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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)

4.02 | 108 ratings
Meet The Residents
1974
4.17 | 104 ratings
The Third Reich 'N' Roll
1976
3.75 | 49 ratings
Fingerprince
1977
3.96 | 107 ratings
Not Available
1978
4.28 | 110 ratings
Duck Stab / Buster & Glen
1978
3.87 | 92 ratings
Eskimo
1979
3.61 | 84 ratings
Commercial Album
1980
3.02 | 58 ratings
Mark Of The Mole
1981
3.28 | 40 ratings
The Tunes of Two Cities
1982
3.04 | 15 ratings
Title In Limbo (With Renaldo And The Loaf)
1983
2.66 | 23 ratings
George And James
1984
2.92 | 24 ratings
Whatever Happened to Vileness Fats?
1984
2.44 | 17 ratings
The Census Taker (Original Soundtrack)
1985
1.77 | 29 ratings
The Big Bubble
1985
4.32 | 31 ratings
Stars & Hank
1986
3.60 | 42 ratings
God In Three Persons
1988
2.72 | 18 ratings
God In Three Persons Soundtrack
1988
3.29 | 27 ratings
The King & Eye
1989
2.83 | 32 ratings
Freak Show
1990
2.58 | 26 ratings
Gingerbread Man
1994
3.03 | 16 ratings
Hunters
1995
2.54 | 22 ratings
Have A Bad Day
1996
3.74 | 34 ratings
Wormwood: Curious Stories From the Bible
1998
2.74 | 15 ratings
Roadworms: The Berlin Sessions
2000
3.75 | 12 ratings
Icky Flix: Original Soundtrack Recording
2001
4.23 | 31 ratings
Demons Dance Alone
2002
4.01 | 20 ratings
WB:RMX
2004
1.84 | 13 ratings
The King & Eye: RMX
2004
4.00 | 17 ratings
The 12 Days of Brumalia
2004
3.80 | 34 ratings
Animal Lover
2005
2.63 | 22 ratings
Tweedles!
2006
2.44 | 17 ratings
The River of Crime: Episodes 1-5
2006
4.00 | 18 ratings
The Voice of Midnight
2007
3.78 | 31 ratings
The Bunny Boy
2008
3.37 | 18 ratings
The Ughs
2009
3.33 | 14 ratings
Lonely Teenager
2011
4.11 | 9 ratings
The Rivers Of Hades
2011
4.03 | 22 ratings
Coochie Brake
2012
3.97 | 10 ratings
The Ghost Of Hope
2017
3.00 | 2 ratings
Intruders
2018

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

4.00 | 4 ratings
Mole Show
1983
4.60 | 5 ratings
Live In The USA: The 13th Anniversary Tour
1986
2.86 | 12 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show, Live in Tokyo
1986
2.25 | 8 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show: Live in Holland
1987
3.22 | 9 ratings
The Snakey Wake
1988
4.68 | 10 ratings
The Mole Show: Live in Holland
1989
2.42 | 7 ratings
Cube E: Live In Holland
1990
4.40 | 5 ratings
Live at the Fillmore
1998
3.29 | 8 ratings
Wormwood Live 1999
1999
5.00 | 2 ratings
The Way We Were
2005
5.00 | 3 ratings
The Mole Show (Bag Set)
2009
3.67 | 3 ratings
13th Anniversary Show - Ritz NY - Jan 16, 1986
2010
5.00 | 2 ratings
Brava
2010
4.00 | 3 ratings
Talking Light Bimbo's
2011
4.00 | 3 ratings
Triple Dub-Ya: The Way We Were Melbourne
2012
3.67 | 3 ratings
Demonic! The Residents Live in Oslo!
2013
3.75 | 4 ratings
The 13th Anniversary Show - Cleveland (Featuring Snakefinger)
2014
4.17 | 6 ratings
The Wonder of Weird
2014
3.80 | 5 ratings
Shadowland
2015

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

5.00 | 1 ratings
Moleshow/Whatever Happened To Vileness Fats
1984
4.00 | 3 ratings
Video Voodoo Volume I
1987
4.59 | 13 ratings
Icky Flix
2001
4.00 | 8 ratings
Eskimo
2002
4.61 | 10 ratings
Demons Dance Alone
2003
2.76 | 9 ratings
The Commercial Album
2004
4.14 | 7 ratings
The Residents Play Wormwood: Curious Stories From The Bible
2005
3.18 | 2 ratings
Is Anybody Out There?
2009
4.00 | 2 ratings
Icky Flix Live
2009
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Residents' Talking Light presents Randy's Ghost Stories
2010

