The Residents
Duck Stab



by JAStewart USER (12 Reviews)
January 16th, 2006 | 12 replies

Release Date: 1978 | Tracklist

The Residents are considered one of the worlds most unusual musical groups. Having influences and infuencing such artists as Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart, one can only imagine what The Residents sound like. I'll tell you right now; the music is no easily accessable at all. When you listen to this album, you may think it is the worst thing you have ever heard, or you may just find it weird. You may however also think that this album is revolutionary and completely amazing, like I do.

The Residents, best known for their unusual musical style and also known for donning huge eyeball masks. The Residents have never revealed their identity, because they believe that music should not be about who they are, their race or gender, and that it should be just about music. And thats exactly what this is. Duck Stab is a revolutionary release. I wouldn't reccomend this to any fan of music, but for music fans with open mines or fans of other experimental and avantgarde artists, like Frank Zappa or Captain Beefheart.

1. Constaninople (2:23)

The opening track is very weird indeed. There is a distortion guitar playing static, high pitched notes while a keyboard or synth play a random accending scale very quickly. The bass plays single notes. The singing is very Nasal (think Les Claypool with a nose-block). I guarentee that this track will take more an just a few listens to get into, give it 7, maybe 11? The synth sounds like trumpets towards the end. The song is a tad short, but it is still a great song.


2. Sinister Exaggerator (3:28)

Very, very creepy song. Very. The bass is single sliding down notes but the guitar is tremolo picked notes, what are rather minor and dissonant to each other. The 'interlude' during the tremolo guitar is also very evil as it it just dissonant chords going up and down a scale doubled by a synth. The singing is where it becomes VERY creepy. The vocal style is nasal but it is over dubbed with many voices which are higher and lower pitched, but you can't make out the words of these over vocalsists, so it just sounds like wails or screams. Primus cover this piece on their album, Misc Debris, by the way.


3. The Booker Tease (1:04)

This song is amazing, despite its length. It sounds like a small jazz club sounding piece. There is a guitar, bass drums and horns and also sax. Nice little interlude song.


4 Blue Rosebuds (3:07)

This opens with the most unusual guitar line that I have yet to figure out. The imagery given off reminds me of a water fall. The singer is singing about love, and everything is quiet serene and happy, until the main part of the song. The song goes evil, as Residents do, and there is the most unusual high pitched voice entering, then after that bit, the songs returns to the main deep vocaled singer though he sounds more sad singing this verse. This song is very hard to get into, simple because of the middle section, but after a few listens, you'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll enjoy.


5. Laughing Song (2:12)
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha! That is what the first vocals to enter say. The music is very difficult to describe, it sounds like some fúcked up violin or fiddle or something. Prior to the verse, while the laugh is occuring, synth decends the scale too. The singing reminds me of Primus a lot (since this album is a great influence to Primus, I should say Primus sound like this, not this sounds like Primus, chances are you'll have heard Primus though). The vocals are very 'catchy'.. I want to say.. well, addictive anyway. The lyrics are pretty nonsense, but I can somehow imaging a pirate singing them. Me and my messed up head ay? Yeah, its a great song.


6. Bach Is Dead (1:11)

Another almost ditty like piece. Very basic, a squeak, with a slighty more complex bass line than the Residents would usually have. The lyrics until the is "Bach is dead", but I love when th proper vocals enter, as the harmony s just fantastic. The song ends to quickly. I think that the squeaky noise represent a cart being pushed and this is a travelling song.


7. Elvis And His Boss

Stars with tinkle bells and light bass, when I first heard this song, I didn't know what to expect, but it jumps right into what I now call the greatest rock'n'roll song I've ever heard. The clean guitar sounds totally out of key, but it somehow works. The synth is very loud, but it somehow works. The bass is very funky/rock 'n rolly. The singing sounds just like a rock and roll band, so this is probably the most accessable song on the album, besides The Booker Tease. Structure in this song is quite loose, which jst adds to the effect of the song.


Overall, this album is completely revolutionary, and was very unique in its day and age. I love you Residents. x


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user ratings (120)

Comments:Add a Comment 
January 16th 2006


I really really want to hear this, I'm going to pick this up as soon as I can find a copy.
Good review. You avoided using words like "amazing" and "awesome" and when you did use them you gave a description of the track to back up your opinion. Nice work.

January 16th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

Zebra, add me to MSN - icon_redseal at

Two-Headed Boy
January 21st 2006


^^^can i add you?
just kidding. nice review, and i agree with Zebra. you managed a 4.5 without being an @$$kisser.

April 23rd 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

I love this album. Great review too

July 7th 2009


Album Rating: 4.5

"Duck Stab" on its own is just an EP. It was released as an album soon after with "Buster & Glen" as the B-side, the whole thing being "Duck Stab/Buster & Glen". It's all the same style stuff recorded for the same album, like how "Fingerprince" had a "third side" released as an EP.

August 11th 2009


god this is so good

April 4th 2013


Album Rating: 4.0

This and Buster & Glen are usually on the same album no? At least thats what I got.

Either way shit goes proportionally hard.

Digging: Walknut - Graveforests And Their Shadows

August 12th 2013


Album Rating: 4.5

I think I went too far in rock when I discovered these guys... eyes

Digging: Nina Simone - Pastel Blues

March 2nd 2014


Album Rating: 4.5

I'm confused, is this the Duck Stab/Butter & Glen album or the Duck Stab EP? Now I don't know which one is the one that I listened to long time ago

May 7th 2014


Album Rating: 4.5

This was moved to the EP's section, I think technically Duck Stab!/Buster & Glen is not in the database anymore haha

May 7th 2014


Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah, I know, but the fusion of both, the album, should be in the album section

September 17th 2014


Best band ever

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