Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Residents Return

Last night John and I had the privilege (?) to witness the avant-garde antics of The Residents, live on stage at The Trocadero.

For those unaware, The Residents are a music and visual arts collective who have created over forty albums, numerous musical short films, several CD-ROM and DVD projects and undertaken six major world tours. Originally formed by Jay Clem, Homer Flynn, Hardy Fox and John Kennedy, the band successfully maintained member anonymity for years.

The Residents entered the world of electronic synthesis in the 1970s during a time of legendary exploration and growth. When pioneers like Robert Moog and Don Buchla were creating analog synthesizers that were finally affordable for the masses, The Residents eagerly became one of the earliest groups to embrace the new technology.

In 1969 the group began to make the first of their unreleased tapes. Their first single (Santa Dog) came out in 1972 - a decade later Clem and Kennedy left the band, and though Flynn and Fox have kept the band active since that time, purists consider post-1982 material to be substandard.

I disagree :)

Last night The Residents brought their multi-media stage show to Philadelphia for a final test run before tonight's official opening of THE BUNNY BOY World Tour (3 nights in NYC then around the world they go!).

With THE BUNNY BOY, The Residents have created another off beat pop gem. Although I can describe the show and still not give away anything - the fact is, The Residents are truly indescribable. Part madness, part creative genius and toss in the anonymous six-foot men in bunny ears and black body masks - as well as the creepiest crazy-old-man-stalker in a bunny suit and you have The Residents live and in color.

The audience was just as unique as the performers; a mix of music aficionados out for the unique experience and computer geeks simply out for a change of pace; half the fun was scanning the crowd from the my balcony perch to see the faces of those below; rapt in wonder over the antics on the stage.

The Residents have a complete internet series based on this performance - you should check it out if you have time to process what the hell you're watching!

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