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

3.33 | 6 ratings
Residue
1983
5.00 | 1 ratings
Assorted Secrets
1984
4.00 | 2 ratings
Heaven?
1986
3.33 | 3 ratings
Hell!
1986
3.13 | 8 ratings
Our Finest Flowers
1992
4.46 | 6 ratings
Our Tired, Our Poor, Our Huddled Masses
1997
4.14 | 7 ratings
Residue Deux
1998
4.00 | 2 ratings
Land of Mystery
1999
4.00 | 2 ratings
Refused
1999
2.26 | 4 ratings
Dot.com
2000
3.69 | 8 ratings
Petting Zoo
2002
3.75 | 4 ratings
Kettles of Fish on the Outskirts of Town
2003
3.18 | 2 ratings
CUBE E, The History of Amerian Music in 3-EZ Pieces
2006
2.14 | 2 ratings
Ten Little Piggies: Tunes From Future Projects
2009
5.00 | 1 ratings
Heaven / Hell!
2013
0.00 | 0 ratings
DOT.COM
2017

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

3.30 | 11 ratings
Santa Dog 1972
1972
4.67 | 3 ratings
Meet The Residents Sampler
1974
3.33 | 3 ratings
Satisfaction
1976
4.03 | 12 ratings
The Beatles Play the Residents and the Residents Play the Beatles
1977
3.07 | 7 ratings
The Residents Radio Special / Eat Exuding Oinks
1977
3.66 | 15 ratings
Duck Stab
1978
3.50 | 2 ratings
Santa Dog '78
1978
2.38 | 10 ratings
Babyfingers
1979
3.02 | 12 ratings
Diskomo
1980
3.83 | 6 ratings
The Commercial Single
1980
0.00 | 0 ratings
Shut Up, Shut Up
1980
3.08 | 11 ratings
Intermission
1982
2.00 | 1 ratings
The White Single
1984
0.00 | 0 ratings
It's A Man's Man's Man's World
1984
3.09 | 3 ratings
Kaw-Liga (Dancemix)
1986
5.00 | 1 ratings
Earth Vs. The Flying Saucers
1986
5.00 | 1 ratings
This Is A Mans Mans Mans World
1986
3.50 | 4 ratings
Kaw-Liga
1986
3.40 | 5 ratings
Hit The Road Jack
1987
3.50 | 2 ratings
For Elsie
1987
1.38 | 5 ratings
Double Shot
1988
2.49 | 7 ratings
Holy Kiss Of Flesh
1988
3.67 | 6 ratings
Santa Dog '88
1988
3.09 | 3 ratings
Buckaroo Blues
1989
5.00 | 1 ratings
Kaw-Liga (Housey Mix)
1989
3.13 | 5 ratings
Don't Be Cruel
1990
4.00 | 2 ratings
Liver Music
1990
4.00 | 3 ratings
Stranger Than Supper
1990
3.88 | 5 ratings
Daydream B-Liver
1991
3.20 | 5 ratings
Santa Dog '92
1992
2.00 | 2 ratings
The Blowoff
1992
4.00 | 2 ratings
Prelude to "The Teds"
1993
2.43 | 5 ratings
Poor Kaw Liga´s Pain
1994
3.05 | 3 ratings
Louisiana's Lick
1995
3.31 | 7 ratings
Pollex Christi
1997
4.00 | 2 ratings
I Hate Heaven
1998
1.32 | 6 ratings
In Between Screams: Intermission Music From The Residents' Wormwood
1999
3.04 | 6 ratings
Diskomo 2000
2000
3.08 | 7 ratings
High Horses
2001
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Golden Goat
2003
3.00 | 5 ratings
I Murdered Mommy!
2004
4.50 | 2 ratings
Viva Las Vegas RMX
2004
4.00 | 3 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, vol.2
2006
3.50 | 2 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, Vol. 1
2006
4.00 | 2 ratings
Best Left Unspoken, vol. 3
2007
5.00 | 1 ratings
Night Of The Hunters
2007
3.75 | 4 ratings
Animal Lover Instrumental
2008
3.96 | 5 ratings
Smell My Picture
2008
3.85 | 4 ratings
Postcards from Patmos
2008
2.74 | 3 ratings
Arkansas
2009
2.00 | 1 ratings
1997: The Missing Year - The Fillmore Dress Rehearsal (Act One)
2009
3.00 | 2 ratings
1997: The Missing Year - Adobe Disfigured Night
2009
4.00 | 5 ratings
Tabasco: Tweedles Instrumental
2010
2.29 | 5 ratings
Dollar General
2010
3.04 | 7 ratings
Chuck's Ghost Music
2011
4.04 | 4 ratings
Dolor Generar- Una Noche Lost en Van Horn Texas
2011
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Rivers Of Hades
2011
5.00 | 1 ratings
CUBE E Dynasone 3EZ
2011
4.00 | 2 ratings
Ozark
2011
5.00 | 1 ratings
Night Train To Nowhere!
2012
4.00 | 2 ratings
Wolverines (Fix)
2013
4.00 | 1 ratings
Halloween
2013
3.50 | 2 ratings
There's Blood (On The Bunny)
2013
3.50 | 2 ratings
My Window
2013
3.50 | 2 ratings
Magic Finger
2013
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Bunny Boy
2013
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Weatherman
2013
3.60 | 5 ratings
Mush-Room: Music from the Need Company Performance
2013
3.50 | 2 ratings
My Brother Paul
2014
4.00 | 2 ratings
Manz Whirled
2014
3.50 | 2 ratings
Boneless Boy (Jelly Jack)
2014
5.00 | 2 ratings
Lizard Lady (Live)
2015
5.00 | 1 ratings
Rushing Like A Banshee
2016
5.00 | 1 ratings
Santa Dog 17
2017
5.00 | 1 ratings
The Intruder
2018

