Although this album is most widely known for its provocative cover image, which depicts Monk as a fictitious FrenchResistance fighter in the Second World War, it contains a number of new Monk compositions, some of which appear in recorded form only on this album. This is the last Monk album featuring the Thelonious Monk Quartet, and the last featuring Charlie Rouse (who appears on only half the tracks, having missed a recording session to attend his father's funeral).
"Ugly Beauty" (titled "Pannonica" in earlier versions) is the only waltz among Thelonious Monk's recorded compositions.
"Raise Four" is a blues with an extraordinarily simple but dissonant melody.
"Boo Boo's Birthday" and "Green Chimneys" are named after Monk's daughter Barbara, Boo Boo being her nickname, and "Green Chimneys" being the name of the school she attended. "Boo Boo's Birthday" has an unorthodox structure, being 21 bars in length and having an unusual harmonic structure.