Latest news updates from Faith No More and related projects.
First up some very insightful and revealing interviews...
FAITH NO MORE'S PRODUCER, SONGWRITER AND BASSIST ON THE SONGWRITING CRAFT, THE RE-RELEASE OF THEIR FIRST ALBUM, AND THE REAL REASONS BEHIND GUITARIST JIM MARTIN'S DEPARTURE.
On listening to his own music.
“Generally not. If I’m in a club and some song’s playing I will stop talking to people and listen to it just to pick apart the production [laughs] and find errors.”
On his personal musical history.
“I started off playing when I was like twelve. If you wanted to be a musician in, I guess it’d be 1974-75, basically prog rockers were the guys that dominated. If you wanted to be a musician, those were the guys you’d look up to.”
“When I was about fifteen, sixteen I discovered Punk Rock and got rid of all the prog stuff and kind of went into just writing songs and feeling good about playing and not trying to be the best, technically, the best at anything. I kind of continued with that and Punk Rock kind of turned into Post-Punk where it became a little bit more sophisticated, a little more interesting tones and rhythms and a lot of different directions.”
On The Real thing.
“It’s a rock record but I was thinking of other things too. We all kind of have really broad tastes and you know there was this kind of path that was put up before us, like, ‘Okay you are this rock band now and you are hanging out with all these other rock bands.’ We were writing songs that weren’t necessarily rock and people were like, you know, ‘Why are you doing THAT?’ We kind of had this moment where we could do what we were supposed to do or we could do what we wanted to do and make it out the other side and still feel good about what we’re doing and that’s kind of what we did.”
On Angel Dust.
“I mean, I like the record. We were really happy when we did it. It was a real labor, a labor of love. It was a battle. I like what we did....One of these days I’m going to figure out what it is that people [love so much].”
On Jim Martin.
“To be honest, he did some great work. He could play. He’s got a great tone, he had a great approach to things that we couldn’t find from other people at the time. We had a lot of good times with him on the road. So, you know, it was a tough split.....We don’t really act on things until it’s too late and it probably could’ve been done a little easier. But in any case, it would be great to have him be involved in something because there’s enough water under the bridge after this many years that it’s not really that personal anymore.”
On We Care A Lot.
“The drummer [Bordin] and I were getting our voice together. We were kind of learning how we worked together because he’s really prominent with the kick drum and he’s really down beat oriented and I was kind of learning how we worked together. I actually wrote the chords in ‘We Care a Lot’ but it didn’t sound ... [laughs] very good rhythmically because I did it by myself and we came into the rehearsal room and we were just fooling around with beats and he had this beat and I came and I put my bass to the beat and that was it. It worked real fast. We knew within two minutes that was the way to go. It was almost too easy and too simple but we didn’t catch ourselves and overthink it. It felt right and we just kept going.”
On FNM fan community (us!)
“It’s totally organized and they’ve totally got their shit together and it’s a great spot to be....not so much thinking about record sales but thinking about like this cool community that that has gotten connected because of your music. It’s almost bigger than the band itself.”
Roddy Bottum, Billy Gould, and Mike Bordin look back on their game-changing, pre-Patton 1985 debut.
Roddy Bottum: A lot of that stuff was just me and Billy and Mike in this space we had in San Francisco. And we were really kind of like spiritual about what we would come up with. We had this whole concept of monotonous, hypnotic riffs that we would play over and over, which felt kind of cult-y at the time. We would literally spend hours creating these loops, and I remember the riff to "As The Worm Turns" was one of those things.
Bottum: James Hetfield was really good friends with Jim, and Hetfield used to wear a Faith No More shirt, which really helped open the door to this huge metal attention thing. I personally would never, ever considered us metal. Sure we had that chunka-chunka thing going on, but we were never trying to go for that vibe. So it was a super surprise to me. I was like, "Really? The guys from Metallica are into this?" [laughs] I would just assume it was because they were friends with Jim, but clearly it was a flavor that other metal kids were into and it opened the floodgates to a bunch of metal admirers. And that was huge for us, because it wasn't what we started out as, that's for sure.
Bordin: It's a tough subject with anybody that knew him, as his father once said to me a long time ago when I said to him, "It's been 20 years and I still don't think I'm over it." He told me, "You're never going to get over it." But one thing I gotta say is that there's a club in this world, and there's only two members, and the name of the club is "Drummers who've played with Cliff Burton, Jason Newstead and Robert Trujillo". There's only two members in this whole world, and that's me and Lars.
