The Residents Mole Show
In 1982 – 83, The Residents toured extensively in support of their album Mole Show. They later released video of excerpts from shows in Washington DC, Madrid and San Francisco combined with early computer animations, performance art and drawings. Aired on Night Flight (USA Network) sometime in 1984 – 85 this was my first exposure to the California experimental weirdos. (I have a degraded VHS copy somewhere…) The Mole Show is the stage version of The Mole Trilogy, a series of albums which tell the story of two societies, the Moles and the Chubs, and the conflicts between them. To learn more about this specific tour, there is extensive history at their official site.
The Residents have created experimental music for over 40 years, their identities have always been closely guarded. Their now iconic large eyeball masks are only one of multiple stage personas. During the Mole Show, their presence was additionally shielded with large burlap scrims, back lighting, and stage hands and dancers dressed in Groucho Marx glasses.
If you don’t know The Residents work, this video is a good place to start to experience their bewildering and peculiar world. Keep music weird, people.