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Ghost Canyon

Title - 'Ship Arriving Too Late to Save a Drowning Witch'
Artist - Frank Zappa

Ship Arriving Too Late to Save a Drowning Witch is now out as a 2012 remastered reissue of Frank Zappa's 1982 album featuring 'Valley Girl' with Moon Unit Zappa, his (quite young) daughter (at the time) on vocals.

Again, as with You Are What You Is, I have loved this album since I first purchased it as a vinyl entity! Played it to death also, and allowed it to reaffirm my devotion to the Zappa musical cause at an early age. Another album that I think also played at my parents home (my bedroom) for a solid year or more, it still resonates with me today.

This was one of the very few single-vinyl albums that Zappa released during the later part of his career, but the six tracks cover a variety of ground, from the instrumental workouts on the title track to the operatic 'Teenage Prostitute,' one of the overlooked comedic gems of the Zappa catalogue.

Now, back to 'Valley Grl,' which (believe it or not) once the catchy little tune - composed with his daughters unique monologue on tape - was created and let loose on the public, scored Zappa an honest-to-God hit single (#32 on the singles chart, his highest-ever charting single in America)! Indeed, 'Valley Girl' also garnered Zappa his second Grammy nomination, for Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal!

Highlights for me include 'I Come From Nowhere,' which fuses some of Frank's most aggressive speed metal rhythm and solo guitar playing, together with an astoundingly tight rhythm section - not to mention a completely insane vocal delivery!

Also, 'Who Are the Brain Police?' with an opening section that features a sizzling Zappa guitar solo is as violent a piece of music as can be found anywhere in his catalogue! The album isn't a must, but is recommended to regular Zappa fans since it - with the exception of 'Drowning Witch' and 'Envelopes' - only features songs that cannot be heard on any other Zappa album. However, the versions of the two abovementioned tracks are here performed at their best.