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THE RESIDENTS

RIO/Avant-Prog • United States


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The Residents picture
The Residents biography
Founded in San Francisco, USA in 1969 - Still active as of 2018

The Residents formed in the late 60's travelling from Louisiana to San Francisco, experimenting with tape and any media they can get their hands on, and recording plenty of music to suit themselves. The Residents had to get out of Louisiana, they were a very odd group of people who couldn't stand that setting and had to get out. On the way The Residents seemed to have made a slight name for themselves as oddities, so a man named Philip "Snakefinger" Lithman decided to come down and check them out from England. On the way he picked up a man named N. Senada, who ended up highly contributing to The Residents' technological absurd recordings by presenting philosophies and theories to The Residents to keep their music highly original and odd. It then set off from there, with tons of concept albums, and quite the iconic presence in the mid '70's known as the four guys in the eyeball masks who have never released their names (they want their music to be recognized, not them). This anonymous group of men toyed with tape experimentation and the latest technology in creating bold and pioneering electronic music covering a whole lot of ground, destroying pop songs with their signature style, creating extremely catchy oddball songs, and later covering people like James Brown, Elvis Presley, and Hank Williams into entire albums, deconstructing their known songs with their signature style. The Residents are highly intelligent and insightful, creating many concept albums in which they devote entire concerts to acting out. These became more often in the early '80's until today, where their rare live appearances can't be missed. The Residents also over their careers are the first pioneers of music video, and mixed media combined with their groundbreaking music. What you're going to be hearing is dissonant, catchy, electronic, extremely odd yet intelligent, the famous Louisiana voice of the main Resident, wickedly conceptual deconstructed pop and adventurous experimentation. There is nothing like The Residents, there is a sound that cannot be copied here. The closest you can get is the absurdity of FRANK ZAPPA, a far more unconventional DEVO, and the writing style of CAPTAIN BEEFHEART, the first and third mentioned The Residents' are huge fans of. The Residents create their music in isolation and have said to not have listened to other people's music in years, just to retain their style. The...
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THE RESIDENTS discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

THE RESIDENTS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 120 ratings
Meet The Residents
1974
4.16 | 118 ratings
The Third Reich 'N' Roll
1976
3.75 | 60 ratings
Fingerprince
1977
3.97 | 122 ratings
Not Available
1978
4.30 | 133 ratings
Duck Stab / Buster & Glen
1978
3.89 | 103 ratings
Eskimo
1979
3.64 | 90 ratings
Commercial Album
1980
3.06 | 64 ratings
Mark Of The Mole
1981
3.28 | 43 ratings
The Tunes of Two Cities
1982
3.04 | 16 ratings
Title In Limbo (With Renaldo And The Loaf)
1983
2.65 | 25 ratings
George And James
1984
2.91 | 25 ratings
Whatever Happened to Vileness Fats?
1984
2.45 | 19 ratings
The Census Taker (Original Soundtrack)
1985
1.77 | 32 ratings
The Big Bubble
1985
4.29 | 36 ratings
Stars & Hank
1986
3.58 | 45 ratings
God In Three Persons
1988
2.72 | 19 ratings
God In Three Persons Soundtrack
1988
3.27 | 29 ratings
The King & Eye
1989
2.85 | 34 ratings
Freak Show
1990
2.60 | 28 ratings
Gingerbread Man
1994
2.97 | 17 ratings
Hunters
1995
2.53 | 23 ratings
Have A Bad Day
1996
3.71 | 36 ratings
Wormwood: Curious Stories From the Bible
1998
2.71 | 16 ratings
Roadworms: The Berlin Sessions
2000
3.50 | 12 ratings
Icky Flix: Original Soundtrack Recording
2001
4.20 | 34 ratings
Demons Dance Alone
2002
4.00 | 23 ratings
WB:RMX
2004
1.85 | 14 ratings
The King & Eye: RMX
2004
3.93 | 17 ratings
The 12 Days of Brumalia
2004
3.81 | 36 ratings
Animal Lover
2005
2.68 | 24 ratings
Tweedles!
2006
2.45 | 18 ratings
The River of Crime: Episodes 1-5
2006
3.97 | 20 ratings
The Voice of Midnight
2007
3.77 | 32 ratings
The Bunny Boy
2008
3.42 | 20 ratings
The Ughs
2009
3.34 | 15 ratings
Lonely Teenager
2011
3.78 | 9 ratings
The Rivers Of Hades
2011
4.00 | 24 ratings
Coochie Brake
2012
3.94 | 12 ratings
The Ghost Of Hope
2017
3.80 | 5 ratings
Intruders
2018
4.67 | 3 ratings
B. S.
2019
3.88 | 8 ratings
Metal, Meat & Bone (The Songs of Dyin' Dog)
2020

