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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes Jazz violin listenable, 23 Feb. 2001
If you like Stephan Grappheli, then look elsewhere, this is jazz violin like you've never heard it before. Put that with the off-the-wall/off-the-beat rhythms of Zappa and you have a very interesting album. I first bought this on vinyl when it first came out (many years ago) and I still dip into it for a Zappa/Ponty fix. Especially listen to Music For Electric Violin And Low Budget Orchestra, a large scale piece that shows the best of both the performers. Well worth listening to.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still great after all these years, 21 Dec. 2009
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John Brooke "Dr John the Day Tripper" (Reading, Berks, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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I bought this on vinyl as a student in the early 1970s (having previously got into Zappa's music via the Hot Rats route) and played it continuously. At the time it seemed pretty avant-garde compared to a lot of the other music that was around at the time. However, I very quickly started to appreciate the nuances of Zappa's music, and the sheer technical skill and artistry that Jean-Luc Ponty brought to playing it. I pretty much wore out the vinyl record over the years (though I saved this, and all my other J-L Ponty and Zappa albums during the great purge that took place when CDs took over).

I bought a download copy of the album relatively recently, and found I still enjoyed it just as much as I used to, which is more than I can say for a lot of other stuff I used to listen to back then. Timeless and brilliant. (Like one of the other reviewers, I recommend the "Music For Electric Violin And Low Budget Orchestra". (An interesting comparison is the version of the same composition on Ensemble Modern's "Adventures of Gregary Peccary" album).
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Joy, 10 May 2004
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If you like the music of Mr Zappa then this is a worthwhile addition to your collection. Jean-Luc Ponty was one of the most talented musicians to play with Zappa and this collection of mostly Zappa tracks is an absolute joy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Crucial album for Ponty, Zappa & Jazz Fusion, 15 Oct. 2012
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Neil Mawer (Lincoln, England) - See all my reviews
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Written & arranged by Frank Zappa this is a crucial album for 3 reasons:-

1. It introduced Jean Luc Ponty as the greatest jazz violinist since Stepahane Grappelii

2. Side Two contains Zappa's first full length orchestral work "Music for Electric Violin & Budget Orchestra" an avenue thatwas to be pursued in later works with the LSO, Pierre Boulez & Ensemble Moderne

3. Side One is a crucial link in the development of Jazz-Rock fusion, coming some 18 months before the Mahavishnu Orchestra and providing several key pointers for that band.

So absolutely essential for Ponty & Zappa fans, and for anyone interested in the birth of Jazz Rock ( alongside Bitches Brew & Lifetime)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zappa gets best out of Ponty, 11 Jun. 2009
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Terence Hyde (Devon, England) - See all my reviews
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For the Zappa completeist, this is an essential acquisition: 5 of the 6 tracks were written by Zappa, all were arranged by Zappa, and on the only non-Zappa composition, the man himself contributes a guitar solo. Other musicians on the album include Zappa/Mothers stalwarts, eg Art D.Tripp III, George Duke and Ian Underwood. Fans of Zappa's work that has appeared in the classical music charts may be interested to hear that the 20 minute "Music for electric violin..." shows clear influence from Stravinsky's ballet score "Agon". As with many of FZ's collaborations, he gets the best out of musicians: generating a rock edge to Ponty's playing that surpasses much of Ponty's other work.
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