The Sentinel

micro-blog from music lovers sharing their passion

Category Archives: The Residents

Snakefinger – Jungle Princess

Wonderful stuff from the “fifth Resident” ak.a Phillip Lithman a.k.a Snakefinger. This track is from his 1980 album ‘Greener Postures’, which was co-written and produced by The Residents, which one can certainly hear. Spectral guitar, and kettle drums bounce around his distinctly (post-punk?) vocals, before what can only be described as a typical Snakefinger guitar burst punctuates proceedings. Wonderful, wonderful stuff.

Advertisements

The Residents – Infant Tango

The Residents debut album ‘Meet the Residents’ has had different versions floating about since it’s elease in 1974. The first is of the original 1974 vinyl pressing, which is unedited and in mono, and the second of the 1977 pressing which is in stereo but runs shorter by roughly seven minutes. Subsequent re-releases of the album have alternated between these two versions. This is the full version of a track that bounces from day-glo cartoon Funk (yes, that’s right) to ragtime with horn sections a-plenty. Not what one would have expected from The Residents, but the same could be said for the rest of the album, which is a joyous ramshackle. What they lacked in musicianship, they made up for in ideas and experimentation; the same could be said for their production skills. Rough, raw, and beautifully amateurish, ‘Meet The Residents’ is possibly the greatest debut album of all time.

The Residents – Earth vs The Flying Saucers

Around the mid 80’s The Residents had an idea of restoring sci-fi B movies by colouring them and doing a brand new soundtrack. They even checked out an old Porno cinema in Frisco with a notion of buying it in order to screen these restorations. Like many of their early ideas (Vileness Fats is the example that leaps immediately to mind), ambition exceeded ability; or at least ‘do-ability’. The idea was scrapped (they probably would have lost interest in it anyway), and all we have to show for it is a montage of the 1956 movie ‘Earth vs the Flying Saucers’ that has had colour added and, of course, music made by the fab four themselves accompanying the montage. This ended up being released with the first edition of the Cryptic Guide To The Residents.

The Residents – Birthday boy

Happy 5th birthday to us, happy 5th birthday to us.

The Residents – Weight Lifting Lulu

Someone once described Captain Beefheart’s music as ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll from Pluto’. Lovely description, but far more apt for the work of The Residents around the time of their ‘Duck Stab/Buster & Glen’ period (which was 1978); especially on tracks like ‘Elvis & His Boss’, and this one, ‘Weight Lifting Lulu’. Eerie, otherworldy Rockabilly that sounds like it is being played through an ancient transistor tuned into another dimension. ‘Retro’, as imagined by David Lynch.

The Residents – Eat Exuding Oinks! Ralph Records’ 1977 Radio Special

Here is the 2001 reissue of the 1977 Radio Special that Ralph Records engaged in to celebrate their 5th anniversary. The team took the show to RAO Studios in Houston, Texas, where it was aired by the Radio stations host Sid Powell. Powell clearly doesn’t dig the sound from Louisiana’s phenomenal Pop combo, but Ralph/Cryptic Corporation man Jay Clem fields these hostile questions from Powell excellently. Matters discussed among the tunes played are; the theory of phonetic organisation and the originator of the idea, the mysterious N. Senada; the connection between the Beatles and the Residents, and the rumour that they are both one and the same (a hot topic in 1977); and the band’s work-in-progress ‘Eskimo’. The tracklisting for the songs played is below.

  1. Introduction
  2. Death in Barstow
  3. Interview
  4. Beyond the Valley of a Day in the Life
  5. Flying
  6. Satisfaction
  7. Interview
  8. Loser \cong  Weed
  9. Interview
  10. Melon Collie Lassie
  11. Interview
  12. Santa Dog
  13. Interview
  14. King Kong
  15. Interview
  16. Kamakazi Lady
  17. Whoopy Snorp
  18. Interview
  19. Walter Westinghouse
  20. Credits

The Residents – Santa Dog ’78

Festive doings from The Residents with a reworking of the song ‘Fire’ from their 1972 EP ‘Santa Dog’. This reworking is, of course, from 1978; and you can tell that the track is from the ‘Duck Stab/Buster & Glen’ era.

The Residents – The Electrocutioner

The closing track from what would have been the ‘Buster & Glen’ 7″ EP* starts off frenetically; with guest vocalist ‘Ruby’ singing about “throwing switches” and electrocuting people. The Residents start chanting “she is the Electrocutioner” whilst Snakefinger wails all over the tune. The second half of the song is like an eastern European waltz that Ruby softly sings along to. Classic stuff from 1978.

*The EP became the second side of the ‘Duck Stab’ LP, which consisted of the previously released ‘Duck Stab’ EP, along with this never released EP.

The Residents – Whoopy Snorp

‘Whoopy Snorp’ was a track that originally surfaced on a 1977 compilation put together by LAFMS called ‘Blorp Esette Volume 1’; with cover art by Don Van Vliet no less. This is classic ‘Fingerprince/Babyfingers’ era Residents (each album was a milestone during their first 10 years that one has to link styles of tracks to whatever LP was being produced at the time). The bands trusty 70’s drum machine acts as a carrier for ridiculous trumpet bursts and spoken word from what appears to be someone other than the singing Resident (that happened more often in the early days). A truly classic track that later resurfaced on the album ‘Residue’.

The Residents – Sinister Exaggerator

Well, what can be said about a classic track from a classic EP that hasn’t been said before? This is pure cartoon freakery; lysergic squats and chanting like rotten drains with the fruits of phonetic organisation are smeared over the top. Co-written with Snakefinger, who’s weirded out viola and Dracula-summoning Guitar jangles are all up over this track. From 1978’s truly seminal ‘Duck Stab’ EP.

Laurence Johns

Curator of Counter-Culture, Personal Development Consultant & Writer

Bubblegum Cage III

UK Post-Rock, Laptop Electronica, '90s Rap

atomicbark

Sci-Fi Radio Series...

Fractal Meat

Processes & Experiments /// Radio show on NTS /// Short-run tape label

Graham Dunning

Art | Music | Education

The eie Consumer Emporium

sound and art resource for irr. app. (ext.) and related projects

K R A U T L A N D S

"You made a believer out o'me"