This CD is an album that falls into a niche category of productions. Those familiar with the band's history will recognize the main title of this album, as it is the same as their debut album from 1972. The subtitle, “The Complete Works”, indicates that this isn't merely a reissue, of course. It is not a reissue with added bonus tracks or in other manners issued in an extended version either. Instead, this is a remake of their first album. New recordings of their old album, extended with additional tracks, and when I compare the track list of this 2014 edition with the original album, it appears that the album has been rearranged fairly extensively too. Some compositions are shorter, other are longer, some appear to be missing altogether, at least as far as track titles go. It is, in short, a new album, a brand new version of their debut album from 1972.
ORCHESTRAL FAVORITES contains five symphonic works written by Frank Zappa, performed by Zappa himself and his mid-'70s rhythm section with a full orchestra. Recorded at the Royce Hall in Los Angeles in 1975, ORCHESTRAL FAVORITES is similar to Zappa's other symphonic works (parts of BURNT WEENY SANDWICH, 200 MOTELS, etc.). The album was not released until four years later however, due to a skirmish with Warner Bros. Zappa wanted to release a three-record set entitled LATHER, which was to include material from ORCHESTRAL FAVORITES plus the other late-'70s releases SLEEP DIRT and STUDIO TAN. But Warner Bros. forced him to release the complete work as separate albums (LATHER did finally appear as a three- disc set in 1996).