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Residents - Third Reich Rock N Roll

  by Adam Wood

published: 20 / 11 / 2005

Residents - Third Reich Rock N Roll
Label: Mute Records
Format: CD


Ironic and disturbingly briliant anti rock 'n' roll on reissue of the Residents 1976 album 'Third Rock 'n' Roll

Achtung! The Residents are coming! Their terrifying third album was originally released in 1976 (Just in time for the ironic fascist iconography of the early punk years), to much consternation in their native California where no-one got the joke. A self imposed artistic exile led the Residents to develop ideas that contemporary American rock and roll was stolid, vapid, bland and above all fascistic. As a result, the band decided to create their own Album Orientated Rock record and the end product was the disturbingly brilliant 'Third Reich and Roll'. Emphasising all the failures of rock and roll as it became commoditised and hence sanitised (sentiments echoed by British punk rockers), the Residents created a two track, elaborately designed and remarkably well publicised art work rather than simply a piece of music. It was a statement that expressed the dull fascism that pervaded a rock and roll that had been stolen from youth, made into money and was self censoring. 'Third Reich and Roll' did this by deconstructing rock and roll records and resetting them in the depths of Nazi Germany, bastardising records by the likes of Aerosmith, Peter Frampton and Deep Purple. Their re-working of the Doors’ ‘Light My Fire’ turns a tawdry stoner sex anthem into a gothic book burning parade with a goose-stepping Swastika swing band in tow. In its deluxe new packaging, this record is a must even if just to document an early insight into the punk mentality of post modern negation. The Residents absolve themselves by stating that they ‘Don’t support racism, Catholicism, fascism, Judaism, cynicism, realism or journalism,’ and as the last track ‘Hitler Was a Vegetarian’ ascends into an icy death march rendition of ‘Hey Jude’ you’ll realise you don’t either.

Track Listing:-
1 Swastikas On Parade
2 Hitler Was A Vegetarian

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