The Torture Never Stops

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See also: The Torture Never Stops DVD

Lyrics

Zoot Allures version

Flies all green 'n buzzin' in his dungeon of despair
Prisoners grumble and piss their clothes and scratch their matted hair
A tiny light from a window hole a hundred yards away
Is all they ever get to know about the regular life in the day;


An' it stinks so bad the stones been chokin'
'N weepin' greenish drops
In the room where the giant fire puffer works
'N the torture never stops
The torture never stops


Slime 'n rot, rats 'n snot 'n vomit on the floor
Fifty ugly soldiers, man, holdin' spears by the iron door
Knives 'n spikes 'n guns 'n the likes of every tool of pain
An' a sinister midget with a bucket an' a mop where the blood goes down the drain;


An' it stinks so bad the stones been chokin'
'N weepin' greenish drops
In the room where the giant fire puffer works
'N the torture never stops
The torture never stops
The torture
The torture
The torture never stops.


Flies all green 'n buzzin' in his dungeon of despair
An evil prince eats a steamin' pig in a chamber right near there
He eats the snouts 'n the trotters first
The loin's 'n the groin's is soon dispersed
His carvin' style is well rehearsed
He stands and shouts:
"All men be cursed!
All men be cursed!
All men be cursed!
All men be cursed!"
And disagree, well no-one durst
He's the best of course of all the worst
Some wrong been done, he done it first


(Well, well) An' he stinks so bad, his bones been chokin'
(Yeah) 'N weepin' greenish drops,
(Well) In the night of the iron sausage,
(Well) Where the torture never stops
The torture never stops
The torture
The torture
The torture never stops.


Flies all green 'n buzzin' in his dungeon of despair
Who are all those people that he's locked away up there
Are they crazy?
Are they sainted?
Are they zeros someone painted?
It has never been explained since at first it was created
But a dungeon like a sin requires naught but lockin' in
Of everything that's ever been
Look at hers
Look at him


That's what's the deal we're dealing in
That's what's the deal we're dealing in
That's what's the deal we're dealing in
That's what's the deal we're dealing in


Thing-Fish version


THING-FISH:
Now, dis nasty sucker is de respondable party fo de en-whiffment o' de origumal potium. Through de magik o' stage-kraff, we be able to see him at woik! He now be preparin' some ugly shit to make yo' life even mo' mizzable den it awready are, since dis batch be resigned to render him immortal! We does not know if it gwine woik yet, but we kin always hope fo' de best!


Flies all green 'n buzznin' in his dunjing of despair
Prisoners grummle an' piss dey' clothes 'n scratch dey' matted hair
A tiny light fum a window-hole a hunnit yards away
Is all dey ever gets t'know 'bouts de reg'luh life in de day


An' it stink so bad, de stones been chokin'
'N weepin' greenish drops
In de room where de giant fowah-puffer woikin',
'N de torchum never stops
De torchum never stops
De torchum,
De torchum,
De torchum never stops


Go on, 'DEWLLA! Play dat lil' guitar one mo' 'gin! Uh-oh! I smells trubba! He be messin' wit pigmeat heahhh! Muthafucker be rejectin' some CO-LOG-NUH directly into de DUO-DEENUM of de unsuspecting victim! Now he gone see if he immune to it by eatin' a dab hisseff!


Flies all green an' buzznin' in his dunjing of despair
A EVIL PRINCE eats a steamin' pig in a chamber, right near dere
He eat de snouts an' de trotters foist!
De loins an' de groins is soon re-spoised
His carvin' style id well re-hoist
He stan' 'n shout:
"All main be coist!
All main be coist!
All main be coist!
All main be coist!"
An' dis-ergree? Well, no one durst
He de best, of cose, of all de woist
Some wrong been done, he done it foist


An' he stink so bad, his bones been chokin'
And weepin' greenish drops,
In de vat of GALOOT CO-LOG-NUH,
Where de Re-zease be berlin' up
Berlin' an' uh boilin' up
CO-LOG-NUH!
CO-LOG-NUH!
GALOOT CO-LOG-UH-NUH!


