Beat Instrumental


Established in May 1963 as Beat Monthly. From #18 the title was changed to Beat Instrumental Monthly, and abbreviated to Beat Instrumental from #37. Emphasizing musical instruments and equipment (it billed itself as "The World's First Group & Instrumental Magazine"), Beat Instrumental was among the first to publish interviews with musicians discussing their gear. The magazine also defined pop music more widely than many of its contemporaries. Later on, the magazine made seamless transitions from pop to rock and prog-rock. (BeatBooks)
In August 1980 it was merged with Sound International, which until July 1981 was published under the title Sound International incorporating Beat Instrumental.

1966 December

No. 44

The 'Unbelievably Awful' Mothers of Invention
By Pete Green, p 39

  THE guy representing the Mothers of Invention in America sent me a copy of their "freak-out", psychedelic LP and said: "These Mothers are THE current 'happening' on Sunset Strip. Their appearance is unbelievably awful. The colouring on the album cover has been diffused and the outline of their features blurred to conceal the true horror of their physical impact". (read more)

Source: slime.oofytv.set

1967 April

No. 48

Freak Out - Mothers Of Invention VLP 9154 (review)
By ?, p 36

  We've heard a great deal about the American two-album version. Here in Britain we've wound up with just one album containing 11 tracks. They are well chosen and are representative of a good, double discer.

The first thing you must decide before even dropping the needle into the freaky grooves is how you are going to take the record and what you hear on it. It should be regarded as a musical form of "Batman", and the same rules of attitude exist. If you take it seriously then you won't get any enjoyment from it, and will dismiss it as rubbish. But if, on the other hand, you retain your sense of humour, you'll like it. The whole record is a deliberate send-up of the trashy American pop scene with here and there, sexual connotations and some vague, social comment.

Musically, the album is well made and free-form passages can get under your skin. There is an excellent rock guitarist featured on the album.

Side One: Hungry Freaks Daddy; I Ain't Got No Heart; Who Are The Brain Police; Motherly Love; Wowie Zowie; You Didn't Try To Call Me; I'm Not Satisfied; You're Probably Wondering Why I'm Here.

Side Two: Trouble Comin' Everyday; Help. I'm A Rock; The Return Of Monster Magnet.

1968 July

No. 63

We're Only In It For The Money - Mothers Of Invention Verve VLP 9199 (review)
By John Ford, p 37

  Oh dear me, the Mothers are a naughty group. All dressed up in women's clothes for a crushing parallel of the "Sgt. Pepper" LP cover. But I don't think blue suits Frank Zappa, although his pinafore is a nice fit. And who is his hairdresser? If you're expecting a serious review, forget it when you see a selection of the titles. "What's The Ugliest Part Of Your Body", "Hot Poop", "The Idiot Bastard Son", etc., etc.

1968 December

No. 68

Lumpy Gravy - Frank Zappa Verve VLP 9223 (review)
By John Ford, p 40

  Is it because nobody but Frank Zappa understands Frank Zappa, that his records are so astonishingly strange? Can he seriously be making records just for himself? There seems to be no apparent significance in anything he does on this LP. Example – "Where can I get sympathy?" Answer – "From your local drugstore". Then a lot of silly noises. When he's making music, he's brilliant, but it's the rest. If he's advocating anything, perhaps he should do it in a stronger voice. He has the intelligence to say what he wants to precisely, but he seems to be completely indirect, following a lot of paths to no obvious end. This album, says Zappa, started out as a ballet. I still don't understand it, and perhaps he doesn't either.

1969 June

No. 74

L.P. Reviews - Mothermania
By John Ford, p 44

Stateside Report - Zappa's Empire
p 21

Subtitled the Best of the Mothers' this album includes highspot tracxs from the Mothers' first two LP mainly, and for those who haven't bought them this record is just what you need. The prospect of a Mothers' Best album was a bit worrying, but the tracks work out of the context of the original albums. A lot of people are getting on the freaky/social comment kick and most of them do it very badly or else act as a safety valve for society's frustrations in the manner of Punch or Private Eye. But Zappa is bitter as well as funny, and he means business. Yes, it is you he's talking about.

