Sun Zoom Spark - coverWarners have been digging in their archives and are about to release a FOUR disc collection on the Rhino label – ‘Sun Zoom Spark: 1970 to 1972‘.

Due for release on 11 November 2014 this set will include remastered versions of ‘Lick My Decals Off, Baby‘, ‘The Spotlight Kid‘ and ‘Clear Spot‘ (but with no bonus tracks). The fourth disc is a collection of fourteen outtakes which have not been previously released legitimately.

These are the outtakes:

01 Alice in Blunderland (Alternate Version)
02 Harry Irene
03 I Can’t Do This Unless I Can Do This/Seam Crooked Sam
04 Pompadour Swamp/Suction Prints
05 The Witch Doctor Life (Instrumental Take)
06 Two Rips in a Haystack/Kiss Me My Love
07 Best Batch Yet (Version 1)
08 Your Love Brought Me To Life – Instrumental
09 Dirty Blue Gene (Alternate Version 1)
10 Nowadays a Woman’s Gotta Hit a Man (Early Mix)
11 Kiss Where I Kain’t
12 Circumstances (Alternate Version 2)
13 Little Scratch
14 Dirty Blue Gene (Alternate Version 3)

As many fans will already know there are many more outtakes from this time that could have been included so to see only a few is a bit of an anticlimax.

However, it’s good to see ‘Decals‘ finally getting a release after only being available on CD in limited editions and being pretty much unavailable for years. Hopefully the remastering will be done sympathetically to make it shine alongside ‘The Spotlight Kid‘ and ‘Clear Spot‘.

What’s more it’s great that this release has been put together with Jan van Vliet’s involvement, with previously unseen artwork being made available.

Sun Zoom Spark‘ will be released as a 4 CD set (at a reasonable price) and a 4 disc vinyl set (at twice the price!)

A full review will appear on the Radar Station as soon as we get our hands on a copy.



  1. Jerry says:

    Do you know if this is a new re-mastering, or perhaps the remastering that was done for the 180 gram vinyl re-issues of all three albums done a few years ago? The Spotlight Kid was pretty messed up in the 180gram vinyl re-issue, but the other two were good.

  2. beep says:

    Gotta ac-cent-tchu-ate the positive, may this be the first of the archival releases to come.

  3. Paul says:

    Lick My Decals back on cd with an official release of some Brown Star selections. not exactly a kick in the teeth + well worth the purchase. Who knows, maybe they cleaned up the tapes and brought out some gems buried in all that hiss.

    Since it is Warner Bros, I wonder why they let the Zappa family remaster and sell Trout. You’d figure they would want to save that for a collection like this.

    Questions, questions…

    • beep says:

      Turns out Warner’s NEVER had the digital (compact and d/l’s) for Trout. Seems they still retain vinyl rights (tho’ GZ said she was gonna issue one it has not come to pass…and Warner’s did a recent pressing). Yep, there’s no way they would have given up Trout if not for Gail legally making her case.

      • Paul says:

        Warner never had the cd rights for Trout? You have a source for this?

        I know that they turned in their, apparently, deteriorated master tape.

    • Paul says:

      I suspect that somewhere buried in the original contractual verbiage there was a way for the ZFT to release TMR and Bat Chain Puller on CD. Maybe the contract related only to vinyl and tape – thereby not including CD or digital releases – which certainly were not anticipated at the time. Gail’s sharp attorneys may have concluded that since Frank had the masters, he was able to release them on CD. I just hope that Jan got some royalty payments from the ZFT. Otherwise, Gail is a —–.

  4. Paul says:

    Any idea on when this will be released? I’ve looked on the Rhino site for any preorder info and can’t find anything about this. Thanks.

  5. dpmcnulty says:

    Damn ! I am excited !

  6. Zoghurt says:

    really annoyed by the selection since ive recently re-bought spolight and clear spot on vinyl.
    if there are any differences (good ones that is) then i will be happy enough but seems a bit daft having those to widely available albums lumped with the other two.

    • Paul says:

      Did Rhino not know that Decals had a lyric sheet insert? Really odd that they would have included the lyric sheet for Spotlight Kid, but not Decals. The same is true for the both the CD and the vinyl box. Also, the reproduction Clear Spot plastic sleeve was an unexpected treat – but it is not embossed in the vinyl set like the original. The Clear Spot logo is just a sticker on the plastic. The Clear Spot CD is also in a clear plastic sleeve, but the title logo is printed in the white card insert. Otherwise, this is a very nice set.

  7. fan says:

    I hope the new masters for the vinyl release are analog !

  8. Paul says:

    John French sez Rhino’s not paying a cent in royalties to the band members. I would expect that from Ozit but not from major players like Rhino. Maybe I’m just naïve. I won’t be contributing to these shady tactics, I have cancelled my Amazon order.

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