I then tried listening to it again, and boy, was I wrong about this album. While not The Residents' greatest release, it does have a lot of amazing moments, especially the second half of "Jack the Boneless Boy". That part is what heaven is like when you first enter it.
Other amazing songs include "Benny the Bouncing Bump" and "Lillie", and the characters are also incredibly bizarre, but at the same time, you can see the humanity in their souls. The album also contains some of the strongest lyrics ever written by The Residents.
"'I can live forever in formaldehyde', said the head."
The special edition includes extra tracks for the original album (which feature some nice introductions by Tex the Barker), and a second disc which features a live performance of Freak Show, along with some extra goodies. It's a nice little addition to the project.
There's also a Freak Show comic, and the stories are really interesting and the art is amazing, too. I don't know if there are more stories out there, but I've read Harry, Herman, Benny and Mickey's stories. Harry the Head is one of my favorite Residents characters.
Overall, while not being as great as other Residents albums, Freak Show is a really interesting project, and it does mark an important section of The Residents' history.
"Life is a lot like a freak show, 'cause nobody laughs when they leave."