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Over-Nite Sensation

Over-Nite Sensation

by Frank ZappaFrank Zappa


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Love it or hate it, Over-Nite Sensation was a watershed album for Frank Zappa, the point where his post-'60s aesthetic was truly established; it became his second gold album, and most of these songs became staples of his live shows for years to come. Whereas the Flo and Eddie years were dominated by rambling, off-color comedy routines, Over-Nite Sensation tightened up the song structures and tucked sexual and social humor into melodic, technically accomplished heavy guitar rock with jazzy chord changes and funky rhythms; meanwhile, Zappa's growling new post-accident voice takes over the storytelling. While the music is some of Zappa's most accessible, the apparent callousness and/or stunning sexual explicitness of "Camarillo Brillo," "Dirty Love," and especially "Dinah-Moe Humm" leave him on shaky aesthetic ground. Zappa often protested that the charges of misogyny leveled at such material missed out on the implicit satire of male stupidity, and also confirmed intellectuals' self-conscious reticence about indulging in dumb fun; however, the glee in his voice as he spins his adolescent fantasies can undermine his point. Indeed, that enjoyment, also evident in the silly wordplay, suggests that Zappa is throwing his juvenile crassness in the face of critical expectation, asserting his right to follow his muse even if it leads him into blatant stupidity (ironic or otherwise). One can read this motif into the absurd shaggy-dog story of a dental floss rancher in "Montana," the album's indisputable highlight, which features amazing, uncredited vocal backing from Tina Turner and the Ikettes. As with much of Zappa's best '70s and '80s material, Over-Nite Sensation could be perceived as ideologically problematic (if you haven't got the constitution for FZ's humor), but musically, it's terrific.

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Product Details

Release Date: 08/28/2012
Label: Zappa Records
UPC: 0824302385029
catalogNumber: 3850
Rank: 33951


  1. Camarillo Brillo
  2. I'm the Slime
  3. Dirty Love
  4. Fifty-Fifty
  5. Zomby Woof
  6. Dinah Moe Humm
  7. Montana

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Frank Zappa   Primary Artist,Guitar,Conductor,Vocals
George Duke   Synthesizer,Keyboards
Bruce Fowler   Trombone
Jean-Luc Ponty   Violin,Baritone Violin
Sal Marquez   Trumpet,Vocals
Tom Fowler   Bass
Ralph Humphrey   Drums
Ricky Lancelotti   Vocals
Ian Underwood   Clarinet,Flute,Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Ruth Underwood   Percussion,Marimbas,Vibes
Kin Vassy   Vocals,Announcer

Technical Credits

Fred Borkgren   Engineer
Stephen W. Desper   Engineer
Steve Desper   Engineer
Terry Dunavan   Engineer
Frank Zappa   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Art Direction
Cal Schenkel   Illustrations
Barry Keene   Engineer
David McMacken   Cover Illustration
Michael Mesker   Digital Layout

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