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The Residents - WB:RMX CD (album) cover

WB:RMX

The Residents

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

4.01 | 20 ratings

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TCat
5 stars The Residents.

Usually that would pretty much say everything.

But this album is something that worked, and I think that was totally unintentional. Way back before The Residents were just a glitter in the eye of their eyeball mother, they sent in a demo tape to Warner Brothers. It got rejected. You all know how bad their music can be right? Well this was worse. The WB exec sent the demo back in an envelope marked to "Residents" and that is where the band got their name. As a trivial side fact here, the executive included a note that said that at least he gave them an "A for Ariginality".

So, since the band was embarrassed (? I know, right?), they hid this demo tape from the public for years and years. Of course, as these cult-ish things tend to do, it started to circulate in bootlegged form. So The Residents gave a collective sigh and collectively said, let's take these awful demos and make a remix album out of them. Thus, you have this album. The problem is, there really aren't that many tracks on here that use those demos as source material. (Ha, ha, ha, aren't those Residents funny?) What you do get however, is a bunch of tracks that use different sources as original material and layer a bunch of sounds and bad singing on top of them (usually redneck accent style singing), do some rearranging, and, viola, an album.

The funniest thing about this is it turned out to be quite good. There is a lot of variety, which is something that is usually missing on any single individual Residents album. You get some danceable beats from time to time, but the music is really odd, so you won't be hearing any of this in your local Rave Hall or Roller Skating Rink any time soon.

Now, The Residents, when they make a joke, they go out of their way to completely milk it for all that it's worth. You end up getting an album with something that seems funny on paper, but at the end of the album, you are ready to poke out an eyeball (see what "eye" did there?). But this time, these stupid remixes are quite hilarious, all the way through the album. If you are familiar with remixes at all, you should understand this humor. With memorable songs like "Snot and Feces", "Ohm is Where the Heart is", and "Baby Skeletons and Dogs", you just know that you are in quality territory when it comes to remixing something so it sounds nothing at all like it's source material.

The album still manages to be Avant Prog as you get some interesting things going on here that are anything but typical. It's not very often that The Residents sound like they know what they are doing, but this is one of their albums that proves that they are not as dumb as they think they are. You get so used to hearing their weirdness, that when they do something that is good, you suspect it was on accident.

You might think that an album of almost 1 hour play time (including bonus tracks when applicable) would wear out it's welcome with this satirical look at remix albums. But it doesn't because there is enough variety here to keep things interesting. And, if you listen to this as simply an art rock album, you might not think that it was supposed to be satirizing remix albums. That might be a stretch, I suppose, but regardless, I still enjoy this album that doesn't wear out it's welcome as some of the other many Residents albums do. Not all of them, mind you, but they have so many albums, EPs, and so on, that you can still say "wear out its welcome as some of the other many Residents albums do" and still be right, and yet still come out of it with a better discography than some other bands could come up with. Anyway, search this one out. Chances are that, if nothing else, you will come out with at least a segment of this album that you will like. As for me, I'll add this one to the bands five star albums like "Eskimo" and "Duck Stab" and some others.

TCat | 5/5 |

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