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Meet the Residents

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Editors’ Notes

Even with decades of hindsight, The Residents' 1974 debut album still sounds as strange as it is sui generisMeet the Residents is an outright assault on preconceptions about rock and (in the broadest sense) pop. Absurdist lyrics, offbeat vocal chants, primal percussion, and discordant piano stabs are all part of the musical menu, but so's a sort of postmodern-classical avant-garde sensibility, entailing sophisticated snatches of melody and harmony amid all the carefully controlled carnage. The lengthy closing suite, "N-ER-GEE (Crisis Blues)," encompasses everything from someone goofily singing along to the original recording of The Human Beinz's '60s garage-rock hit "Nobody but Me" to a snatch of drunken barbershop-style vocal harmony, ending one of the oddest albums in "rock" on an appropriately out-there note.

Customer Reviews

Doesn't Deserve a Star??? I Give It 5

To The person that stated that this release doesn't even deserve one star... I looked at your other reviews. Go back to your Jonas Bros. and Taylor Swift. What were you doing listening to this anyway? This is for people with a wider musical grasp. No, it doesn't follow the "intro-verse-chorus-verse - chorus - bridge - repeat, formula. No, you will not find this on a karaoke comp. I don't bother leaving bad reviews for the GLEE soundtrack because it's obviously outside of the realm of what I listen to. Why would you go out of your way to write a bad review for a cd that's obiviously beyond your scope of musical understanding. I love this CD and think that it is bold in it's experimentation and exciting in it's DIY aesthetic. If I ever lost my copy of this CD I'd get another as soon as I could.


This album is perhaps the strangest i have ever heard and is aw-inspiring. If you dont like it, fine. Its your opinion, but i enjoyed it.

A Shameless, Timeless Classic.

It's always a beautiful thing when there is an album from 40ish years ago that still sounds fresh. Better yet, it's even better to hear an album from so long ago inspire such an eclectic style of music, which is avant-garde.

Much like Can's Tago Mago, the sound of this album is unreplicable and 100% pure. Much like Talk Talk's Laughing Stock, nobody has made an album that sounds anything like it, and as much as it has inspired other artists, they all simply can't come close to smething this genius.

As much as I'd love to leave my opinion out of this review, my favorite part has to be the question that I think somebody asked in an earlier response: How the hell did these guys get a record deal? Bands these days aren't making that much money, so they have been making whatever kind of music they feel like just for the hell of it. But that wasn't the case with Meet The Residents. Somehow, they recorded this brilliant music, made it onto some obscure label, and continue to grow in influence today, which is practically any bands dream. And they're still together to this day, how cool is that?

Anyway, I strongly reccomend checking this album out for many reasons. It's one of my favorite all-time albums, it's one of the most original albums created, and you may learn something about yourself listening to it.


Formed: 1966 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Over the course of a recording career spanning several decades, the Residents remained a riddle of Sphinx-like proportions; cloaking their lives and music in a haze of willful obscurity, the band's members never identified themselves by name, always appearing in public in disguise -- usually tuxedos, top hats and giant eyeball masks -- and refusing to grant media interviews. Drawing inspiration from the likes of fellow innovators including Harry Partch, Sun Ra, and Captain Beefheart, the Residents...
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