Frank Zzzzzappa

By Robin Smith

Record Mirror, February 4, 1978

Frank Zappa
Hammersmith Odeon

Cosmic Time warp time at the Hammersmith Odeon, January 1978. The battered Afghans and RAF coats may be fading, but the spirit's not. They were packing 'em in, to the rafters an Monday night.

Zappa is broadly termed as being avant garde, more precisely, he farts around. He wandered around the stage droning into a microphone and doing strange things with his hands, before sitting down at odd intervals and smoking a cigarette. His Muppet-like band had a whale of a time as well, one holding up a 'no parking' placard that seemed to go down well with the audience and probably has some deep significance.

Naturally, no Zappa show would be complete without at least two references to rectums (I was going to use Frankie's actual words but they wouldn't let me). You couldn't hear his other asides too well because the sound was pretty bad. He did a song called 'I Have Been In You' that seemed to last for an intolerably long time. There seemed to be some dissention in the ranks of the hairy faithful. Looking around you could see a few yawns being stifled, hurriedly replaced by intense stares of undying interest.

Someone in the audience did shout out "what a load of b------s" sometime after the end of the first hour of the concert. He seemed to be making a fair point.