The Residents

The Residents

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Why Are The Residents? The Louisiana-born members of the enigmatic avant-pop collective known as The Residents operate out of a shadowy alternate version of San Francisco. They have no names, no faces, no gender, no age, no race, no identities at all. In a word, they’re FREAKS, yet over the past half century and across roughly 50 albums—from 1972’s Santa Dog to their most recent, 2020’s Metal, Meat & Bone—they’ve thrown the culture into a virtual mixmaster, deconstructing, reconstructing, and reflecting it back at us through an alien prism. While you were looking the other way, they had a radical and profound influence on how we perceive music, video, performance and multimedia. Recognized for their top-hatted eyeball head disguises, The Residents have always been eclectic, groundbreaking adventurers working by their own rules within their own reality, creating a music unlike any other, unbounded by era or trends. Each new project is an idea come to life, and no two albums sound even remotely alike. You have no clue what you might get when you pick up a new Residents recording. It could be a musical epic poem about Siamese Twins, or a multi-part radio drama about crime, or an electronic soundscape, or a collection of minute-long toe-tappers, or an album’s worth of songs about train accidents. Add to that an overarching aesthetic, mythology and philosophy,

and listening to The Residents becomes a lifelong undertaking. May God have mercy on your soul. -Jim Knipfel

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