THE RESIDENTS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Double Shot by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1988
1.38 | 5 ratings

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Double Shot
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

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
3.13 | 5 ratings

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

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

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!
 Smell My Picture by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2008
3.96 | 5 ratings

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Smell My Picture
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars Through the years, The Residents have released some really strange and some really great albums, many of which were written with definite concepts, stories and ideas, usually based around original and cutting edge multi-media material. Those familiar with The Residents know that the band has had its ups and downs, and sometimes their downs were so down that they were up.

In the 2000s, the band started taking their odd sarcasm and humor more seriously, and they seen some rather unique albums come from their collective eyeballs. Between 2005 and 2007, a trilogy of albums proved the band wasn't just a bunch of oddballs that really didn't know how to play anything, but could actually create some innovative music, still keep their warped sense of humor, and continue to keep themselves strangely relevant to what was going on at the time. This trilogy of albums was made up of "River of Crime", "Tweedles" and "The Voice of Midnight". The bands sounded like they were trying hard to make impressive music, even if the concepts were still off in some strange places that no other band would dare follow.

The Residents also had a history of releasing everything, and that is why their collection of collections of rarities and "fan albums" is so immense. They were know to release completely useless music, even incidental music that was played during intermissions at their concerts. So, this brings us to this featured collection of outtakes and what-nots from the same period as the trilogy of albums mentioned above, a delightful collection of oddness know collectively as "Smell My Picture", an ugly title with an equally ugly album cover, the upside-down close-up of someone's nostril.

This historical collection contains most of the unused instrumental music that was recorded for these albums. According to the band's website, the title of the album was cleverly inspired by one of the eyeballs when it was said that making a movie with sound was much like smelling photographs instead of looking at them. The term ended up being used by the band when they wanted feedback on different ideas. Wow, The Residents actually had ideas, what a concept!

So, we have another unashamedly useless collection of unwanted musical ideas from The Residents that we don't know what to do with. Surprisingly, the tracks on this mostly instrumental album sound quite finished, especially for The Residents. Who needs those expensive avant-garde bands when you can get discount store style avant-garde music like this priced to clear out of our inventory. The music is weird, but definitely what you would expect from The Residents, except that it is well- created, orchestrated and performed. Listening to this album, you can understand why The Residents are considered avant- prog, if you haven't figured it out already. It's actually quite surprising how interesting and captivating this music is. It's not that cheap Wurlitzer music from their discography of the 80s, but it is all professionally done with actual instruments and electronics.

Is the album essential? Well I wouldn't go that far. But I still enjoy it because even if it comes from a short time span in their history, it is still quite versatile and strangely engaging. I can easily call it a 4 star collection even if it is made up of unwanted ideas. The Residents will capitalize on everything, but, in this case, it is a collection worthy of owning. Just remember, this is still The Residents, and you are going to get some really strange stuff here, but it's all done well, and as a collection, it comes across quite cohesively, not hackneyed like some of these collections can be. 4 stars.

The Residents invite you to smell along with them, and how can you resist? Go ahead! You know you're curious. Have a whiff.

 Diskomo by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1980
3.02 | 12 ratings

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Diskomo
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars The Residents recorded their critically acclaimed album "Eskimo" in 1979, and no one was probably more shocked than they were that everyone seemed to love it so much. In response, a year later, they decided to ruin it by condensing it down from album size to around 7 minutes and setting it all to a disco beat and calling it "Diskomo". Of course, the disco beat is intentionally cheap sounding and adding snips and loops of pieces of the vocals and melody from the entire "Eskimo" work they produced, just as a brush off to the critics. Strangely enough, the stupid track ends up being a bit cute and silly, and you can't help but want to listen to it.

This particular EP also came with the 4 track suite called "Goosebumps" which was recorded years before as a sarcastic look at children's music. These four tracks are actually the best part of this EP as the nursery rhyme tunes that are mish mashed on these four tracks are hilariously scary and dark. The Resident's humor runs amok on these tracks, and make the whole thing worth getting. It might scare your kids if you accidentally confuse it for one of their records some day, but it will make you, as a mature responsible adult, laugh.