Zappa’s empire
Frank Zappa is slowly building himself an empire, judging from the latest project he’s started in America. With Herb Cohen, Zappa has launched a new independent label called Straight Records. This label will be separate from the Zappa-Cohen Bizarre label, distributed by Warner Bros. which the Mothers are new recording on. Among the artists signed to Bizarre are Tim Buckley and Judy Henske. both formerly with Elektra. The Mothers’ new Bizarre album Uncle Meat, the soundtrack for their yet-unfinished film, has been released.

Source: Barry Monks

1969 July

No. 75

Father Of The Mothers
By M.H., pp 26-28

YOU might think that Frank Zappa is a fearsome fellow from the wild hairy being in photographs, the cutting nastiness of his songs and the god-like aura that surrounds him. It’s not his fault that he is regarded in this way – it’s the result of the publicity and unthinking adulation of some Mothers of Invention fans. In fact, he turns out to be a friendly, mild-mannered fellow, with a cutting tongue to be sure, but he doesn’t cut everything and everyone indiscriminately. (read more)

Source: slime.oofytv.set

1969 August

No. 76

L.P. Reviews - Uncle Meat
By John Ford, p 44

  It’s impossible to give an adequate review of a Mothers double album in this space, but here’s something: recorded 18 months ago; shows Mothers moving to new ground, music not words to the fore; nearly all instrumental; if any “pop” artist has written a symphony it is Zappa and he is not a “pop” artist; includes Mothers rendition of Louie Louie on Albert Hall organ and a whole side on King Kong; most of the music from Zappa’s unfinished film Uncle Meat; words from Susie Creemcheese and Ian Underwood; God Bless America live at the Whiskey A Go Go; hear Mr. Green Genes; if you accept concepts such as “way out music” like the ads say, then this is way out; if not it is a natural progression from Lumpy Gravy (ignoring the sidestep of Ruben) and is near what the Mothers did on stage on their recent tour; if you can’t be bothered to sit and really listen to good music, then you should be bothered.

Source: Barry Monks

1969 December

No. 80

L.P. Reviews - Trout Mask Replica
By John Ford, p 52

  Well, well, well! I mean where do you start? HM! Right here is the review: – What music there is on this double Beefheart offering can best be described as ..... there. The instruments played are glass finger guitar, flute, steel appendage guitar, bass clarinet, tenor and soprano sax, and bass. For people who dig Beefheart and where he's at, this record is great. For those who don't – keep taking the tablets.

Source: Barry Monks

1970 April

No. 84

Hot Rats, Frank Zappa
By ?, p 60

Permanent Damage, The GTOs
By ?, p 61

[1] This is the best record Frank Zappa has ever made, and his first since he broke up the Mothers of Invention. There are no 1950's greasy rock 'n' roll tunes here, and none of Zappa's heavily orchestrated neo-classical music. Instead we have a studio jam session which allows Zappa to take off on long flights of wah wah guitar, rising and falling above a solid groundwork of bass and drums. Ian Underwood (ex-Mothers) provides harmony in the choruses on reeds and keyboard, and also blows some very fine solos on saxophone. Likewise with Sugar Cane Harris (who?) on violin. Zappa's mate, Captain Beefheart, sings on Willie The Pimp, which is the only vocal. In general the music is avant-garde, often freaky, but instantly groovable, and the excellent cover goes to make Hot Rats among the best sounds released this year. Lovely.

[2] GTO stands for Girls Together Outrageously, which just about sums up this album. Basically, the GTOs are five chicks who spend their time hanging round the West Coast rock scene getting into the stars, or rather, getting the stars into them. Frank Zappa seems to have rounded them up and got them in a recording studio long enough to make this record, most of which is fragmented pieces of conversation describing the traumatic sexual experiences of Misses Pamela, Sandra, Cinderella, Christine and Mercy. There are also a few songs, some of which are quite good, with a few bits of nice guitar work thrown in for luck. As a guide to the inside of a groupy's head the LP is quite interesting, but like the girls themselves, one fears, it gets very boring after a few spins.

Part of the Stateside Report, page 9 [...] Releases by the Mothers continue; their latest Bizarre LP is Burnt Weenie Sandwich. The Mothers are now working individually on new projects: Zappa is producing for his labels, working on film and television projects, and writing arrangements for a new album by French jazz violinist Jean Luc Ponty; Ian Underwood is readying material for a solo LP; Roy Estrada, Bunk Gardner, Buzz Gardner and Art Tripp are doing studio work in Hollywood; Motorhead Sherwood will star in a film with Captain Beefheart; and Jimmy Carl Black (Indian of the group) has formed a group of his own, suitably titled Geronimo Black. [...]