THE RESIDENTS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.75 | 4 ratings
Mole Show
1983
4.40 | 5 ratings
Live In The USA: The 13th Anniversary Tour
1986
2.90 | 12 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show, Live in Tokyo
1986
2.25 | 8 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show: Live in Holland
1987
3.21 | 10 ratings
The Snakey Wake
1988
4.65 | 11 ratings
The Mole Show: Live in Holland
1989
2.52 | 8 ratings
Cube E: Live In Holland
1990
4.17 | 6 ratings
Live at the Fillmore
1998
3.22 | 9 ratings
Wormwood Live 1999
1999
3.67 | 3 ratings
The Way We Were
2005
4.00 | 4 ratings
The Mole Show (Bag Set)
2009
3.75 | 4 ratings
13th Anniversary Show - Ritz NY - Jan 16, 1986
2010
4.33 | 3 ratings
Brava
2010
4.25 | 4 ratings
Talking Light Bimbo's
2011
4.25 | 4 ratings
Triple Dub-Ya: The Way We Were Melbourne
2012
3.60 | 5 ratings
Demonic! The Residents Live in Oslo!
2013
3.00 | 4 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show - Cleveland (Featuring Snakefinger)
2014
3.83 | 6 ratings
The Wonder of Weird
2014
3.20 | 5 ratings
Shadowland
2015
5.00 | 1 ratings
In Between Dreams Live
2019
4.00 | 1 ratings
God in 3 Persons (with John Sanborn)
2020
4.00 | 1 ratings
Bunny Boy Live in Frankfurt
2021

THE RESIDENTS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.50 | 2 ratings
Moleshow/Whatever Happened To Vileness Fats
1984
4.00 | 4 ratings
Video Voodoo Volume I
1987
4.52 | 14 ratings
Icky Flix
2001
3.96 | 9 ratings
Eskimo
2002
4.53 | 12 ratings
Demons Dance Alone
2003
2.79 | 10 ratings
The Commercial Album
2004
4.00 | 8 ratings
The Residents Play Wormwood: Curious Stories From The Bible
2005
3.33 | 3 ratings
Is Anybody Out There?
2009
3.67 | 3 ratings
Icky Flix Live
2009
4.50 | 2 ratings
The Residents' Talking Light presents Randy's Ghost Stories
2010

THE RESIDENTS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.41 | 8 ratings
Residue
1983
5.00 | 2 ratings
Assorted Secrets
1984
4.33 | 3 ratings
Heaven?
1986
3.75 | 4 ratings
Hell!
1986
3.17 | 10 ratings
Our Finest Flowers
1992
4.44 | 7 ratings
Our Tired, Our Poor, Our Huddled Masses
1997
3.32 | 9 ratings
Residue Deux
1998
4.00 | 3 ratings
Land of Mystery
1999
4.33 | 3 ratings
Refused
1999
2.38 | 5 ratings
Dot.com
2000
3.65 | 9 ratings
Petting Zoo
2002
4.00 | 5 ratings
Kettles of Fish on the Outskirts of Town
2003
3.33 | 3 ratings
CUBE E, The History of Amerian Music in 3-EZ Pieces
2006
2.27 | 3 ratings
Ten Little Piggies: Tunes From Future Projects
2009
4.00 | 2 ratings
Heaven / Hell!
2013
5.00 | 1 ratings
DOT.COM
2017
4.00 | 1 ratings
Eskimo Deconstructed
2019
5.00 | 1 ratings
Eyeful
2020
4.00 | 3 ratings
Leftovers Again?!
2021