In 1990, a re-release of this EP included 3 more strange tracks, "Whoopy Snorp", the Christmas non-classic "Saint Nix' and a live version of Diskomo which will be sure to make you glad you never seen one of their shows from that time. The unknown lead singer even goes for growling/yelling vocals, which was way ahead of their time. But that was an accident, to be ahead of their time. Ha Ha. Who would have thought in 1980 that The Residents would be so influential? The EP is fun, and is worth searching for, but you probably won't find it. So The Residents get the last laugh after all.

 Stars & Hank by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1986
4.32 | 31 ratings

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Stars & Hank
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars The Residents' short-lived "American Composer" series regrettably came to an early demise after only two albums, "George and James" (celebrating (?) the sounds of George Gershwin and James Brown), and this particular gem "Stars and Hank" (paying homage (?) to Hank Williams, Sr. and John Philip Sousa). Who else but The Residents could pair these four obviously non-related artists together? Unfortunately, for everyone, the album series wasn't as popular as hoped, so this quickly ended. Now, if you are a fan of any one of these four musicians, you may want to think twice about searching for these albums as The Residents are known to deconstruct any covers they do, and that is exactly what they do with "Stars and Hank". Yet, you are bound to get more than just a chuckle out of these destroyed covers.

"Stars and Hank" was released in 1986, 2 years after the "George and James" album. Even though the two albums belong to the same immoral series, "Stars and Hank" is the better of the two albums. The first side takes 5 tracks from the Williams songbook and, instead of staying with a singular style like they did on the first album in the series, they take his songs of Americana and send them through a variety of styles totally unlike their original forms, and in the process, deconstruct them and remake them into something quite different. "Hey, Good Lookin" gets all of the joy removed from it and emphasizes the repetitivness of it all. "Six More Miles", the one song that should have been dark, ends up being a fun and cheery song, "Kaw- Liga" gets turned into a danceable and, yes, even quite accessible, that should have fooled the public into thinking The Residents might actually have their best interests at heart. "Ramblin' Man" is also fun, while "Jambalaya" gets reduced to a depressing anthem. All five are examples of The Residents sense of humor and sarcasm, while also showing a bit of respect for the artist.

The second side is made up of a suite of 6 popular march themes by Sousa. Most of these will be familiar to you, but these tracks are more deconstructed than the ones on the first side. The familiar orchestral strains from the rousing original marches are replaced by kooky synthesizer effects. Beginning the suite (which collectively is called "Sousaside"), you get fairground crowd sounds, and "Nobles of the Mystic Shrine" gets successfully demoted from a regal march to memories of cotton candy and throwing up in a garbage can. "Stars and Stripes Forever" gets demolished by what sounds like a bad school marching band. The same treatments get done to the remainder of the songs, and all through it, you get background crowd noises, like off-cue clapping (as you would get from a crowd at a parade who have totally ignored the marching band to watch the scantily-dressed Miss Teen Cheesehead waving from a glittery float. The funny thing is, The Residents hit it spot on, depicting what these marches have been reduced to in popular culture.

I don't know if the first volume 1 had been done better like volume 2 that the series might have caught on better or not. If nothing else, it would have been interesting to see who else The Residents would have paired together, maybe David Bowie and Jimmie Osmond? (That actually happened, by the way, but it was done by some dunderheads in a corporate music office who wanted to promote two random artists and sent out a promo with the pairing). Anyway, this is something we'll never know, but it might make for a great forum topic "Which two unlikely artists would have been paired for The Residents'American Composer Series Vol. III"? Any takers?

 Meet The Residents by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.02 | 108 ratings

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Meet The Residents
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars When it comes to some of the weirdest music that has ever been made then it's a sure thing that THE RESIDENTS will be close to the top of the list. Having emerged in the rather normal American city of Shreveport, Louisiana, these misfits met in high school and were destined for far stranger places after spending years collecting as many different styles of tape music as possible. With the wild 60s underway the earliest members who preferred to remain anonymous throughout their careers found their way out to the west coast in the freak loving city of San Francisco but THE RESIDENTS didn't opt for a Victorian house dwelling in the Haight-Ashbury but rather settled in the rather normal and unlikely setting of the suburb San Mateo to the south of the city. The band founded its nascent Ralph Records and commenced to create some of the most unusual sounds ever laid town to tape.

Despite having released well over 70 albums up to when one of its co-founders Hardy Fox passed away in 2017, the band has remained utterly unclassifiable as its art expanded well past music and reached into multimedia, CD-ROM technologies and many films. The band has also been known as one of the most outrageously over-the-top live acts and single-handedly redefined the limits of surreality in the context of record album. Much of THE RESIDENTS' music can be divided into two categories which includes deconstructuralism of Western pop music and strange conceptual compositions that are structured around a theme or theory. No matter what the focus is upon, the group has always expounded the most surreal lyrics and bizarre disregard for traditional musical constructs and it all began with the band's debut album MEET THE RESIDENTS.

