E-mail this story
Vibes Dispatch: Zappa Plays Zappa
Dweezil Zappa chose some of the more dance-friendly tracks from his father's catalogue -- "Apostrophe," "City of Tiny Lights," "Trouble Every Day, others -- and we appreciated it. He toggled between a nasty guitar tone and a bunch of others, a MIDI-ish sax sound in a couple of places. (It'd be stupid to say how great his band is, because they have to be. But it should be said anyway.) He stretched out and got comfortable on more than a few long, FZ-like guitar explorations over the typical one- or two-chord vamps Frank loved so much, and he more than held his own; his is not the "any note is an acceptable not" school like FZ, but he's inventive and fluid and completely natural. He brought up a guest vocalist for "Debra Kadabra," a track from the Zappa/Beefheart album Bongo Fury, and it was a great, odd choice. Later in the set, Dweezil set down his Gibson SG and picked up an Eddie Van Halen-like Charvel, painted black and yellow, then played a note-for-note "Eruption," and a blonde-wigged dude in tight rainbow spandex emerged, introduced himself as "David Lee Sloth," and led the band into VH's "Somebody Get Me a Doctor." A guy next to me pointed out how Dweezil isn't trying to prove he's a genius like his father, but what he's doing is pretty spectacular. "And he's a killer guitar player." Yup.
By Michael Hamad
July 21, 2012