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on July 23, 2005
Fingerprince, aka Tourniquet Of Roses, now that it includes much of what was on the Babyfingers E.P., is a classic seminal Residents release. Much of what is on this album is expanded upon exponentially on later Residents albums. The twisted nursery rhyme pop ditties paved way for Duck Stab/Buster & Dave and The Commercial Album. The narrative pop opera of Walter Westinghouse led the way for such epics as Mark Of The Mole and God In Three Persons. The bookends of You Yesyesyes point towards their later work with Snakefinger on The Big Bubble and Snakefinger's early albums.

Besides being a launching pad for the Residents' further creativity, this is also a fascinating and enjoyable album. What was once considered strange and avant garde is almost quaint these days I suppose, but the soundscapes behind the odd strange humourous lyrics and ideas is sheer aural pleasure. Six Things To A Cycle is a brilliant fusion of western composition and Indonesian Gamelan syncopation that has combines several haunting themes that burn into one's mind and lingers for weeks on internal autoplay. The aforementioned You Yesyesyes and it's sister piece You Yesyesyes Again are beautifully funny and sad melancholy themes.

An album where that charts out the group's future journey as it begins its travels all over the muiscal map, I recommend this to any acsual or adventurous listener.
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on June 6, 2014
A 1977 early Residents album is an intriguing listening experience. Snakefinger's guitar is here and that's a good start for "Fingerprince". There's a lot of brass instruments and the voices are audible and legible. The CD version features a bunch of extra songs that were actually from the EP "Baby Fingers". Originally intended as a three sided LP the project somehow was interfered with so this CD kind of gives it to us the way it was intended. Side one has short songs, side two has a lengthy epic in 6 parts and side 3 is an EP.

You Yesyesyes (3:00) opens the album with quirky synths and toy trumpets. Home Age Conversation (2:02) has oddball warblings on vocals, and repeated keyboard phrases. Godsong (3:42) is very weird, phased vocals chant and a rhythm of dissonant synths and brass try to make sense of it.

The short ones follow with instrumental March De La Winni (0:59), and minimalist chanting Bossy and (1:02), one minute movies really signalling the forthcoming "Commercial Album" in 1980 that was all songs less than a minute like a bunch of ads. Its amazing what you can slot into one minute; Residents are masters of this.

Boo Who? (2:49) is a quirky thing with boo hoo as the main chant and bizarre vocals in the verses; too monotonous to return to. Tourniquet Of Roses (3:14) has a jazzy sound, agonising brass, tortured synth and strangled vocals.

From "Butterfingers" EP is the addition of Monstrous Intro/Death In Barstow (2:03), Melon Collie Lassie (2:54), Flight Of The Bumble Roach (2:13), and Walter Westinghouse (7:56). Monstrous Intro/Death In Barstow is very different to the other album with a more lo fi minimalist vibe and thin drawling vocals. Melon Collie Lassie has more thin vocals and a deep rumbling bass synth that reminds me of the Residents albums to follow in the 80s. .

The real highlights of the EP are Flight Of The Bumble Roach, which is a manic demented voice over a rumbling and monotonous synth sequencer. This is highly experimental but all the more endearing as a stand out. Walter Westinghouse is an excellent track, perhaps the best on the whole album, and the Louisiana accent is a feature and lyrics making fun of Elvis; a target of The Residents along with The Beatles. This is an 8 minute song so has a lot of various sections. There's whispering, clinking, deep synths, loud strange nasal vocals, minimalist instruments, unnerving melodies, dark nursery rhymes, quirky humour, nonsensical lyrics and various characters; sounds like a Residents song to me. The last two minutes are almost unlistenable.

Six Things To A Cycle was originally in 6 parts on the vinyl but is put together as a 17:50 epic on the CD. It starts with innocent birds and percussion, then a scream that unnerves you. Lots of bells and tinkerings follow, and I am already totally lost and we still have 15 minutes to go. The bells tinker away for quite a while and are joined by odd chants. This is like an endurance test until we get to an ascending droning noise; a melancholy sound. It sounds like hitting glasses filled with levels of water with a triangle striker, and a sad synth played in another room somewhere. After a while this lengthy piece is too much for the ears and I am well and truly over it before the 10 minute mark. It ends with a repeated synth brass motif and it just goes on and on ad infinitum.

'You yesyesyes again' closes the album, bookending the thing as a kind of cycle. Overall this album is very inconsistent with some great moments and others you wish had not made it to the final cut. It is what it is and like most Residents albums is a hit and miss affair. I can manage 3 stars for some of the better material and the addition of the EP but this CD is quite a slog to get through in its entirety.
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on April 25, 2008
i think the title of the review sums it up quite nicely.
the early "residents" recordings are their best,imho and "fingerprince" might be the best of all.
les claypool must've listened to this record 10,000 times.
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on March 7, 2014
I first heard this many years ago and was very impressed the Band called the Residents has a special place in my listening of
style,s of music that is of that type that is not so easily categorized !!
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on July 12, 2014
The Residents previous two albums, those released commercially anyway, were demented takes on popular music, often directly referencing that music and deconstructing it in surprising and very Residential ways. Fingerprints is where the Residents really start to sound like the Residents. And by that I mean the compositions no longer rely on pop music tropes or dissection of said tropes or pop songs. On Fingerprints The Residents truly unloose their own brand of compositional crazy and it's a wild ride: jarring, psychedelic, original and demented with nods to outsider composers like Harry Partch and children's music. Not everything works, the Residents only got better with time, but this is where their particular esthetic took proper shape. NOTHING sounded like this in 1977, and little sounds like this today. These guys were pioneers and are still going strong, whoever they are.
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on March 1, 2001
This album is one of their best, along with the commercial album and duck stab/buster and glen. It's got all the things that make the residents what they are. The wacky instrumentation and the funny voices especially. Some nice enough tunes here. Yesysyes is pretty good, and has a bit when they play the 'third man' theme tune ...couldn't tell you what instrument though, it sounds very strange. Godsong is very good, my personal favourite. Really good lyrics and vocals, heavy thudding bass playing, and crappy sounding piano. walter westinghouse is a good song with loads of funny voices. six things to a cycle is a decent exercise in percussion. There are other enjoyable tunes too like tourniquet of roses and bossy, there are no really bad songs's worth the listen. Thank you
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on February 4, 1999
This is one of the best records I own. The songs tie together so well it is hard to beleive that this was once actually two albums combined to one for cd release. Very unexpectedly this has become the most lisened album I own!
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on December 7, 2014
I especially enjoy that 17+ minutes long opus, #12. But the whole album is a joy to any fan of this band called the Residents!
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on September 28, 2015
Love it BUT .... It arrived with a cracked front case
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on October 22, 2015
Residents at their foremost creative peak!
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