Fittingly this debut was released on April 1st, 1974 and displayed a Zappa-esque contempt of popular music of the day with the album's famous defaced version of "Meet The Beatles." While the album could certainly be called experimental by any definition of the word, the music remained somewhat traditional in its approach although various genres were segued into each other and created more of a stream of consciousness sort of album rather than a collection of individual tracks no matter how different they actually were but in the end the tracks themselves hadn't totally eschewed the orthodox of songwriting but rather stitched together a series of different sounds that morphed musique concrète into folk rock which could lead to Yma Sumac styled exotica, vocal jazz, zolo, post-punk or even piano lounge music. There is a clear show tune sort of feel to the whole thing although one where the entire band as well as the audience were tripping on heavy doses of illegal substances.

Needless to say THE RESIDENTS were well ahead of their time and this album failed to sell many copies with most people thinking the whole thing was a joke. The world would have to catch up to the bizarre world that THE RESIDENTS would construct but in the ensuing decades the band has certainly gained the respect that it deserves for its brash and unbridled creativity run amok. While this strange amalgamation or pop collage failed to sell little more than 40 albums during its initial release, the magazine Sounds gave a favorable review in 1977 and the band slowly but surely became a cult underground sensation and it's not hard to hear why while listening to this. Despite the bizarre mix weirdness including dog barks for percussive beats, female vocalists chanting with nonsensical words driven by jittery zigzagging rhythms and herky jerky angst, the melodies themselves are quite cute and cuddly and provide the instant connection needed to appreciate this errant world of freakery.

THE RESIDENTS were and have always been about being weird for weird's sake and that's what makes them so friggin endearing as they didn't give a flying friggie wig about any trends and went against every grain that they could possibly imagine. More DIY than even punk rock and far weirder than the most psychedelic Krautrock, THE RESIDENTS existed in its own world where they seemingly beamed in from another dimension as if they were some sort of ambassadors for another world that's parallel to ours but just out of reach. While MEET THE RESIDENTS was the band's first full-length album, they actually released a four track single called "Santa Dog" in 1972. On newer CD releases these four tracks are tacked on to the album and well worth the price of admission. While these tracks are slightly more primitive with more emphasis on pop deconstruction and hypnotic anti-melodies almost in a no wave fashion, the band took time off between releases to work on a huge film project called the Vileness Fats project.

It only takes one listen to any RESIDENTS album to realize that these guys had downloaded a completely different operating system than the rest of humanity. Even to this day no musical act has taken its idiosyncratic weirdness to the heights that THE RESIDENTS did. While the band would release too many albums to count over the decades, MEET THE RESIDENTS remains one of my absolute favorites for its untimely boldness that emerged in the musical freedom years of the early 70s but even by the era's standards, this one is about as far out as it gets in terms of unorthodoxies ruling the roost. Perhaps one of the most crazy rumors of the day was that THE RESIDENTS actually were The Beatles due to John Lennon displaying this album on his wall at home but i think it's fair to say that as awesome as The Beatles' were in crafting some of the finest pop music the world has ever experienced that THE RESIDENTS are so far out in left field that even the Fab Four didn't have a freak flag big enough to unfurl into this multi-dimensional weirdness. Hail THE RESIDENTS! Masters of the outlandish quirkiness!

 Stranger Than Supper by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1990
4.00 | 3 ratings

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Stranger Than Supper
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars The Residents compilation 'Stranger Than Supper' (1990) is a collection of rare and unreleased tracks which were recorded during live shows and during rehearsals. The compilation was released to the general public, so it was a bit more available than most of their other compilations and fan club releases. The tracks are pretty much unique to this odd collection.

It all starts off with 'Intro / Somethin' Devilish' (2:59), which is one of the bands earliest live performances, the 'Boarding House' performance at San Francisco, CA in October of 1971. It was to open the second side of the unreleased album 'Baby Sex'. Much of this performance is on the 'Daydream B-Liver' collection. The crowd is small and the recording is questionable. It starts with the hayseed sounding main Resident introduction of the show. The music is a noisy bunch of yelling, screaming and squealing sax. Even that early, before the 'Meet the Residents' album, it was obvious this band was crazy. Fast forward to January of 1990, almost 19 years later for the next track, their cover of '(Let Me Be Your)Teddy Bear' (3:46) as performed live on NBC's 'Night Music'. This track was intended for the 'Daydream B-Liver' compilation, but was replaced by their cover of 'Burnin' Love' instead. This track, like all of The Resident's destructive covers, sounds nothing like Elvis' or anybody else's version. The vocals are hard and growly with over-the-top emotion. The instrumentation is sparse, pretty much just bad synths and no emotion whatsoever. Quite hilarious.