THE RESIDENTS Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.42 | 14 ratings
Santa Dog 1972
1972
4.60 | 5 ratings
Meet The Residents Sampler
1974
3.60 | 5 ratings
Satisfaction
1976
4.03 | 15 ratings
The Beatles Play the Residents and the Residents Play the Beatles
1977
3.06 | 9 ratings
The Residents Radio Special / Eat Exuding Oinks
1977
3.67 | 17 ratings
Duck Stab
1978
3.50 | 4 ratings
Santa Dog '78
1978
2.48 | 12 ratings
Babyfingers
1979
3.06 | 15 ratings
Diskomo
1980
4.00 | 8 ratings
The Commercial Single
1980
4.00 | 2 ratings
Shut Up, Shut Up
1980
3.29 | 14 ratings
Intermission
1982
3.00 | 3 ratings
The White Single
1984
3.00 | 2 ratings
It's A Man's Man's Man's World
1984
3.00 | 5 ratings
Kaw-Liga (Dancemix)
1986
4.00 | 3 ratings
Earth Vs. The Flying Saucers
1986
4.00 | 3 ratings
This Is A Mans Mans Mans World
1986
3.50 | 6 ratings
Kaw-Liga
1986
3.29 | 7 ratings
Hit The Road Jack
1987
3.13 | 5 ratings
For Elsie
1987
1.58 | 7 ratings
Double Shot
1988
2.49 | 9 ratings
Holy Kiss of Flesh
1988
3.63 | 8 ratings
Santa Dog '88
1988
3.17 | 5 ratings
Buckaroo Blues
1989
3.00 | 3 ratings
Kaw-Liga (Housey Mix)
1989
3.08 | 7 ratings
Don't Be Cruel
1990
3.50 | 4 ratings
Liver Music
1990
4.00 | 5 ratings
Stranger Than Supper
1990
3.88 | 7 ratings
Daydream B-Liver
1991
2.71 | 7 ratings
Santa Dog '92
1992
2.13 | 4 ratings
The Blowoff
1992
4.00 | 3 ratings
Prelude to "The Teds"
1993
2.38 | 7 ratings
Poor Kaw Liga´s Pain
1994
3.00 | 5 ratings
Louisiana's Lick
1995
3.44 | 9 ratings
Pollex Christi
1997
3.00 | 4 ratings
I Hate Heaven
1998
1.41 | 8 ratings
In Between Screams: Intermission Music from The Residents Wormwood
1999
3.04 | 8 ratings
Diskomo 2000
2000
3.04 | 9 ratings
High Horses
2001
3.67 | 3 ratings
The Golden Goat
2003
3.04 | 7 ratings
I Murdered Mommy!
2004
4.25 | 4 ratings
Viva Las Vegas RMX
2004
4.25 | 4 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, vol.2
2006
4.00 | 3 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, Vol. 1
2006
4.33 | 3 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, vol. 3
2007
3.00 | 2 ratings
Night Of The Hunters
2007
4.00 | 5 ratings
Animal Lover Instrumental
2008
4.00 | 6 ratings
Smell My Picture
2008
3.86 | 5 ratings
Postcards from Patmos
2008
2.81 | 4 ratings
Arkansas
2009
3.00 | 2 ratings
1997: The Missing Year - The Fillmore Dress Rehearsal (Act One)
2009
3.00 | 3 ratings
1997: The Missing Year - Adobe Disfigured Night
2009
4.04 | 6 ratings
Tabasco: Tweedles Instrumental
2010
2.40 | 6 ratings
Dollar General
2010
3.09 | 8 ratings
Chuck's Ghost Music
2011
4.04 | 5 ratings
Dolor Generar- Una Noche Lost en Van Horn Texas
2011
4.00 | 2 ratings
CUBE E Dynasone 3EZ
2011
4.00 | 3 ratings
Ozark
2011
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Rivers Of Hades
2011
4.00 | 2 ratings
Night Train To Nowhere!
2012
3.67 | 3 ratings
Wolverines (Fix)
2013
3.00 | 2 ratings
Halloween
2013
4.00 | 3 ratings
There's Blood (On The Bunny)
2013
4.00 | 3 ratings
My Window
2013
3.00 | 3 ratings
Magic Finger
2013
3.33 | 3 ratings
The Bunny Boy
2013
3.00 | 3 ratings
The Weatherman
2013
3.50 | 6 ratings
Mush-Room: Music from the Need Company Performance
2013
3.00 | 3 ratings
My Brother Paul
2014
3.00 | 3 ratings
Manz Whirled
2014
4.00 | 3 ratings
Boneless Boy (Jelly Jack)
2014
4.00 | 2 ratings
Lizard Lady (Live)
2015
4.00 | 2 ratings
Rushing Like A Banshee
2016
4.50 | 2 ratings
Santa Dog 17
2017
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Intruder
2018
3.00 | 1 ratings
Dreaming of an Eyeball Beaming
2019
3.00 | 2 ratings
Music to Eat Bricks By
2019
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Healer and The Archer
2020
4.00 | 1 ratings
Picnic/Loser + God's Magic Finger (Live in Japan)
2021

