and Little Dots, on November 4

The Zappa Family Trust is continuing its excavation and rescue of the vast musical treasures buried in Frank Zappa’s extensive vault and will release the highly-anticipated albums, Meat Light, Chicago ’78 and Little Dots, on November 4 via Zappa Records/UMe/Universal Music. Zappa’s seminal band The Mothers Of Invention’s experimental double-album Uncle Meat will receive the Project/Object Audio Documentary deluxe treatment as Meat Light, a three-disc set that includes the original 1969 vinyl mix (restored, remastered and available on CD and digitally for the first time), Zappa’s never-before-released original sequence and a variety of unreleased rare alternate mixes, live performances, and studio session outtakes. Chicago ’78 continues Zappa’s Vaulternative Records live releases with an incredible previously unreleased concert recorded at the Uptown Theater in Chicago on September 29, 1978, captured here in its entirety. Little Dots, the sequel to 2006’s fan-favorite Imaginary Diseases, features additional hand-picked selections from the Maestro himself of the 10-piece horn-driven ensemble ‘Petit Wazoo’ tour of late 1972. All albums are available for pre-order now.

Meat Light sheds and shines a light on Zappa’s 1969 avant-garde opus Uncle Meat, an album created with The Mothers Of Invention to serve as the soundtrack to a film that was not finished until the ‘80s. One of the last releases that Zappa’s late wife Gail Zappa worked on with Vaultmeister Joe Travers, the three-disc Project/Object Audio Documentary Deluxe Edition collects the original 1969 vinyl mix of the album with the original sequence Zappa conceived before he turned it into the masterwork along with unique source material and bonus vault tracks mostly compiled from the recording sessions at Apolostic Studios in NYC between 1967-68. Long hailed for its innovation and experimentation, Zappa experimented with tape speed, overdubbing and a collage of sounds. As he wrote in the original liner notes: “The music on this album was recorded over a period of 5 months from October 1967 to February 1968. Things that sound like a full orchestra were carefully assembled, track by track through a procedure known as overdubbing. The weird middle section of DOG BREATH (after the line, “Ready to attack”) has forty tracks built into it. Things that sound like trumpets are actually clarinets played through a Maestro with a setting labeled Oboe D’Amore and sped up a minor third with a V.S.O. (variable speed oscillator).” “Uncle Meat documents the original Mothers at the telepathic height of their musical powers,” exclaimed Dangerous Minds. “The album’s aural collage of short, sharp shocks of avant garde musical interludes, doo-wop, free jazz, spoken word bits, cartoony music and far-out concert recordings were the fullest expression at that point of the young composer’s genius.”

Recorded September 29, 1978 at the Uptown Theatre in Chicago, the aptly-titled two-disc album, Chicago ’78, captures in great sound quality the second of two shows played that night in its entirety, a rarity for Zappa recordings. The concert delivers with a good blend of fan favorites, blistering guitar solos, audience participation, on-the-spot improvisations and stellar playing from Zappa and his talented band. Notably, the album includes rare live versions of “Yo Mama” and “Strictly Genteel” and a spontaneous improv by Zappa where he plays riffs that would end up turning into the future songs “I’m A Beautiful Guy” and “Crew Slut.” Due to only having one tape machine rolling at a time and the length of the recording time, the live performance was recorded on three different sources. In order to present this show in its entirety, it was culled from the three different sources: Main Source: ½-inch 4-Track analog tape masters; Secondary sources: ¼-inch 2-Track reel to-reel analog tape masters and a board cassette. All tapes were heat-treated and transferred at 96K 24B .WAV by Joe Travers.

Long sought after by fans, Little Dots is the sequel to Imaginary Diseases. It consists of additional music compiled from master tapes hand-picked and worked on by Zappa himself of the “Petit Wazoo,” a short-lived 10-piece ensemble with an emphasis on brass and woodwind instrumentation that toured North America in late October-December 1972. All masters were transferred at The Utility Muffin Research Kitchen in 2004. Most of these performances were scattered amongst various reels, some incomplete, all found in The Vault. Zappa would work with material from this line-up on and off, but nothing was ever officially released during his lifetime. Recorded live with the horn-driven ensemble, this collection includes the first legitimate release of the entire three-part “Rollo” suite for the first time as well as the title track composition. “Cosmik Debris” is the first version which predates the issued master on APOSTROPHE(’) in 1974. The album ends with a mammoth 25-minute long improvisation recorded in Columbia, S.C.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Zappa’s first-ever single, “How Could I Be Such A Fool,” the song will be released b/w “Help I’m A Rock (3rd Movement: It Can’t Happen Here)” on 7-inch pink vinyl for Record Store Day’s Black Friday on November 25.

Released in theaters in June to rave reviews, Sony Pictures Classics’ feature documentary, “Eat That Question,” was released September 27 on Blu-ray, DVD and digital. Told solely through rare and never before seen historic footage of Frank Zappa’s highly acclaimed 30-year career, this unique 90-minute documentary is an energetic celebration of an often outspoken but brilliant musician. Unforgettable Zappa interviews and performances from one of rock and roll’s most legendary self-taught musicians have been painstakingly gathered across decades by director Thorsten Shütte from the obscure vaults of TV stations around the world to create this unparalleled look at one of the brightest minds popular music has ever witnessed.

