Thursday, September 13, 2012

Broadway the Hard Way - Frank Zappa

This live album has one of the first Frank Zappa songs that I heard. Yes it's Jesus Thinks Your A Jerk. That is one of my favorite Zappa songs ever. This album has it's memories for me, even thought there is disapointment. I was looking forward to this album being amazing based off Why Don't You Like Me?, Jesus Thinks Your A Jerk, and Murdered By Numbers, I was wrong, kind of. At least the first time. I don't exactly know why, but even thought I know how I feel about this album, this is still a classic in my head. This was originally released on vinyl via mail order. When it was issued on CD there was bonus tracks not on the vinyl.
  1. Elvis Has Just Left The Building: This song starts ok. I don't think that it's anything mind blowing, but I think that it's ok. I think that this is an interesting song. I think it's nothing that is that crazy. I mean, It isn't as bad the second time through. I think that this is a pretty decent song
  2. Planet of the Baritone Women: This song has this type of like Egyptian feeling to it. I like this more than the last song, but I don't think that it's amazing. I do think the horns do sound pretty cool though. I don't like how Frank stopped the song to say who was singing. I mean it's what he wants, but that kind of bugs me about the '88 Tour. The fact that it was a joke, more so than before. 
  3. Any Kind Of Pain: This song, at least the beginning, kind of reminds me of like a Kenny G song. And not to be offensive, but Kenny's songs are very queer. By that I mean that it's like white jazz. After that thought it's kind of ok. Like the parts where he's not singing is where it reminds me of Kenny. I do like the pre-chorus though. I do like the distortion on the solo in this song. It's not terrible, but I don't like the sax in the song. But it's nothing that you can't get over after 2 or 3 listens.
  4. Dickie's Such An Asshole (The San Clemente Magnetic Deviation): I am not quite sure if I like this version, or You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore, Vol. 3 version more. I think they are both Ok, but I'm not quite sure.
  5. When the Lie's So Big: I like this song about as much as I like the last. I do enjoy it, but I'm not insane about it.
  6. Rhymin' Man: I like this song, but they also play about a dozen different melodies in the song. But I like the guys voice. He's the one who did the Ring of Fire cover on 1991's Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life. There is a part where they slid the keys and is sounds like a xylophone kinda, I really like that sound. They also use My Sharona in this song.
  7. Promiscuous: I think it's hilarious that this is like a hip-hop song. I think this is better than Run DMC and any otha rappa outt there. No but seriously, this song is pretty funny. I feel like this reminds me of Lazy Scranton from The Office.
  8. The Untouchables: I do like this song. I think it kind of sound like a Spy type song. I could kind of see the beginning of the song being in James Bond. I do know that there is part of the Hawaii Five-0 theme song, but I could still see this being in James Bond. This is one of my favorites song. I like Ike's voice in there too. I guess this is a cover.
  9. Why Don't You Like Me?: Tell Me You Love Me is such a fun song to probably play, espically with this variation. I got into this version before I heard both the 1970 Chunga's Revenge album version or the other live version off Tinsel Town Rebellion. I think it's hilarious that he's making fun of Michael. The lyrics are also pretty funny. My mom doesn't laugh at Michael Jackson jokes, but when she heard this, she laughed. This is a fun song that I could see being like a intro to Frank if someone is stubborn about their music.
  10. Bacon Fat:  I'm not huge on it
  11. Stolen Moments: This is an instrumental song. I don't really care for this song either. It does flow into the next song, but I don't find it that amazing. It is kind of cool
  12. Murdered By Numbers: I like the fact that Frank had Sting comeout and play this song. I much more like The Police's version off 1983's Synchronicity. It's not that I don't like this song, but I like the other version more. 
  13. Jezebel Boy: I also think that this song is ok. I'm not huge on this song either, but what ever.
  14. Outside Now: I don't like this version as much as the Joe's Garage Act: II & III version. I do think that this is still good, but I don't quite like it as much. I think I still need to listen to the version from 1988's Guitar. I also the 1991's You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore, Vol. 4 (rec. 1984) and 1984's Perfect Stranger versions of the song. But I don't think this is as good as the original album version.
  15. Hot-Plate Heaven at the Green Hotel: I think that the 1986's Does Humor Belong In Music?, recorded in '84, isn't that different from this 1988's Broadway The Hard Way.
  16. What Kind Of Girl?: I like this version. I have to laugh that they reference Jim. And I like that they quote Strawberry Fields Forever in this song. I like the flow into the next song, which is pretty much written to be about Jim. I like the version on Beat The Boots II: Tengo Na Minchia Tanta, which was recorded November 1970. I also like the version on Fillmore East, June 1971 too. I do think it's intresting on the Philly '76 album version because Lady Bianca is a woman and she is the prostitute in the song. But this is a song that is an example of how he kind redid songs "classics" for this '88 Tours.
  17. Jesus Thinks Your A Jerk: Though I am a Christian I still love and respect Frank's views. This song reminds me of sophomore year waiting to go and see my brother do swim meet. I particularly remember the one where I was listening to the Broadway the Hard Way version. For some reason I had a shit load of confidence and actually said something to the "hottest" girl I'd ever seen at school. She said two words. I know what but I don't want to say because it is embarrassing. But this song is so fricken catchy. The more I listened to it the more I understood the lyrics. It is an awesome song. overall I love this song and listen to it like crazy. The song reminds me of the album cover and the album cover reminds me of that evening, so to say. It sucks there is only 2 versions of the song, including a bootleg version, of the song. It is very catchy though, and will probably always be one of my favorite Zappa songs.
Overall I have to give this a 7.6/10. The reason I did this is because only two songs on this album that were on other albums. I am not a huge fan off the '88 Tour band that Frank had. For that reason I am not crazy about any of these live albums. I don't hate them, but they are defiantly not my favorite Zappa stuff. I kind of like that this album has a somewhat concept. By that each song has a joke in it and it is kind of continued in all the songs. Kind of like a loose concept album, in a way. First listen this would have gotten like a 4 or 5, but now it's got a 7. But also realize that I've listened to a shit ton of concert boots from the '88 Shows, so that might have also helped. I did a review of one, St. Patrick's Day 1988


  1. Get a different take on the 1988 tour albums at

    1. I like your review thing you did. I haven't really heard Make A Jazz Noise, but I heard some of Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life. It has been at least a year, or almost a year, since I've listened to BBYNHINY. I am gonna go and check these out, espically since I can tolerate the '88 Tour Stuff more than I could a year ago.

      Have you heard any of the tour bootlegs