Michael Kieran Harvey Collection: 48 fugues for Frank
Playing time: 60'58"
Booklet pages: 12
© 2011 Move Records
Reviewer: Gordon Rumson
Review of Michael Kieran Harvey Collection: 48 fugues for Frank published on 21 August 2011
Michael Kieran Harvey, piano
Michael Kieran Harvey: 48 fugues For Frank - A homage to Frank Zappa
1 Greggery Peccary, Pentagon Afternoon
2 The Girl in The Magnesium Dress
3 Jazz From Hell
4 Tink Runs Amok
5 Civilization Phaze III
6 G-Spot Tornado
7 St Etienne: guitar solo
8 Ruth is Sleeping
9 The Black Page
10 Baby Snakes
A musical homage to the life and work of Frank Zappa, composed and performed by Michael Kieran Harvey, and complemented by Lingua Franka - concrete poetry by Arjun von Caemmerer, 48 fugues for Frank premiered in 2010. A labor of love for Zappaphiles and anyone else with an interest in advanced music, innovative poetry and artistic vision. Each of the ten pieces uses four or five ideas inspired by, reacting to, or developing some of Zappa's signature techniques.
'Frank Zappa was a great man. Through his lyrics he skewered hypocrisy whether religious, social, artistic or corporate. During the 1980s he took on the American religious right and the government of Ronnie Ray-gun, testified to the US congress including Tipper and Al Gore on the issue of rock censorship and blasted the hypocrisy of Baptist preachers such as Swaggart, at the same time winning Grammy awards for albums with titles such as Jazz From Hell. He was a personal friend of democracy heroes like Vaclav Havel (who also had the courage to confront the other major censoring religion of Communism). At the time of his death in 1993 Zappa was working on an ambitious project called Civilization Phaze III which used Dada and concrete poetry techniques to evoke a world not so much post-apocalyptic as post-human toilet.
'A perennial thorn in the side of the establishment, he stood up for humanism and rationalism, and his music reflects both extreme rigour and freedom. No teenager would ever consider self harm after listening to Zappa's Suicide Chump just as any remotely religious leaning thinking person would hang their head in shame after listening to his rap, the first on vinyl, Dumb all Over.'