For those not knowing where to start in Zappa’s vast catalog or for fans wanting some of their favourite Zappa material on one disc, ZAPPAtite – Frank Zappa’s Tastiest Tracks, was  released in September. The 18-track album collects some of Zappa’s best known and beloved compositions, from his early psychedelic rock beginnings to his avant-garde experimentation, jazz-rock explorations, symphonic suites and satirical send-ups, compiling them into one easily digestible collection and offering key entryways into the many musical worlds of the visionary musician.

Meat Light Track Listing

Disc 1: Original 1969 Vinyl Mix

  1. Uncle Meat: Main Title Theme
  2. The Voice Of Cheese
  3. Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution
  4. Zolar Czackl
  5. Dog Breath, In The Year Of The Plague
  6. The Legend Of The Golden Arches
  7. Louie Louie (At the Royal Albert Hall in London)
  8. The Dog Breath Variations
  9. Sleeping In A Jar
  10. Our Bizarre Relationship
  11. The Uncle Meat Variations
  12. Electric Aunt Jemima
  13. Prelude To King Kong
  14. God Bless America (Live at the Whisky A Go Go)
  15. A Pound For A Brown On The Bus
  16. Ian Underwood Whips It Out (Live on stage in Copenhagen)
  17. Mr. Green Genes
  18. We Can Shoot You
  19. If We’d All Been Living In California…
  20. The Air
  21. Project X
  22. Cruising For Burgers
  23. King Kong (as played by the Mothers in a studio)
  24. King Kong (it’s magnificence as interpreted by Dom DeWild)
  25. King Kong (as Motorhead explains it)
  26. King Kong (the Gardner Varieties)
  27. King Kong (as played by 3 deranged Good Humor Trucks)
  28. King Kong (live on a flat bed diesel in the middle of a race track at a Miami Pop Festival…the Underwood ramifications)

Disc 2: Original Sequence

Part One

  1. Dog Breath, In The Year Of The Plague
  2. The Legend Of The Golden Arches
  3. The Voice Of Cheese
  4. Whiskey Wah
  5. Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution
  6. Louie Louie (Live at the Royal Albert Hall in London)
  7. The Dog Breath Variations
  8. Shoot You Percussion Item

Part Two

  1. The Whip
  2. The Uncle Meat Variations
  3. King Kong

Part Three

  1. Project X Minus .5
  2. A Pound For A Brown On The Bus
  3. Electric Aunt Jemima
  4. Prelude To King Kong
  5. God Bless America (Live at the Whiskey A Go Go)
  6. Sleeping In A Jar
  7. Cops & Buns
  8. Zolar Czakl

Disc 3: Original Sequence (continued)

Part Four

  1. We Can Not Shoot You
  2. Mr. Green Genes
  3. PooYeahrg
  4. Uncle Meat: Main Title Theme
  5. Our Bizarre Relationship
  6. Later We Can Shoot You
  7. If We’d All Been Living In California…
  8. ‘Ere Ian Whips It/JCB Spits It/Motorhead Rips it
  9. The Air
  10. Project X .5
  11. Cruising For Burgers

From The Vault

  1. “A Bunch Of Stuff”
  2. Dog Breath (Single Version – Stereo)
  3. Tango
  4. The String Quartet*
  5. Electric Aunt Jemima (Mix Outtake)
  6. Exercise 4 Variant
  7. Zolar Czackl (Mix Outtake)
  8. “More Beer!”
  9. Green Genes Snoop
  10. Mr. Green Genes (Mix Outtake)
  11. Echo Pie
  12. 1/4 Tone Unit
  13. Sakuji’s March
  14. No. 4*
  15. Prelude To King Kong (Extended Version)*
  16. Blood Unit*
  17. My Guitar (Proto I- Excerpt)*
  18. Nine Types Of Industrial Pollution (Guitar Track, Normal Speed)
  19. Uncle Meat (Live at Columbia University 1969)
  20. Dog Breath (Instrumental)*
  21. The Dog Breath Variations (Mix Outtake)

*Mono

Little Dots Track Listing

  1. Cosmik Debris
  2. Little Dots (Part 1, Part 2)
  3. Rollo Includes: Rollo/The Rollo Interior Area/Rollo Goes Out
  4. Kansas City Shuffle
  5. ‘Columbia, S.C.’ (Part 1, Part 2)

Chicago ’78 Track Listing

Disc: 1

  1. Chicago Walk-On
  2. Twenty-One
  3. Dancin’ Fool
  4. Easy Meat
  5. Honey, Don’t You Want A Man Like Me?
  6. Keep It Greasy
  7. Village Of The Sun
  8. The Meek Shall Inherit Nothing
  9. Bamboozled By Love
  10. Sy Borg

Disc: 2

  1. Little House I Used To Live In
  2. Paroxysmal Splendor
  3. Yo Mama
  4. Magic Fingers
  5. Don’t Eat The Yellow Snow
  6. Strictly Genteel
  7. Black Napkins