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The Residents - God In Three Persons CD (album) cover

GOD IN THREE PERSONS

The Residents

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.74 | 36 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

TCat
Prog Reviewer
3 stars The Residents definitely have some interesting and original ideas and this album is an example of that. Sometimes, their weirdness speaks to me and other times I just don't know what to think. This album is a concept album, as are a good many of their albums, but it is formatted in a rock opera or play so to speak. Most of the album is spoken word set to music, and most of the music is electronic, but this time it isn't quite as minimalistic as some later albums would be. The spoken word is the narrator of the story, the very strange story, of a preacher and his relationship with conjoined twins who he believes have healing powers. Of course, strange emotions come about and you get a somewhat graphic story of love, lust, pain and desire, even though it is very strange and results in a separation of the twins. Yes, it's very odd.

The album starts out with an excellent track, well produced and very well orchestrated. The narration doesn't start in this track and it is actually the best track on here. The parts are sung by Laurie Amut who is credited as the song stylist. Her vocals are treated and also harmonized by multi-tracking. It gives a sound like a chorus of singers. The funny thing is that they sing the opening credits. The next track is where the narration starts and he gives a basic synopsis of the overall story. This one isn't a bad track either. The narrator has a southern drawl that persists throughout the album. At this point, the best way to listen to the album is with the lyrics, otherwise the sound of this somewhat deadpan delivery gets very annoying even faster than it does if you have them. So, either way, you have to deal with this delivery. There is some lyrical quality to the delivery however as it is done in a "talking blues" style, and the poem is written with the same stylization and meter as Edgar Allen Poe's "The Raven". This 2nd track will give you a fair idea of what the rest of the album is like. If you don't like this, you should just stop listening now. If you do like it, chances are you will be sick of it soon enough.

Even though the instrumental passages are much better developed in this album than some of The Residents other electronically lead albums, the narration is too distracting to really enjoy the instrumentals. The Residents remedied this by doing an instrumental version of the album, but was available in a very limited supply. Anyway, the album continues in this vein and I don't really find the story interesting enough to listen to more than once. You might be interested in the poetic delivery of the story, and no doubt a lot of time and talent went into writing the lyrics. But I just can't take the sound of the narrator's voice and the fact that even though the lyrical delivery is pretty spot on, the voice itself is annoying to me.

So, with the background singers giving some interesting parts and the instrumental passages being quite decent, I suppose there is something to this album. I find it hard to tune out the narrator though, which is the focus of the album after all. I can only give this a 3 star rating and can't help but wonder if the rating would have been better if the characterization of the narrator was better.

TCat | 3/5 |

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