1970 May

No. 85

FZ featured on the cover and on page 56 short notice on Burnt Weeny Sandwitch. No other Zappa content.

1970 August

No. 88

Zappa with Mothers
p 22

An Evening With Wild Man Fischer
p 60

On page 22 is short notice, that Zappa & The Mothers will have a session in Trident Studios. Many years later in 2020, these sessions were published as The Mothers 1970 4 CD box.

Source: worldradiohistory

1972 January

No. 105

Being Perfectly Frank
By Steve Turner, pp 22-24

Frank Zappa was staying at the London hotel which possesses the actual loo shown on his internationally famous poster. When I arrived at the reception area I phoned his room: "George Harrison and Friends Mortuary House", came the quick reply which at least assured me that I'd dialed the right number. It was some unscripted humour from Mark Volman and after a quick word with Frank he invited me up to the second floor. (read more)

Source: slime.oofytv.set

1972 August

No. 111

Just Another Band From L.A.
By ?, p 68

Page 68: The Mothers seem to be in grave danger of living up to the title of their latest album. This record like the last one, and the one before that, consists of improvised 'humour' spoken over improvised 'music'. If you are someone who's impressed by a man saying f--k on a long playing record then this one's for you. You'll be quite impressed by Zappa. Very funny at the time it was recorded I'm sure but not worth the trouble of preserving it in this way - let alone actually selling it. Only in it for the money?

On pages 22-25 is article "The other man in Alice Cooper's life" containing some Zappa references.
Page 23: Alice was more explicit. 'I don't think Zappa really knew if we could play music or not,' he explained. 'I think he was more interested in the kind of negative image of us he could project. He maybe wanted to use us to turn people off. He put us on his label as outrageous people. He didn't understand us, and we ended up producing ourselves.
'I really wish the numbers and arrangements had been better produced. In fact, we'd like to go back to the studio some time and re-record it. The production was bad because it was our first time in the studio.
'Don't get me wrong. I like Frank a lot. He's such a good guy, and it really wasn't his fault. Maybe he just got lost in what we were trying to do.'


1973 February

No. 117

Grand Wazoo
By Steve Turner, p 70

On the inside of this cover is the legend of Cleetus Awreetus-Awrightus, the Funky Emperor, together with the illusionary arch villain, Mediocrates of Pedestrium, and many others. You either like or hate Zappa and his music. Nevertheless, there is a notable gathering of musicians on this album and the end product has a more orchestral flavour than one has come to expect in recent times. In fact it sounds more early than late. Incidentally, Uncle Meat gets a mention too.

Source: slime.oofytv.set

1975 September

No. 148

My Beef - the captain reveals all!
By G.R.C., p 41


1977 January

No. 123

Frank Zappa: Zoot Allures
By Peter Douglas, p 51

Vintage stuff. Don't play it in front of your parents. (read more)


1977 March

No. 125

Frank Zappa
By Steve Rosen, pp 4-11

This is a reprint of the classical Steve Rosen interview that originally appeared in Guitar Player, January 1977. For some reason the author here is named Charles Stevenson.

Source: slime.oofytv.set

1978 June

No. 140

Frank Zappa: Zappa In New York
By Peter Douglas, p 47

It's taken an extra month to see whether this is actually as bad as they said it was. The verdict? Probably not. From my own point of view, having seen Zappa twice recently, the material was familiar, and hence was low on surprises – and surprises being an essential ingredient of this strange man's appeal, it might have seemed a bit of a letdown. (read more

p 3 p 47


1978 December

No. 125

Frank Zappa: Studio Tan
By Peter Douglas, p 52

Folks, it's time to heave an enormous sigh and cast our minds back to times long gone. In those days Frank was an optimistic, wide-eyed young cynic with all the world at his feet. In 1966 he provided us with Freak Out! – an album so shocking in the year of Revolver that it only sold to those with warped minds. In 1967 he went further. He gave us We're In It For The Money. Frank was so hip back then. He hated hippies before Johnny Rotten was even born. (read more

p 7 p 52