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The Residents - Intermission CD (album) cover


The Residents



3.08 | 11 ratings

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3 stars When it was released in 1982 the incidental music heard between scenes during the extravagant (and financially catastrophic) stage presentation of the Mole Show must have seemed like a belated afterthought to an already abandoned project. But now that the EP has been added to the 2005 Mute Records re-issue of the "Mark of the Mole" album it can be appreciated in the proper thematic context.

The original, unfinished "Mole" trilogy (later expanded into a likewise never completed cycle of six LPs) was an ambitious but incoherent exercise in self-conscious, self-indulgent narrative weirdness, a theatrical concept requiring (not unlike PINK FLOYD's "The Wall") more effort and attention than it was ultimately worth.

But without the baggage of a complicated story to weigh them down, The Residents (still a group at the time; today I'm not so sure) were able in these various overtures and interludes to concentrate more on the music itself. The result is 25-minutes of toe-tapping, tongue-in-cheek weirdness (a Residents specialty), exhibiting more musical continuity than the entire "Mark of the Mole" album it later supplemented.

(And there's a bonus for Progheads: the appearance of a Mellotron, prominent in "The New Hymn" at the close of the brief five-song set. No one plays a Mellotron without at least a tacit acknowledgement of some sort of Progressive Rock legacy.)

In the final analysis "Intermission" works better as an epilogue than it ever did as an independent EP. You might even say it blows the "Mole" album off its own stage.

Neu!mann | 3/5 |


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