THE RESIDENTS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Meet The Residents by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.00 | 120 ratings

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Meet The Residents
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by DangHeck

3 stars Glancing at previous reviews and I honestly forgot that anonymity was such a big deal for this band ("anonymous lineup" haha). And really, quite the novelty for when they came onto the scene. Also with timing, cool this was only 10 years after Meet The Beatles. I don't have to feel this to be true: so much happened culturally and specifically in music in that span of time. Of course Progressive Rock and Art musics, but also its foundation in Psych and Space Rock; the advent of Fusion and Heavy Metal. A lot goin' on. And then there's this... Avant-Rock a la America.

When the album started, I had to bring myself back to reality with who it was I was hearing haha. Bizarro doo-wop in "Boots"?! I'm sure people figured the Mothers of Invention were key to this sound. "Numb Erone" is as sour as it gets. And it gives way to this build of instrumentation and complexity (and weirdness) on "Guylum Bardot" with woodwinds... It's with this song that I hear the potential for a future Les Claypool?! Obviously, as he, they were referencing then something-something old-timey.

Rolling right along to the next elements with "Breath and Length". Really cool, strange instrumentation. The female vox are a nice, eerie touch. "Consuelo's Departure" continues in this theme with some electronic elements and... what sounds like paper being sliced? Probably not. Some wild experimentation here. Electronic scurrying and weird far-off sampling continues the affair on "Smelly Tongues", which I really quite like. Plenty going on, though it may first appear incredibly minimal. And that's the end of this medley of bizarre happenings.

Next is "Rest Aria", an appropriate name if there ever was one. Solo piano plays sourly in some distant corner of the room. It is met with some sharp chiming percussion and what sounds like accordion? It rises and falls: pretty static. The saxophone at the end is real nice, I must say. Then the final sub-2-minute track, "Skratz". Immediately more my thang. It has this weird, nodding sort of effect. The vocals are creepy and the brushing of the cymbals and the reeds and all else are a fine match.

"Spotted Pinto Bean" feels like a call-back to Musique Concrete. Very strange and random. Creepy, but... familiar? It's pretty good. Onto "Infant Tango", and now I'm understanding why people are talking about it. This has funk and then swing, but all around it has charm. Some of the most bizarro vocals on the album. It's dancey and experimental in the greatest of ways. "Seasoned Greetings" reminded me of something by Eno ("Some of Them Are Old"?). Onto the creep on the final track, "N-ER-GEE (Crisis Blues)"--thank you, The Residents; I had no idea how to pronounce that. Banging on pianos. Sharp strikes of guitar. Some fine vocals, this'n? Then we're back into the swing, with something that sounds very familiar: "Nobody But Me" originally by the Isley Brothers in 1962. I say who cares if they're an inspiration at all (surprising as it would be). Calls to mind The Mothers' use of "Louie Louie" some 7 years before.

It's looking like I may be in the minority that feels this landmark debut isn't necessarily "Excellent". Important for the time? No doubt about it. And I'm seeing people call to its uniqueness. But of course nothing was made in a vacuum. The fact that, for instance, this was made a year after Henry Cow's Legend, I'd rather take that. It's hard not to make comparisons, and I did that aplenty here. The thing that can be noted is that this level of avant-garde experimentation feels like call-backs to 20 years before, but also feels like it's 10+ years ahead of the curve. A punk-level of not-giving-a-f*ck about what you think about their oddity.

True Rate: 3.5/5.0

 Duck Stab / Buster & Glen by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1978
4.30 | 133 ratings

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Duck Stab / Buster & Glen
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Argentinfonico

4 stars After a couple of years interacting musically with madness, experimentation, sound effects and wars consequences, The Residents seem to have arrived at what is the greatest work of their discography. Pop has rarely been an accomplice of such a perfectly expressed degree of madness.

What surprised me most about this band when I found them was to read that the names of their members were anonymous, although due to the lyrics of the songs that makes sense. As the good symphonic rock enthusiast that I am I sometimes find it hard to get into such perverse and transgressive albums as this one because here not only the rules are broken in the lyrics but also in the sinister sounds that work as arrangements and in the way the instruments are played.

