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Faith No More - dissolved in 1998 as a band - are now in the original cast of 1998 back again, since 2009 on stage and - 18 years after the last studio recording - with a new album "Sol Invictus" ("The unconquered sun"). The fans already breath quicker: does the band with "Sol Invictus" still have the power of surprising innovations like two decades ago - this question asks probably everybody, who once experienced the crossover between metal, rock, rap, chanson, punk in the 80s & 90s...
"Sol Invictus" starts quietly and rather unspectacular; Piano, march-like, subdued drums, pulsating basslines, sonorous chant mixed with clean vocals - almost a ballad. Followed by the speedy and aggressive "Superhero", previously produced and known as a single in March 2015, a spicy Punk/Pro-rock mixture in the best tradition of Faith No More.
"Sunny Side Up" reveals the enormous talent of the band to cross styles and pour into a clear composition with concise hooks, suspense and changing tempos. But with "Separation Anxiety" the album starts to become really exciting, crazy, wild and gloomy. Those who have followed the musical projects in recent years by singer Mike Patton – from Fantomas, Peeping Tom to "Mondo Cane", the interpretation of Italian pop of the 50s - may discover from now on how these vocal influences are woven in the Faith No More structures. "Separation Anxiety" begins on an almost gothic-dark rumbling bass, Patton whispers, purrs, sings, the song picks up velocity and energetically rocks on.
Still further stretch the vocals together with these melded instrumental bow at the following awesome song "Cone Of Shame". Starting as a kind of introverted Shoegaze with reverberant guitar intro, broken by a recitation, explodes suddenly the song as a hard rocker; independent-gloom copulates with Grunge. And get immediately afterwards with "Rise Of The Fall" a charming, melodic Reggae including attitudes of Chanson in the neck... and with collapsing choruses between Punk and The Bee Gees. By this time, the fan of the 90s leans back and can breathe calmly: The band has not forgotten how to lace sharp surprise packages.
But there´s still a lot more in the box: the dark cinematic "Black Friday" with mariachi sound, like from a distorted Tarantino movie. Followed by "Mother Fucker" - on the end of 2014 already released as the first single - which integrates inside the entire course of the album beautifully and with stronger effect than solo. And then the bizarre – already in live shows presented - slowly and somewhat psychotic, as a slow ballad beginning "Matador"; but driven by drums and bass as a heavy framework into the state of a pathetic rock song, traversed by the mixture of a hoarse voice recitation and melodic vocals. Finally, "From The Dead" is a Schlager... Well, a Faith No More-Schlager-song, but with a melody and an appearance like from the 60s to cuddle - with the dead?
Conclusion: There will certainly be those between the listeners, who think that earlier everything was better and Faith No More, too, earlier they were wilder, faster, more chaotic... Well, may be. Perhaps they have become a little more subtle, older and wiser, and the chaotic element has got more concept, the so-called "crossover" has gained substance. The experience of recent decades run like a red thread through the musical body - and that just sounds exciting and is anything but ordinary. Mike Patton pulls rousing his extensive register. Hearable, this is Faith No More, you can hear the demands that they place on themselves, to offend the fun, to develop new ideas and still not to rest, even to let the lyrics put emphasis on a few social and political statements. The 18-year break between then and now has been closed. A worthy comeback album with great moments, which now continues its course on an international tour.
Tracklist: 1. Sol Invictus 2:37
2. Superhero 5:15
3. Sunny Side Up 2:59
4. Separation Anxiety 3:44
5. Cone Of Shame 4:40
6. Rise Of The Fall 4:09
7. Black Friday 3:19
8. Motherfucker 3:33
9. Matador 6:08
10. From The Dead 3:06
Mike Bordin – drums, percussion, backing vocals (1981–1998, 2009–present)
Bill Gould – bass, backing vocals (1981–1998, 2009–present)
Roddy Bottum – keyboard, backing vocals (1981–1998, 2009–present)
Mike Patton – lead vocals (1988–1998, 2009–present)
Jon Hudson – guitars, backing vocals (1996–1998, 2009–present)
Faith No More 2015 in Europe live:
29.05. Nürburging (Germany)
31.05. München (Germany)
02.06. Mailand (Italy)
04.06 Wien (Austria)
05.06. Hradec Kralove (Czech Republic)
06.06. Berlin (Germany)
08.06. Krakau (Poland)
10.06. Bratislava (Slovakia)
12.06. Landgraf (Netherlands)
13.06. Donington (UK)
14.06. Glasgow (UK)
17.06. London (UK)
18.06. London (UK)
20.06. Clisson (France)
21.06. Dessel (Belgium)
23.06. Hamburg (Germany)
26.06. Norrköping (Sweden)
27.06. Seinajoki (Finland)
28.06. Odense (Denmark)