'Why Didn't I Think of That?' (0:55) was originally supposed to be for a theme to a TV show that never aired. It is the 3rd part of 'The History of Digital Music' which the band performed under a different identity as they tried to demonstrate the evolution of digital music to a junior high school class. The first two parts of the performance is on the compilation 'Liver Music' and the 4th part has never been released, probably for the benefit of humanity. This short track is performed on a MIDI and sounds like a typical 80's new wave style instrumental, quite cheerful and Devo-like. 'New Orleans' (2:01) is taken from a studio jam done during the 'Cube-E' sessions in Maerch of 1990. It's a percussion heavy track with just enough synthesizer to remind you that this is The Residents. 'Lament' (3:22) is an excerpt from the in studio Snakey Wake performance in August of 1987. Snakey Wake was a fan-club released featuring one 20 minute track that was done in tribute of Snakefinger, The Resident's guitarist who died while they were on a European tour in Austria. This excerpt was not included on the Snakey Wake album. The track starts with seagull effects (or is it a monkey?) and other odd noises, somewhat reminiscent of 'Eskimo'. The sound is mysterious and dark and of course, mostly created by electronics. The vocal effects are sung (?).

'Die in Terror / Eva's Warning' (7:36) is an excerpt from the '13th Anniversary Show Live in the USA' album in February of 1987, which hadn't been released and was still in initial planning stages when this compilation was released. The song starts with minimal instrumentation and percussion with vocals and strange, spooky sounds. This evolves into a somewhat noisy song that is a combination of overloaded guitar and orchestrated synths. At 3 minutes, it devolves into bad singing and percussion, everything you expect from The Residents. And after that, it just gets weird. Good stuff. 'Suzanna' (1:52) is a rejected track from the 'Bucakaroo Blues album (Fall of 1989). It's a orchestral rendition of Oh Susanna!, as interpreted by a synth and then some cheap push button tones.

'Land of 1000 Dances / Double Shot' (11:39) was also recorded around the Buckaroo Blues sessions and was eventually included as a bonus track for that album. It is a funky little number done on your grandmother's Wurlitzer. There are vocals, for better or worse, some messed up riffs and maybe a few familiar sounding snippets of popular songs of the time. A simple riff is repeated ad nauseum. All of this oddness is simple another bad cover of two old rock n roll hits, one by Wilson Pickett and the other by The Swingin' Medallions. Since this is all satirical, The Residents milk it for all it's worth as many old songs were known to do, just not for 11 minutes. It's still quite hilarious though.

'Mr. Skull's New Year's Eve Song' (6:26) is a performance done in studio of another performance that the band done while live at a New Year's Eve show in New York for their Cube tour. I was supposed to be included on the 'Daydream B-Liver' compilation, but they blew it and put it on this one instead. It starts with a version of Auld Lang Syne as it would be played at a funeral, of course, on cheap electronics. The track takes a tense, dramatic turn as it continues, sticking to a minor mode as it makes improvisations and variations of the well-worn out traditional song, soon it sounds nothing like the song at all and more like a cheap soundtrack to a B-movie. The Residents never fail to not disappoint and that's what makes them so greatly terrible. 'This is a Man's World' (5:05) was one of their covers quite a while ago that was quite popular in Australia, but that country is full of odd creatures anyway. This is the single version that the Australians love so much, and not the album version that everyone threw into the trash with their other love/hate relationship items. This version did happen to make it to the 'Liver Music' compilation as well, but they had to have something that would have some kind of hope of selling this trashy material. The cover is as hilarious as you would expect with their fake over-the-top singing and deconstructed sound.

At the end of the day, you can't help but love this compilation, and it is a great introduction to the crazy world of The Residents. Of course, it helps to know that you are getting into music that doesn't normally take itself very seriously, and much of which is very satirical. If you didn't know that, you would probably never want to hear anything by The Residents again, but, since we all know that this is anti-commercial goofiness, then we all know that it's great, which it isn't, but that's the whole point. Anyway, it's a fun compilation and you if you don't like it, then you only wasted 47 minutes of your time that you will never get back. Not a bad deal, huh?

 Duck Stab / Buster & Glen by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1978
4.28 | 110 ratings

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

Review by Luqueasaur

5 stars Q: Are We Pop? A: No, We Are THE RESIDENTS! (... so... yes): 9/10

Holy Mother of God. Now that's bizarre, atonal and ominous music. Initially, THE RESIDENTS' compositions sociopathic coldness and detachment from "what humans commonly perceive as pleasant music" is quite a brutal shock, but after that initial blast and some acclimatization, its eerie atmosphere is captivating, poppy, and uncannily familiar.

Poppy? Familiar? How so?