The album goes through every existing tone, while dark repetitions happens giving to the songs of the album a clever, machiavellian and sarcastic sense.

Is very important the sense of the lyrics. Something I find curious about this album (as I don't usually feel this way with other albums) is that much of the immersion into this insane field is the responsibility of the lyrics. In a short album of short songs the perversion tries to go down many different paths, focusing on the typical psychopathic vision of the nature-loving but man-hating human being. It is a very interesting album to listen to and ideal as a recommendation for those who want to be introduced to this kind of music.

 The Third Reich 'N' Roll by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.16 | 118 ratings

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The Third Reich 'N' Roll
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Dapper~Blueberries

4 stars This is one of the best spoofs of rock and roll I have heard yet. The Residents isn't really what I call a band, but more of a art collective that makes music(?). With that, their first album 'Meet The Residents' showcased their Avant- Garde and experimental sound they were fully capable of, however here, they pulled out no stops and made something that I legit don't know how to describe. I feel like whenever I listen to this album, I feel like I am sucked in a weird, bright green void of sounds and noises that I cannot begin to understand. That is why I love The Residents so much, they aren't like other bands where they take you on a beautiful or terrifying journey, they just take you on a trip that you cannot describe, and not in a drug kinda way. The 2 songs on this album are so weird and disturbing and filled with chaos. But somehow with this chaos, I am at ease. It's kinda relaxing in a way listening to these weird sounds of pure, unfiltered weirdness. Stay true to your weirdness Residents.
 Duck Stab / Buster & Glen by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1978
4.30 | 133 ratings

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Duck Stab / Buster & Glen
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Gorgut Muncher

5 stars HERE I COME GOD DAMN CONSTANTINOPLE!!!

Not an album for the faint hearted. So that you understand how inaccessible this band is in general, this is actually one of their most accessible records. The album features polyphony, twisted vocals, acid instrumentation and a very enjoyable silliness present in every track. Some songs are chill, jazzy and mellow, some others are bombastic, insane and over-the-top, and there's no other band capable of merging those two things as well as The Residents.

If you like bands like Primus (a band that would not exist if it wasn't because of The Residents) or Frank Zappa, go check this out. You're probably already used to weird, experimental music. If you're not used to avant-garde, good luck! You'll either love it or hate it!

 Duck Stab / Buster & Glen by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1978
4.30 | 133 ratings

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Duck Stab / Buster & Glen
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Ian McGregor

5 stars This is one of the weirdest albums you will ever hear in your life. The first track by itself should tell you that.

It's not a normal avant-garde album, it's even more structureless and random. Surprisingly, it's one of The Residents most accessible records, and a great place to start if you want to get into their discography. This album frequently makes use of samples, atonality and cacophony, combined with vocals that have passed through multiple voice effects. An incredibly unique record, it manages to keep you entertained through its thirty five minutes.

I recommend it mostly to avant-garde fans, and it's essential to any The Residents fan.

 Intermission by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1982
3.29 | 14 ratings

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Intermission
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin

4 stars Why would The Residents release albums of incidental music from their defunct and failed stage shows? Because it's The Residents and some people just have to have everything they produce. This is an EP of 5 songs that were previously unavailable on any of The Mole albums, but (as the label says) it is not Music from The Mole Part III, its all music that was produced only for use in The Residents' live Mole shows. Originally, it was not intended for release, but since The Residents couldn't capitalize on the goofy story, they just couldn't help themselves. And it is good for us that they couldn't. The 5 songs on this short EP are better than most of the tracks that were released for consumer consumption and regurgitation.

This album was made before Snakefinger's passing away and before the period of time when the band got caught up in the vortex called The 80's, which is probably when they released their most unfunny and uninspired music and resorted to your grandmother's cheap Wurlitzer organ to make music.

Lights Out - Snakefinger makes his presence quite known on this track with his unique guitar stylings laid out upon a base of percussion and hand clap loops along with some very eerie synth effects and music. Strangely enough, this sounds better than a lot of the music on any of "The Mole" albums and was only used as an introduction to their live show.