Oh! Do yoseff a favum 'n don't use it! Oooooooh! Look at these ugly suckers! Boy, when white folks come back fum bein' dead, they sho' gets scary-lookin'! But don't take their appearance too seriously, people, 'cause dey say dis de sort o' folks dat belongs on Broadway!


EVIL PRINCE:
Somewhere, over there, I can tell,
There's a voice of a potato-headed whatchamacallit
Who does not wish me well!
His clothes are quite stupid, and also his shoes!
He's got a big ol' duck-mouth who knows how he chews!


He thinks he knows something about the Great Plan!
How Ultimate Blandness must rule and command
He knows not a drop, not a crumb, not a whit,
Of the reason for doing this criminal shit
And then, if he did, would it matter a bit?
Not at all! Because it is writ,
Our Beige-Blandish God tends to certify it:


"Only the boring and bland shall survive!
Only the lamest of lameness will thrive!
Take it or leave it, you won't be alive,
If you are overtly creative!"


Fairies and faggots and queers are "creative"
All the best music on Broadway is "native"
Who will step forward and end all this trouble?
For beige-blandish citizens, clutching the rubble
Of vanishing dreams, of wimpish amusement,
Replaced by a rash of "creative" confusement!


Soon, my brave Zombies, you'll make your return!
Broadway will glow! Broadway will burn!
Along with the remnants of everythign new
My Holy Disease will do wonders for you!
Those lovely producers who paid for you then
Will do it again, and again, and again!
The spying potato with orrible diction
Will rot in the garbage when this show's eviction
Takes place shortly after my alternate skill
Of theatrical sabotage triumphs your will!
I've a special review, I've been saving for years
For a show just like this, with potatoes and queers


I'll say it's disgusting, atrocious, and dull
I'll say it makes boils inside of your skull
I'll say it's the worst-of-the-worst of the year,
No wind down the plain, and it's hard on your ear
I'll say it's the work of an infantile mind
I'll say that it's tasteless, and that you will find
A better excuse to spend money or time
At a Tupper-Ware Party, so do be a smarty!


Hold on to that dollar a little while longer
For spending it here, why, it couldn't be wronger!
What's happened to Broadway?
Where's it gone, all the glitter?
The Heart and the Soul?
The patter, the pitter?


And after this deadly review hits the paper,
In will come "Roper, Bender & Raper"
To legally execute all that remains
Of this tragic amusement for drug-addled brains


THING-FISH:
Flies all green an' buzznin' in his dunjing of despair
Who are all o' dem ZOMBIES dat he fuckin' wit down dere?
Are dey crazy?
Are dey sainted?
Are dey STAGE-KRAFF someone painted?
It have never been explained since at first it were created
But a musical like we's in,
Require a whole bunch o' everythin'
We talkin' everythin' dat ever been
Look at her!
Look at him!


Dat what de deal we dealing in
Dat what de deal we dealing in
Dat what de deal we dealing in
Dat what de deal we dealing in

Players On This Song

Zoot Allures version

  • FZ - guitar, bass, keyboards, vocal, director of recreational activities
  • Terry Bozzio - drums


Thing-Fish version

  • FZ guitar, bass, keyboards, director of recreational activities
  • Chad Wackerman drums


Records In Which This Song Has Appeared

Single

Zappa Albums

Tributes & Cover Albums

Notes About This Song

Sheer Torture but Zappa has it all taped, Daily Mirror, Feb.14, 1977. cited by Neil Slaven. Electric Don Quixote. p.192

"The sound effects to 'The Torture Never Stops' were an evening's work. We did most of it in the bedroom of my house. There were two chicks there – one was my wife – plus myself. I think they enjoyed it very much. We got four hours on tape and then cut it down to just under ten minutes. My friend opens up with a the first grunt and it carries on from there. Er, I don't think it's worth telling you precisely what went on ... you wouldn't be allowed to publish it"


From Zappa On Air, Nuggets, No. 7, April 1977

FZ: ... then it goes into a song called "The Torture Never Stops".

Which is about what?
FZ: Er, it's about torture not stopping.

The line "and it stinks so hard/the stones been chokin' and weeping greenish drops" is a reference to Béla Bartók's opera "Bluebeard's Castle" in which the walls also cry green tears.

CC Clues In This Song