Well, pay attention, see. THE RESIDENTS' first cover was of jocular but feral superimposed faces over each of the Beatles, which, as far as their music suggest on DUCK STAB, indicates the band as one likes to deconstruct popular music with a nice, bizarre subversive touch to it. And "popular music" is the common ground between us humans and the creation of these eyeball-headed deities: DUCK STAB sounds like a Lovecraftian corruption of garage rock, surf rock, psychedelic pop and other genres, but it still resembles garage rock, surf rock, psychedelic music and other genres. A slight detail that prevents alienation.

So, familiar.

Verdict: you probably wouldn't ever expect pop to sound like this. I know, me neither. But DUCK STAB is that much of an epiphanic record.

Here is my brainstorm for each track:

Constantinople resembles The Four Lads' Instabul not Constantinople (the rhythm of the vocals for the verses is practically identical).

The Booker Tease is essentially dissonant jazz noir, or free jazz I think.

Blue Rosebuds' palm muted backing guitars (pay attention to it on the falsetto midsection) reminds me of surf rock, and the overall atmosphere makes me think of the sea (honestly, that weird-sounding thing in the background feels like iron drums, which is the instrument commonly associated to sea due to its Caribbean nature).

Laughing Song is like an evil new wave.

Elvis and his Boss is, in my opinion, a clear take on rockabilly. The vocals' rhythm is pretty much identical to the stereotypical rockabilly music. And.... Saxophone solos.

Semolina is probably a Cthulhuan cover of Jump. The bombastic keyboards make me think of it as stadium rock (or AOR).

Weight Lifting Lulu begins as psychedelic pop/rock, in my opinion. Listen to that guitar.

The Electrocutioner feels like a dissonant 80s synthpop mixed with No Wave-ish guitar solos. The outro is classic Vaudevillian vocals.

 Tabasco: Tweedles Instrumental by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2010
4.00 | 5 ratings

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Tabasco: Tweedles Instrumental
The Residents RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

4 stars Even though this album was released as a companion album to "Tweedles", the Residents story/album about a sexually compulsive young man, this album is more than just instrumental versions of the songs from that album. However, there are contrasting views (all of these views are from The Residents by the way) as to whether the Tweedles story came first or if these instrumental songs inspired the music from Tweedles. The RSD website says that these 3 tracks were written to represent air, earth and water and that the original working title for the music was called "Tabasco", which morphed into "Casanova's Clown" and then finally becoming Tweedles. But then the other story goes that this music was originally in the form of fragmented recordings and that the fragments were formed into 3 larger chunks called "Air", "Earth" and "Water". Whichever story you want to believe, it doesn't really matter because, it is, afterall, The Residents.

So, yeah, there are 3 very long tracks here and it's all instrumental. And it's all tied to the "Tweedles" album, probably as the inspiration behind the music lurking therein. It was released in 2010, so at least the music isn't quite as amateurish as some of the material that came from the 80s and 90s. The album was only released as downloadable files; MP3 and FLAC.

"Air" has a lot of sound effects like air, wind, airplanes, and stuff. There are also some interesting musical bits that manage to squeeze into the 19 minute track. The sounds and music is constantly changing, just like you would expect from a bunch of glued-together fragments. Most of this is created by keyboards, synths and electronics, but at least the sound isn't as cheap as it once was. You see, they graduated off of your grandmother's Wurlitzer after she got upset at them for using it so often and not keeping up their end of the bargain by forgetting to feed her pet poodle. So, that's a good thing that the sound is more varied than some earlier albums, especially their instrumental "additional materials" albums which they put out several. The Residents had this notion that their fans wanted to listen to everything they produced as if the meaning of life could be discerned from all of their practice tapes or something. That's why Mr. Cooper next door is always hitting the walls separating our apartment, because its way over his head and goes above his beliefs of random generational symbiosis of reincarnation and regurgitation techniques not hitherto known to the current species of humanoidical travesticular clavicles. (My spellcheck just blue up). Anyway, it's interesting music, quite minimal most of the time, but not necessarily boring either. Yes, it is. No, it isn't. Well kind of. Okay, fine. Oh, there is some percussion in there too.

"Earth" is the next element represented in this music and runs for over 21 minutes. It can be difficult to keep up with this track because most humans can't run that long, but it's all about the chase, not the capture anyway, right? There is some droning and spooky effects at first, then tapping percussion and sparse keyboard melodies. This at times even reminds me a bit of a Tangerine Dream style. But who dreams of tangerines anymore? They also lied about it being an instrumental because there is some nonsensical chanting and other vocal shenanigans going on in there. Anyway, I kind of like this because you don't ever know what's coming around the next corner. Does music have corners? This music does. If you want to hear what corners sound like, then you should listen. However, since no one knows what a corner sounds like, there really is no way to know for sure, just take The Resident's word for it. I know they didn't say that, but whatever. Stop talking to myself! It's embarrassing. This is supposed to be a professional review. Right, when have you ever done a professional review ya dork. All this humor in the music makes me weird. Yep, there is humor in the music even if it is (mostly) instrumental. Does it make you laugh? Well, not out loud I guess. Mr. Cooper is knocking on the walls again. Can't he use the door for knocking like most people do? But I are knocking him. What? Stop talking so loud, he'll hear me. That sounds like backwards vocals there in the last 5 minutes of the track. Then there is strange calliope style music that gets rather dissonant by the end of it all.