Shorty's Lament - A lot of percussion loops and a spooky synth play the melody of this track, and the melody gets more apparent when some guest singers sing choral style along with the synth. The percussion is a bit hollow sounding (due to effects) and maybe too repetitive, but the vocals make up for it all. Spoken word from The Resident's own lead vocalist and his drawl fill in more space on this one when the synth isn't there making some atmospheric freakout music.

The Moles Are Coming - This tense piece sounds like it could have come from a suspense thriller, but then so could 70% of The Resident's music. It is quite an intriguing, yet short track, and probably one of the best of any of their incidental pieces. This is the reason why you just have to have The Resident's music, because you never know when they hit upon a masterpiece even if it is by accident.

Would We Be Alive? - This one sounds the most like it was produced on an organ in your friendly neighborhood second hand store. But this was also before they wore that sound out, so you got to give them credit for trying it out here, but after that, they should have left the organ in the fire they set when they burned down that 2nd hand store.

The New Hymn - More really band music, but done in a good way. Bad rhythm track, obnoxious organ chords and a really twisted sounding choir that sucks on helium balloons for a hobby. Oh yeah, and Mister Cowboy lead singer from The Resident's sings too. But again, this was before they wore that sound out completely. But it's all in fun, and when it's all in fun, well, anything can get past the snobby critics.

This is a fun EP and if you have to have at least one album full of incidental, failed stage shows from The Residents, well you should first have your head examined, and then you should have this one. If not, well then, absolutely nothing will happen, but you will eventually pass away not ever having heard this before. Hmmm, kind of makes you stop and think, doesn't it? No? Well then go finish your cauliflower pizza! Oprah loves them!

 Residue Deux by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1998
3.32 | 9 ratings

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Residue Deux
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars There are about six THE RESIDENTS recordings that I would highly recommend, this is not one of them. There was a compilation album they released back in 1983 called "Residue", well this contains those twelve tracks plus another ten and they called this "Residue Deux". This was released in 1998 and these compilation albums contain outtakes of songs mostly from the early seventies to the early eighties. This is actually much better than you would think but I'd still suggest this one to hard core fans only. The first track that I really took to was "Diskomo" with those light vocals that come and go while beats and experimental sounds support. So catchy. "From The Plains Of Mexico" has these folky almost spoken words with an intense backdrop of sounds. The lyrics are dramatic. "Safety Is A Cootie Wootie" rounds out my top three and this one is also pretty intense sounding with vocals over top. So with 22 songs and all being outtakes you know we're going to get some duds but I'm actually surprised at how consistently good this is. I take back what I said earlier, if you're a fan of this band it's well worth checking this recording out, you might be surprised.
 For Elsie by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1987
3.13 | 5 ratings

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For Elsie
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin

3 stars This EP "For Elsie" was recorded somewhere between 1984-85, and was released as a single-sided 12" single in 1987. The music on it was used as intermission music for their 13th Anniversary Show. It is one of the band's kooky covers, this time of Beethoven's "Fur Elise". There is speculation that it could have been part of the band's failed project "American Composer series". (Yes, we all know Beethoven wasn't American, but why would that stop The Residents?)

The EP is comprised of the one track. The CD version of the album, released later, has 10 more glorious minutes of music that doesn't exist on the vinyl version, but the vinyl version has some cool etching art on the non-playable side, so there! The CD also shows the track divided up into nine parts with the 3rd part based off of "Jingle Bells" and Part 5 coming from another EP, specifically "Santa Dog '84". Everything else here is that typical, cheap sounding synthesizer music you have come to love and expect from this band from this era of their existence.

The music is definitely based on the main theme from Fur Elise and from there, over the course of almost 30 minutes, the famous melody is ripped apart, deconstructed and bastardized to its utmost to produce this timeless and spectacular wreck of an EP. But, it's all fun. It's not until Part 4 that you start to hear snippets of the secondary theme played by a synthetic percussive xylophonic instrument. There is a sort of symphonic feel to the keyboard effects that also throw in a dramatic element to it all, and then, of course, The Residents have to add in the Santa Dog theme, like we needed to be reminded that this it, after all, music played by eyeball impersonators. At least this theme tends to break up the abused theme, because, after all, the band was all about variety in their music, though someone forgot to send them the memo about that. You'll also thrill to the Gershwin stylization which is underlayed by industrial pipe pounding (think Depeche Mode sprinkled by spy movie music) in Part 7.

