- Mar 2 2021A playlist for fans of alt-metal legends, Faith No More
I Like: Faith No More
I Like: Faith No More
With a bold belief in their own foresight, Faith No More pioneered the alternative metal genre and inspired a generation of boundless, experimental expression with their eloquent angst.
After trying on a few names and enduring a decade of line-up changes, the band found Mike Patton in 1988. Patton took only two weeks to pen all the lyrics for, The Real Thing (1989), earning them their first Grammy nomination.
As the 90s drew closer, the haze of hairspray and spandex was waning, people were starting to feel things deeply again and Faith No More found themselves on top.
The I Like: Faith No More playlist packs a serious attitude hit. I recommend headphones. Loud. But, be warned – all that attitude may make you unintentionally strut.
Here are some of the highlights from this pivotal time in hard rock history.
Ashes to Ashes
Featured track, “Ashes to Ashes” was the first single from Faith No More’s sixth studio album, Album of the Year (1997). This track is a perfect example of Patton’s ability to harness the power of universal themes. His deeply meaningful lyrics are left wide open for interpretation, inviting the listener to draw on their own experiences to determine the meaning and create a personal connection to the underlying emotion.
Moving down the list we have, “Epic”, the second single from The Real Thing (1989). This breakthrough track was the band’s first No. 1 in the charts, marking their official arrival on the mainstream stage.
The music video was an MTV favourite, but caused some unexpected controversy when it sparked a feud between Faith No More and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Anthony Kiedis accused Mike Patton of stealing his long-haired, shirtless rapping style, while Patton made every effort to deny and diffuse. Sadly, from all accounts, the boys are still yet to kiss and make up.
“Stripsearch” from, Album of the Year (1998), was the last single the band released before taking a 10-year hiatus to work on other awesome stuff … like Mr. Bungle!
There is an enigmatic tapestry of emotions at play here that draws you into a more tranquil side of Faith No More. Still, the dark, brooding atmosphere enveloping the track will have you looking over your shoulder, even though there’s nothing heavy or scary about it.
From Out of Nowhere
“From Out of Nowhere”, also from 1989’s The Real Thing, is explained vividly by Patton as, “… hermetic philosophy, Ptolemaic cosmology… you know, your average commie/junkie jibber-jabber.” Again, he appears to have left it pretty wide open for interpretation!
The song establishes the band’s early intentions to redefine the metal genre with its textured layering of keyboards and synths - something that had previously been reserved exclusively for spandex-heavy power ballads.
Throughout the 80s and 90s Faith No More amused themselves with an all-out assault on metal orthodoxy. It takes bravery, vision and a whole lot of chutzpah to forge a path so unequivocally against the status quo as they did.
So, on the behalf of all that’s weird and wonderful in the world – Faith No More, we salute you.
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