Video: Faith No More Performs In Studio For BBC Radio 1

Video Still from Faith No Move on BBC Radio 1

Video Still from Faith No Move on BBC Rock Show on Radio 1

Faith No More has released a video of the band performing a studio session for the BBC Radio 1 Rock Show at the famed Maida Vale Studios. The recording took place on June 16th. Video footage of the band performing ‘Superhero’ from Sol Invictus (Reclamation Records, Ipecac) can be seen at this link or below:

 

Songs performed on the show include:

‘Superhero’

‘Separation Anxiety’

‘Sunny Side Up’

‘This Guy’s In Love With You’ (Burt Bacharach cover)

‘Matador’

faith no more sol invictus album cover low res

Faith No More – Le Butcherettes: Live at The Orpheum, Boston MA

Faith No More, by Hillarie Jason Photography

It isn’t every day that Faith No More comes to play a show in New England or anywhere else. Nor is it every week, month or year. In fact it’s more like every couple of decades, so when they scheduled a date on their tour in support of the new album, Sol Invictus, on Monday, May 11, at The Orpheum in Boston, I knew it would be one of the most anticipated shows of the year and would sell out in a matter of hours, which of course it did.

Many of us traveling from the western part of the state to get to this show were treated to some stupendous traffic on the Mass Pike because one of those Bolt buses literally exploded on the highway. Even still you probably didn’t miss the opening act, Le Butcherettes, who played an extremely long set of something like an hour and fifteen minutes. Honestly, they were pretty good, but I couldn’t help but feel sorry for any band opening up this show. Most people were crammed into the lobby area like fish in a can, downing some sort of alcoholic swill instead of watching them. All they wanted to see was the band that has been absent for a generation. I’m not sure if the singer was acting out as part of her stage act or if it was along the lines of “hey pay attention,” but about 5 songs in she ferociously ripped off her candy apple red high heels and chucked them up into the balcony.

Faith No More, by Hillarie Jason Photography

Faith No More started the set as they have for each show on this tour. With the stage and band members resembling something like a Buddhist slumber party version of A Clockwork Orange or maybe your Aunt Dotties funeral; everything wrapped in white socks or painted white and cheerful sprays of flowers lining the front and back of the stage; the band said hello with the song ‘Motherfucker’.

The set, which included at least one track from every studio album, was top to bottom flawless. Both the old and new songs were fresh and vibrant. They played like a band that had never stopped touring together and seemed even more cohesive than when I saw them in ‘97. The energy was palpable and the crowd responded in turn, but since The Orpheum is a very old seated theater without the standard “pit” it was more of a stand in your seat and scream your head off kind of show. Although, when I went up into the balcony, I could literally feel it bouncing up and down quite dramatically. It was pretty terrifying and I found myself checking to make sure I knew the location of the closest exit to run to in the event of it collapsing.

Faith No More, by Hillarie Jason Photography

They had some fun with the crowd during the song ‘Midlife Crisis.’ Stopping mid-song just before the third chorus and letting the crowd fill in the words, Mike Patton then asked, “You proud of yourselves now?” Much to my amusement and the bewilderment of everyone in the theater, they continued the song after a brief pause to the tune of the Boz Scaggs’ song ‘Lowdown.’ And yes, I have had ‘Lowdown’ in my head since the show. Thanks for that.

Faith No More, by Hillarie Jason Photography

Banter between songs was kept at a minimum other than a quick joke from Roddy Bottum regarding the age of The Orpheum as well as Mike Patton singling out one “hippy dude” about what he thought of Le Butcherettes. Though I had to laugh when Patton announced it was their last song (which it wasn’t) and the crowd erupted into a sea of boos to which he responded, “Boo my ass mother fuckers. Enjoy it. Shut the fuck up!” Enjoy it, we did.

Welcome back, Faith No More. You have been missed.

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WORDS AND PHOTOS BY HILLARIE JASON

Faith No More – Sol Invictus

faith no more sol invictus album cover low res

People love a great comeback story. Anything that shows a triumph against some kind of adversity, especially if you created it yourself, they will lap that up all day long. Some musical acts leave at the top of their game, while others split just in time before fizzing out creatively. When it came to Faith No More’s acrimonious split in the late 90s, it felt like it might have been coming for a while. The band certainly did not burn out their creative spark, nor did they wear out their welcome with fans. They were so prolific, so versatile, and so smart, you knew there would never be another act quite like them. When they came back in 2009 as a live act, they opened their shows with ‘Reunited’, the soft R&B song from 70’s duo Peaches and Herb, as a nod to the fans. After testing the waters with each other, the band decided they could stick together and make new music. Well the long wait is over and Sol Invictus (Reclamation Recordings/Ipecac) is here to put to rest any doubts you may have had about their comeback.

Opening with the title track, the band picks up basically where they left off with 1997’s Album of The Year (Slash). The track sounds right at home with their past, yet has some interesting elements on its own. Gradually easing in like a foot in a fuzzy slipper, it’s an “ah yes…” moment you get to have with yourself as the track envelopes you. Recurring lyrical themes on the album about regeneration, reinvention and that other “re” word we spoke of already begin popping up here too. ‘Superhero’ reminds one that despite being remembered for big commercial hits, at their most accessible they were never a true singles band that was pappy and easily digestible. ‘Sunny Side Up’ is an angsty ballad with great lyrical grist. Most of the tracks have a sonic kinship of the beloved King For A Day…Fool For A Lifetime (Slash) album too: hidden meanings, lyrical twists, massive piano and bass driven songs as a foil for Mike Patton’s emotive soulfulness and rubbery larynx.

Faith No More, by Dustin Rabin

Faith No More, by Dustin Rabin

‘Separation Anxiety’ is the heaviest track on Sol Invictus and certainly if you are the type of person that pines for the first three FNM albums, this is the song that will resonate with you the most. ‘Cone of Shame’ is wildly dynamic and strange, but also driving and melodious. Patton shows off the most of his insane vocal ability here too. The perfect blend of all of the rollicking elements of the band you want in one track.

Although Billy Gould, who produced the album (except for Patton’s vocals) is always seen as a driving force of the band and definitive mouthpiece, Roddy Bottum’s keyboards dominate this album. All of his weird 80s synth-pop craziness, mixed with his deft jazzbo piano stylings are ever-present in songs such as the torchy ‘Rise of the Fall’, the sinister yet beautiful ‘Matador’, and elsewhere.

‘Black Friday’ is a vampy Cramps-style number, complete with slapback guitars and whipping beats. This is also the track where guitar stands out the most, lending to the idea that without being the heavy guitar driven band of their youth, there is room for all of the parts of the monster to flourish properly. ‘Motherfucker’ is a conundrum of a song. You intrinsically laugh at the notion of a clever pop song as a massive ‘fuck you’ to those in power. Mike Patton as a new-age politicized Beat Poet? Why not! However, the song is undeniably subversive and smart, as is all the best material this band has put out. The build up to the chorus is glorious, Patton’s notes held like the vibrato of a well-bowed cello, hitting you where you live.

‘Back From the Dead’ may sound like a 60s slice of pop, right down to its jangly guitar and churchy “ahs” and “oohs” backing vocals. However the sentiment of “Welcome home my friend…’ in the lyrics could totally be a very meta, and self-referencing. After all; resurrection may be for those who got it wrong the first time, but the same cannot be said of Faith No More whose return is a welcome and worthy one. Let’s hope it lasts as long as it can.

9.0/10

KEITH CHACHKES