Like their other recordings from between 1967 and 1972, Baby Sex is not considered by The Residents to be part of their official discography, however, of all their unreleased tapes between 1967 and 1971, almost the entirety of Baby Sex has been later released by the band across a number of compilations - perhaps implying that the group consider this tape to be more representative of their later direction as The Residents than the ones before it.
Consisting of various studio recordings and excerpts from the group's open mic performance at The Boarding House in San Francisco in 1971, Baby Sex marks the first recorded appearance of the group's collaborators, guitarist/violinist Philip "Snakefinger" Lithman, and the mysterious N. Senada, an avant-garde composer found by Lithman in the Bavarian woods and introduced to the group.
Developing the band's predilection for subverting popular music, Baby Sex includes parodies of Tim Buckley, Led Zeppelin, and a cover of "King Kong" by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. "For Doorknob" is the first recorded appearance of night-club singer Peggy Honeydew.
The tape is notorious for its original cover art, which features an image from a pornographic ad from Denmark, depicting a grown woman performing fellatio on a baby. Considered artistically rude to the group at that time, it would be considered child pornography today. This image would also later be printed on a limited run of t-shirts (rarely seen, for obvious reasons, though some remain in the hands of collectors).
Track listing Edit
- We Stole This Riff
- Baby Sex
- Deepsea Diver Song
- King Kong (Zappa)
- Cantaten to der Dyin Prunen
- Somethin' Devilish
- The Fourth Crucifixion
- Hallowed Be Thy Wean 1971
The Warner Bros. Album and Baby Sex demo tapes were both broadcast to the public in their entirety on KBOO-FM radio in Portland, Oregon, during a Residents-themed radio festival in 1977. Most versions of these two tapes that are available are home recordings of this broadcast, although higher quality copies from an earlier generation copy have recently become available in a limited series of bootleg CD-Rs.
It is said that these reels were stolen from the band's archives by a former associate and later made available for profit, and as with their other early demo tapes and reels, The Residents and The Cryptic Corporation do not approve of their availability.
Excerpts from Baby Sex have since become available on the Residue of the Residents, Daydream B-Liver, ERA B474 and The Delta Nudes' Greatest Hiss compilations, but otherwise has not officially been released in its entirety other than the aforementioned 1977 broadcast.
- "The Fourth Crucifixion" contains an excerpt from a radio interview with Snakefinger and N. Senada. The interview was also included in the UWEB compilation, Daydream B-Liver.
- An excerpt of "Cantaten to der Dyin Prunen" was released in the UWEB Snakefinger tribute, Philip Charles Lithman a.k.a. Snakefinger. The song is also referenced in "You Yesyesyes" from Fingerprince.
- The long collage piece "Hallowed Be Thy Wean 1971" contains early studio recorded versions of "Kamikaze Lady" and "Eloise", both of which were later filmed for inclusion in the Vileness Fats film project. "Eloise" was also re-recorded in 1984 for Whatever Happened To Vileness Fats?, and again in 2001 for Icky Flix.