"Water" is the last track, and also the shortest at 14 minutes. It starts with some wet sound effects so that it could be called water. The music is unconventional and definitely avant-gardish, a much more mature sound than what we have heard from them on some of their albums in the past. The sound stays minimal-ish but, still interesting and intriguing. Is that Alvin singing? Alvin who? You know, the chipmunk. Dang it, more vocals on this instrumental record. Again, more of these fragmented melodies and ideas, but they do a great job of making it somehow all flow together. Did you accidentally put on "Eskimo"? It sort of reminds one of that. Are me talking to me? Stop it, I'm confusing me. This is hard to talk to myself in first person. Now I know why Trump speaks about himself in the 3rd person because it can get confusing. That's easy for me to say. This track gets really spooky and dark by the middle part. Then it later gets happier sounding as some percussion comes along and picks it up a bit. Then it goes into an intense section and some really neat effects after the 11 minute mark. Mark? I thought he didn't come around much anymore. Not that Mark, he was banned from here after he called the police the last time. That's not funny. That's okay, nobody is reading this anymore anyway. Then why am I still typing this out? Because I feel like I haven't concluded anything yet. I don't have to, I said no one was reading it now anyway. Do I think that if I just quit writing now that anyone would even notice? What would you do that for? Is that a hanging participle or am I just happy to see me?

 The Third Reich 'N' Roll by RESIDENTS, THE album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.17 | 104 ratings

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

Review by TCat
Special Collaborator Eclectic / Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

5 stars Hello, and yes that is Dick Clark in a Nazi uniform on the cover. Welcome to The Resident's 2nd (or is it the 3rd?) full length album 'The Third Reich and Roll'. This album is the original mash-up album, way ahead of it's time. The Residents decided to show how unoriginal rock music was by deconstructing a bunch of old rock and roll classics, mostly from the 60's just to show 2 things: the first was that rock and roll music was pretty much all the same when stripped down to almost nothing and second, that rock and roll was brainwashing the youth of the time. Isn't that wonderful?

So, this album is made up of 2 suites, but the individual songs are not listed. The first half of the album is called 'Swastikas on Parade' and was recorded in 1974. This hilarious suite is made up of 15 songs which are covers cemented together by various other noises, instruments, special effects, war sound effects and so on. Some songs are easily recognizable and some are not and some are played simultaneously. And it all is completely hilarious. The covers on this half of the album are 'Let's Twist Again', 'Land of a Thousand Dances', 'Hanky Panky', 'A Horse with No Name', 'Double Shot (of My Baby's Love)', 'The Letter', 'Psychotic Reaction', 'Little Girl', 'Papa's Got a Brand New Bag', 'Talk Talk', I Want Candy', 'To Sir, With Love', 'Telstar', 'Wipe Out', and 'Heroes and Villains'. To make it even harder, some are sung in German. Now, take all of these songs and put them together in a funny mock up of a noise pastiche and you've got the idea. These songs are all completely ruined, but in such a genius way. Just to make it more hilarious, it is mixed very badly so that some instruments are louder than others and all made to sound amateur.

Side two of this album is made up of the suite called 'Hitler was a Vegetarian' recorded in 1975. This is simply more of the same kind of chaos as on side one, except with different covers and lasting a minute longer. This time the covers are 'Judy in Disguise (with Glasses)', '96 Tears', 'It's My Party', 'Light My Fire', 'Ballad of the Green Berets', 'Yummy Yummy Yummy', 'Rock Around the Clock', 'Pushin Too Hard', 'Good Lovin', 'Gloria', 'In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida', 'Sunshine of Your Love', 'Hey Jude', and 'Sympathy for the Devil'.

Sometimes, The Residents could carry a joke too far that it usually wears out its welcome before it's over, but other times, such as this one, it just never gets old. The main difference with this one is that the music never remains on one song for too long before moving on to the next section of silliness (except for maybe Yummy Yummy Yummy, but what else did you expect?), and, there is a lot of variation in the craziness that goes on around each cover that they deconstruct. It can be hard to follow along, and don't try to sing with your favorites because you won't be able to. Hopefully, naming the deconstructed tunes will help you follow along a little better. So now you can sit back, listen and laugh while everyone looks at you strangely. This is frankly, the funniest, satirical avant-garde album out there, so it gets 5 stars.

Thanks to Retrovertigo for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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