Bordin: I really wanted to tour with that guy. I loved playing with him. As far as all the good things I can say about Mike Patton and his musical breadth of vision and skill, Trey is right there with him. Trey was really an ultimate, ultimate weapon. He could do the curly stuff on "Star A.D.". He could do the stuff appropriate on "Caralho Voador", that's a little bit of a samba. But then again, he was the guy who helped us do "Ugly in the Morning" and "The Gentle Art of Making Enemies" and especially "Cuckoo for Caca". We had a part we didn't know what to do with on that song and he was like, "Well, why don't you do this?" And we were all like, "Oh my God."
Was Mr. Bungle on your radar back in the We Care A Lot days?
Bordin: We played the college up there with Chuck. It was a small college. But there were only like three people in the audience [laughs]. And after the show, this guy comes up to us and says, 'Hey man, I'm really glad you played, thank you for coming. But you understand, school is not in session yet which is why nobody is here.' So we played up there when school is on vacation. But I'm talking to this guy and he was like, 'I got this band, here take my tape.' And that was Trey, and the band was Mr. Bungle, and the album he gave us was The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny. He gives me the tape and we play it later doing whatever we were doing, and Jim loves it, because it sounds like Slayer, it sounds like speed metal with death growls and all this crazy stuff. And I'll never forget it; Jim turns around and says to us, 'This guy has got to be this giant fat guy with all the power that he's got in his voice!' And time goes by, and then when we were looking for a new singer, Jim was like, 'Let's get that big fat guy from Mr. Bungle!' But the funny thing is, we saw them again when we did a tour of 20 or 30 shows with the Chili Peppers back in the day. It was actually Hillel's last tour, it was very interesting.
So this tour comes to San Francisco and we're playing The Fillmore, and I see Mike Patton. So I go to him, 'Hey, Jim really likes you and you should sing in our band.' But then Mike says to me, 'Oh we don't sound like that anymore.' [laughs] So he gives me another demo tape, which was Bowel of Chiley, and it was like fucking Madness meets James Bond. It was this secret super spy ska music, and it was awesome. And I was like, 'Oh dude, I'm so glad you don't sound like that anymore, because who wants to be one dimensional?' And he was like, 'Yeah, man.' That was the one thing that gave him maybe even a second of thinking about joining our band, that we would be available or open to evolution. Because I didn't say, 'Oh fuck that, you gotta sound like The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny, because that's what you do!' I just think in that regard right there, that's really the thing that happened with Mr. Bungle. They evolved, and we applauded it. Well, three of the four guys in the band applauded it [laughs]. And by the time we were considering him to replace Chuck, he was already on to something else [laughs].
On singing with FNM this year.
“I’m a terrible self-promoter, but I can really sing now. I manage to stay in tune 99% of the time now…90%. The shows went off without a hitch, I didn’t fuck up and I acted totally professional. That’s when I really couldn’t afford to blow it. Ever since I got fired [from Faith No More], I’ve had this recurring nightmare. I’m onstage with them and I forget all the lyrics, I can’t open my mouth and I go hide behind a speaker. Billy [Gould, bass] looks at me all disappointed and I’ve been having that dream for 20 years. It stopped when they first invited me to play again.
“Billy was working his ass off and Mike [Bordin, drums] collapsed on the floor right after the first show. I’ve seen them play a bunch with Mike Patton and it’s a way more open, dressy, spacious thing, but this show was just punk rock. It was brutal and I made it through.”
On We Care A Lot.
“I think ‘We Care a Lot’ is pretty damn perfect. It’s the first album I ever professionally sang on and I’m still proud of it. I might have slipped out of tune a little bit, but I don’t care anymore. I don’t give a fuck. I’m not a fuckin’ singer, I’m a piano player who gets paid for singing. I’ve seen millionaires fuck up and go out of tune on stage and on TV, so whatever. I think ‘We Care a Lot’ is still amazing, music-wise. Some of the songs could’ve come out today.”
- FNM 4 Ever
On 2013 shows in in Chile.
"I remember fondly those shows, there were beautiful people, are very, very enthusiastic, really fun and with very tight band shows. A beautiful country with beautiful people, delicious food. I remember very rich ate meat and much Shushi. They were all very cool. It was also a pleasure to play with Billy (Gould) again. I love his band The Talking Book. Every night Billy joined us to play a song of Faith No More ... so it was very entertaining, I'm anxious to get back !!!!!!! "
Imperial Teen played their first show in three years at The Bottom Of The Hill in San Francisco on October 8th.
Mike Patton in Krakow with Jerome Noetinger and Anna Zaradny.