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The Residents - Buckaroo Blues CD (album) cover

BUCKAROO BLUES

The Residents

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.09 | 3 ratings

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TCat
3 stars Here come The Residents again with their umpteen-millionth release. "Buckaroo Blues" was a Fan Club album released in 1989 and given out only to those enrolled in their fan club. It is a collection of 3 long tracks that total 42 minutes all together. But, hey, that's not quite as bad as it sounds.

"Buckaroo Blues" is actually a suite of short tracks, totaling 19 minutes together. The song was used in the Cube-E tour. It is made up of various cowboy poetry/songs that The Residents found while going through a random person's attic (well probably not, but you never know). The track is broken down as such: a) The Buckaroo Blues Theme, b) Stampede, c) Trail Dance, d) Bury Me Not, e) Cowboy Waltz, f) Saddle Sores, g) Theme from Buckaroo Blues (Reprise). It starts off with the instrumental theme, that would normally be quite cinematic and symphonic, but The Residents kept things cheap, so it is all done with the cheapest and most antique electronic keyboards possible. Even the electronically produced wolf howls sound stupid but silly as you would expect. The following tracks continue with that bad electronic sound with vocals done in the bad cowboy accent vocals that most everyone loves to hate. The stories tell of cowboy tales that may either be authentic, but most likely are not. They sound pretty consistent with the off-the-wall satirical humor that was prevalent in The Residents music at the time. Actually, the songs don't sound too bad all of the time, and the better ones are the ones without the obnoxious singing, and those are kind of funny.

The other two tracks were supposed to be used in the "God in Three Persons" tour which got cancelled because of lack of interest. Track 2 actually consists of 2 songs that were released together as a single. The first part is a cover of the old song "Land of 1,000 Dances" originally recorded by Chris Kenner, then Wilson Pickett, then Cannibal & the Headhunters, and finally by Ted Nugent. Seriously. Suddenly his love of Trump makes sense. He's just stupid. Anyway, political wanderings aside, The Residents' version of this utilizes the drum machine on your grandmother's Wurlitzer set to the disco setting, some electronics and annoyingly abrasive guitar riffs. Bad singing ensues as you would expect, but it's funny because it is almost totally lacking any inflection or emotion. The second part of the track is "Double Shot" which was the b-side to the single. It's not much different from the a-side, but then disco was just like that now, wasn't it? The best part of this one is at the last when things seem to become quite unhinged.

The last track is 10 minutes of incidental overture music from the "God in 3 Persons" tour. It has been "enhanced" to some extent, but you will recognize instrumental snippets from some of your beloved (ha ha yeah right) favorites from that defunct show. At least you don't have to listen to the narrator from the "God in 3 Persons" album on this since it is instrumental. The Residents do prove here that they did create some cool music to fit their strange stories that would have sounded great if they could afford an orchestra. Unfortunately, you only get to hear the electronically produced version using that same cheap equipment.

This release isn't really so bad in that there is more of a variety from different bits that The Residents performed, so at least the joke doesn't get as worn out this time around. Seriously, the music isn't that bad, but you definitely need a weird sense of humor to appreciate how good it is at being so bad. I do tend to like the instrumental music from this era of The Residents career, its when that stupid narrator comes on with the annoying accent and then he goes on and on and on and on, or when a joke gets worn out before the end of an album, that is where it gets to the point that I just find it annoying. Not so much with this album, I can actually manage to give it 4 stars mainly because there is more variation in the overall album.

TCat | 3/5 |

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