Zappa/Mothers - Freaks and Motherfu*#@%! (Recorded live in 1970, at the Fillmore East)

Happy Together 1:25
Wino Man with Dr. John Routine   7:44
Concentration Moon 1:18
Pallidan Routine 1:14
Call Any Vegetable 8:56
Little House I Used To Live In 4:26
Mudshark Variations 1:10
Holiday in Berlin 3:33
Sleeping in a Jar 7:23
Cruising For Burgers 2:52
Total Time: 40 min, 1 sec

This disc from the first Beat the Boots series was recorded seven months before the official Fillmore East, June 1971 album. The two make good companion pieces, although the sound quality on F&M isn't very good (then again, the Fillmore album sounds pretty poor for an official release). The rushed, bootleg look of the official album makes me wonder if it wasn't an attempt to beat the bootleggers to the market. Anyway, between the two CDs, we get a pretty good picture of the Mothers' live show at the time.

Actually, there's some question as to whether F&M was recorded at the Fillmore East or West. The original bootleg's liner notes say Fillmore East, but one web site that I found that lists the recording dates and locations for the Boots discs lists it as Fillmore West. Another web site I found listed it as Fillmore East, November 5th, 1970. In Concentration Moon either Flo or Eddie make a reference to Long Island, which would seem to indicate Fillmore East. But then on the next track, Pallidan Routine, they reference San Francisco. So who knows, maybe it's a combination of both.

There is some overlap between the two albums - both include Little House I Used to Live In, Mudshark and Happy Together. The amount of unique material on each is surprising though, given two concerts performed by the same band only months apart. But then, Zappa was never known for being predictable on stage. The major selling point for F&M has to be the version of Holiday In Berlin with lyrics. The lyrics follow right along with the song's melody, and are brilliant - "Look at all the Germans, la, la, la, la, la, la, Watch them follow orders, la, la, la, la, la, la, See them think they're doing something groovy in the streeeeet....Played for a night in Berlin. That afternoon we set up our shit and rehearsed...". It fits in perfectly with the 200 Motels concept - Frank should have redone the song with lyrics for that album. Instead, it never saw an official release, which is a shame.

Also notable is an embryonic version of Easy Meat that pops up towards the end of the Sleeping in a Jar jam.

Overall, if you like Flo and Eddie, this disc is worth picking up despite the lower sound quality. Plus all Zappa fans should hear the lyrical "Holiday". If you can still find this one in stores, it's worth picking up.

Album Cover

Image of the Freaks and Motherfu*#@%! album cover