Frank Zappa - guitar, vocals; Denny Walley - slide guitar, vocals; Ike Wiilis - guitar, vocals; Patrick O'Hearn - bass; Arthur Barrow - bass; Tommy Mars - keyboards; Peter Wolf - keyboards; Vinnie Colaiuta - drums; Ed Mann - percussion
Although poor quality audience recordings have circulated among fans for many years, presented here for the first time ever is a direct recording of Frank Zappa's early show on October 13, 1978 at The Capitol Theatre in Passaic, NJ. This night is notable not only for containing two of the most memorable performances of the 1978 World Tour, but this concert was also bass player Patrick O'hearn's debut gig with Zappa.
The concert contains a wide ranging selection of material both old and new and a good balance between Zappa's humorous social commentary songs and his more challenging instrumental compositions. It kicks off with a standout example of Zappa's seering guitar work on "Deathless Horsie," which would finally see release on his Shut Up & Play Your Guitar series several years later. In terms of outstanding solos, a highly improvised "City Of Tiny Lights" featuring Denny Walley in fantastic form on slide guitar, is certainly a highlight. The same can be said of is "Pound For A Brown On The Bus," which immediately follows. This serves as an extended showcase for Ed Mann on vibes, followed by electric piano and then synthesizer solos by Tommy Mars and Peter Wolf. Closing the set is a complete performance of the Apostrophe album classic "Yellow Snow Suite.
The two encores are also notable, beginning with a non-orchestral performance of "Strictly Genteel." This grand finale composition to "200 Motels" is followed by "Dinah Moe Hum." On this final encore Zappa adamantly insists on sing-a-long audience participation. When he notices a guy wearing a Rolling Stones t-shirt who is not joining in the fun, he specifically singles him out. So determined is Zappa to get this gentleman to sing along, that he vows to end the performance should he fail to participate! Following an unsuccessful second chance to engage said audience member, and true to his word, Zappa suddenly stops the performance and concludes the concert.