Lost & Found: The Residents Are … Well, We Don’t Know
What the ever-loving hell is going on here? We don’t quite understand, but we can’t really take our eyes off of the above video. It’s like a train wreck happening in slow motion, but with weird guitars and wailing. Considering that, the name of the song, ‘Cry for the Fire,’ is pretty apt.
Operating under a thick cloud of anonymity, the Residents have been producing music and other art since the late ’60s. They released their first album, ‘Meet the Residents,’ in 1974. Before that, though, they’d been recording music under different names. There are supposedly tons of unreleased tapes in existence that the band made before officially adopting the name the Residents.
While the group has recorded a wealth of original material, they may be most well-known for their deconstructionist approach to cover tunes. The above track is their version of the Rolling Stones‘ ‘( I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.’ You’ve gotta be in a very special mood to enjoy this one. It comes from their rock ‘n’ roll concept album titled ‘Third Reich and Roll.’
Aside from being one of the biggest avant-garde artist collectives around, the Residents have also pioneered different media technologies into their work. At one point, they had plans to release the first three-sided record — as in real vinyl — by putting two sets of grooves onto one side of the record. The listener would get a different album depending on which groove he or she put the needle on. They scrapped the plans, though, when they discovered Monty Python had already done this.
Here’s one more track for your listening pleasure. It’s a medley of sorts, covering the Beatles‘ ‘Hey Jude’ and the Stones’ ‘Sympathy for the Devil.’