Essential Listening: Captain Beefheart – Sun Zoom Spark 1970 to 1972 (4CD)

Sun Zoom Spark 1970 to 1972 (4CD)

This new four-disc collection revisits the albums Captain Beefheart (aka Don Van Vliet) recorded with the Magic Band in the early Seventies —Lick My Decals Off, Baby, The Spotlight Kidand Clear Spot. It includes all three albums, which have been remastered for the first time, as well as a disc of unreleased material.

The fourth and final disc in SUN ZOOM SPARK includes 14 unreleased tracks and is a trove of alternate versions, rehearsals and outtakes from the sessions for The Spotlight Kid and Clear Spot. The disc reveals just how much some songs evolved before being released. Among the highlights are a sung-version of “I Can’t Do This Unless I Can Do This/Seam Crooked Sam,” which became a spoken-word performance on Bat Chain Puller; a raucous, off-kilter version of “Dirty Blue Gene” that pointed the way to the final version on Doc at the Radar Station; and an instrumental rehearsal of “The Witch Doctor Life” that is nearly unrecognizable compared to the version heard on 1982’s Ice Cream For Crow.

Disc 1: Lick My Decals Off, Baby

Disc 2: The Spotlight Kid

Disc 3: Clear Spot

Disc 4: Out-takes