Would Beethoven approve of this? We may never know, but at least he was mostly deaf, so he would never have to hear it like we do. Seriously, though, it's not too bad considering it comes from a time when The Residents only released sub- par music, plus you get the added bonus of Christmas cheer a la The Residents. You'll probably have a hard time locating this though. Look it up on YouTube so you don't waste your hard earned cash on an overpriced rarity. I'll give it 3 stars though, only because there is a little part of me that relates to their sense of humor.

 Double Shot by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1988
1.58 | 7 ratings

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Double Shot
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin

1 stars Here is another EP/single in the long line of The Residents singles. The thing about this one, which was produced to support the awful album 'God in 3 Persons', is that it was part of a project that The Residents had in mind that would offer this experience in a variety of 'flavors' in order to give listeners a chance to experience this bad idea in many different ways. There was, of course, the proper album, which is basically a narration done by an annoying redneck accent backed up by background singing and uninteresting instrumentals. Its definitely not one of my most loved projects by The Residents, not even very funny. Just annoying.

However, this EP/single was just that. You could purchase it as a 3-inch mini CD or as a 7' vinyl single. Again, The Residents were shamefully trying to milk this project for all it was worth, but, you know they were doing it intentionally because, after all, it is The Residents and that is their way of satirizing the music industry.

The EP has 3 tracks. It starts with The Residents doing a cover of a song by The Swinging Medallions called 'Double Shot (Of My Baby's Love)'. This track is not on the album 'God in Three Persons', however, the main riff from the song is used extensively in that album. Of course, the song is indicative of the cheaper sound of The Residents output of the time, the bad synths and tacky Wurlitzer style percussion. At least is funny because of the lazy delivery and you don't have to listen to that annoying narrator until the last minute of the track. Next is 'Loss of a Love One' in an extended version. It only adds about a half a minute to the original, and it gives you a snapshot at the awfulness of the album. The last track is a 9 minute instrumental that comes from one of the other spin-offs from this project: the 'God in 3 Persons Soundtrack', which is pretty much the same as the regular album, but with the annoying cowboy narration removed. You still get the background singing and the bad synth soundtrack. At least, you only have to listen to samples of the album and not the entire thing, that is the only advantage of this EP. The songs are all joined together so it almost sounds like one continuous track of 18 minutes.

The 7' vinyl single is a bit different from the EP. It only has two tracks. The first track is the same as the first track on the EP. The B-side is called 'The Thing About Them' from the album, but in this instance, the cowboy narration is thankfully removed, so it's from the soundtrack. At the end of it, you will have no doubt that you've been ripped off of your money and your time which you will never get back, so approach with caution.

There was also a single released from this album, the track 'Holy Kiss of Flesh', which is not even worth looking for. There was another single planned, but this never happened as even The Residents know when enough is enough and realized that they weren't getting the response they hoped for.

Even for the humorous and sarcastic style of The Residents, this entire 'God in 3 Persons' project is just plain bad. At least, with this EP/single, you don't have to listen to a full album of it, so for the curious, it might be of interest to see if you want to wast your time with the full album.

 Don't Be Cruel by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1990
3.08 | 7 ratings

BUY
Don't Be Cruel
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin

3 stars This quaint little 5 track mini CD (or 3 track single) by The Residents was distributed quite widely throughout Europe and given away at The Residents "Cube-E" tour. It would have almost been worth it to see this show just to get this now hard-to-find single. This silly little disc contains 3 Elvis Presley covers done in a deconstructed, striped down and tacky way that only The Residents can pull off. It starts with "Don't Be Cruel", which is taken as is right from "The King & Eye" album. The music is minimal electronics, pretty much what you would expect from The Residents at that time, but even so, quite hilarious. This is followed up by two more Presley covers not found on that album: "Don't" and "Surrender", the last of which is worth finding this single for as the hick-sounding lead singer actually breaks out of his emotion-less singing and actually puts some feeling into the chorus. If you have the mini CD, there are two short instrumental tracks following this which are not covers, but kooky little tracks called "The Toy Factory", which saves it's Christmas spirit for the very end with a wink to "Jingle Bells", and "Ghost Music". These tracks can be found on various other compilations and fan albums which are now scattered throughout the great universe, you just need a rocket ship to find them in most cases. But isn't it cool just to say that "I am the proud owner of this single in it's original form", while regular people look at you with sympathy for your mental state in their eyes. Eyes! They're all staring at me mommy!
Thanks to Retrovertigo for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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