Faith No More
Members: Roddy Bottum, Billy Gould, Mike Bordin, Mike Patton, Jon Hudson
Faith No More formed in 1982 out of the ashes of Faith No Man, a band formed and headed by Mike "The Man" Morris. Roddy Bottum, Mike Bordin, and Bill Gould left Faith No Man. They chose the name Faith No More at the suggestion of a friend (as "The Man" was no more). After cycling through a few guitarists, the members recruited Jim Martin. A number of singers were tried, including a six month stint by Courtney Love as confirmed by Mike Bordin in a 1997 interview. An airing on San Francisco Public Access TV has since surfaced of her performing with the band during their alleged "New Romantic phase". Chuck Mosely would later become the band's full time singer and appear on their first two records. A well known song from this era is "We Care a Lot", satirizing the prevalence of charity-related rock efforts such as Live Aid and "We Are the World".
The band gained a reputation for serious infighting and friction. In a notorious interview in 1987, Mosely claimed that Martin had hit him with a bottle, and there were frequent rumours of physical confrontations between band members. Indeed, in a short history of the band in one issue, the British music newspaper Melody Maker observed that the band's internal relationships had descended into "pathological hatred". Bordin in particular seemed to be very much the "whipping boy" of the band and the butt of numerous cruel pranks and practical jokes. It is doubtful that the band would have stayed together had they not been successful after their second album, Introduce Yourself.
Mosely was fired in 1988, and replaced with singer Mike Patton, who was singing with his old high school band Mr. Bungle. Patton dropped out of Humboldt State University to join Faith No More and went on to record the Grammy award nominated album The Real Thing.
The Real Thing (or TRT for short) has been described as "not quite early Brian Eno joins Led Zeppelin and Funkadelic." The video for "Epic", which featured slow motion footage of a fish flopping out of water, received extensive airplay on MTV in the summer of 1990, despite provoking anger from animal rights activists. That same year, Faith No More gave memorable performances at the 1990 MTV Video Music Awards (September 6) and on Saturday Night Live (December 1).
Faith No More displayed a distinctly experimental bent on their next album, Angel Dust. One critic writes that the album is "one of the more complex and simply confounding records ever released by a major label," and another writes that "'A Small Victory', which seems to run Madame Butterfly through Metallica and Nile Rodgers ? reveals a developing facility for combining unlikely elements into startlingly original concoctions." Angel Dust featured the singles "Midlife Crisis" and "A Small Victory", as well as a re-recording of the theme to the film Midnight Cowboy. Later pressings of the album also included their cover of the Commodores classic "Easy", which in some parts of the world became the band's biggest hit. Angel Dust, though not as successful as TRT in the U.S., sold 700,000 copies there, and did manage to outsell TRT in many other world charts. In Germany, for example, the record was certified Gold for sales of more than 270,000 copies. Along with heavy airplay of "Easy" and "Midlife Crisis", the album became a bit of a sleeper hit in the UK, South America, Europe and Australia.
After touring to support Angel Dust in the summer of 1992, longtime guitarist Jim Martin left the band during the early stages of recording their follow-up, King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime in 1995. He was replaced by Mr. Bungle guitarist Trey Spruance, who also left soon after; just before the band was to begin their world tour. Spruance was replaced by Dean Menta, the band's keyboard roadie.
KFAD/FFAL remains the band's most heavily criticised album, varying in styles and moods from heavy and slow to spasmodic and jazzy. KFAD/FFAL did however sell acceptably in the UK and Germany, and even went to #1 on the album charts in Australia. In the U.S. the album failed to get any sort of attraction or following, slipping out of the charts quickly. Sales (about 1.5 million) were below that of Angel Dust. The band accordingly decided to cut their world tour short by 4 months, deleted the singles "Gentle Art Of Making Enemies" and "Take This Bottle", and released a 7 x 7-inch box set of singles that included the B-sides and some interviews between the songs.
Album of the Year was released in 1997 and featured yet another new guitarist, Jon Hudson, who was a former roommate of Billy Gould. The album debuted much higher than expected in some countries, for example Germany (#2, later going gold) and Australia (#1 again, going platinum). In an additional 12 countries in Europe, it went either gold or platinum. In the U.S. the reaction was slow for the album; however, just as interest was picking up on their tours and album they called it a day. Singles "Ashes To Ashes" and "Last Cup Of Sorrow" had minimal success. Electro-tinged ballad "Stripsearch" was released as a single in various countries (excluding the U.S. and UK). "She Loves Me Not" was cancelled as a single which was a little indicator of their imminent break-up.
In April 1998, after 16 years as a band, Faith No More dissolved.
SIDE PROJECTS AND COLLABORATIONS
1991, the Faith No More song "Perfect Crime" appeared on the soundtrack for Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey. "Big" Jim Martin also appears briefly in the film.
The song "We Care A Lot" was used in the Pauly Shore and Stephen Baldwin movie Bio-Dome (1996) and the John Cusack/Minnie Driver comedy-thriller Grosse Pointe Blank, and has also been used as the theme for the Discovery Channel's show "Dirty Jobs".
Faith No More collaborated with the Boo-Yaa TRIBE for the song "Another Body Murdered" on the 1993 Judgment Night soundtrack.
The song Falling to Pieces can be heard in the movie Black Hawk Down.
In 1998, the Sparks album Plagiarism was released featuring two collaborations with Faith No More ("This Town Ain't Big Enough for the Both of Us" and "Something for the Girl with Everything").
Patton went on to collaborate with John Zorn, and has been active with several other groups, including Tomahawk and Fant?mas.
In 2002, Math-Metal band The Dillinger Escape Plan released an EP on Epitaph Records with Mike Patton; "Irony Is a Dead Scene".
Guitarist Jim Martin went on to collaborate with Anand Bhatt. He has made guest appearances including Antipop by Primus, as well as having released a solo album titled Milk and Blood (1996).
Keyboardist Roddy Bottum formed Imperial Teen.
Mike Bordin regularly performs as a member of Ozzy Osbourne's band, as well as Black Sabbath and he was also a member of Korn for a tour when their drummer David Silveria had a problem with his wrist.
Billy Gould is a member of Brujeria, as well as founder of Kool Arrow Records, and has also overseen the releases of various Faith No More compilations; he also played a few songs on Fear Factory's 2006 album Transgression.
1985 - We Care a Lot
1987 - Introduce Yourself
1989 - The Real Thing
1992 - Angel Dust
1995 - King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime
1997 - Album of the Year
1990 - Live at the Brixton Academy
1998 - Who Cares a Lot?
2003 - This Is It: The Best of Faith No More
2005 - Epic & Other Hits
2005 - The Platinum Collection
1987 - "We Care a Lot"
1988 - "Anne's Song"
1989 - "From Out Of Nowhere"
1990 - "Epic"
1990 - "Falling To Pieces"
1992 - "Midlife Crisis"
1992 - "A Small Victory"
1992 - "Everything's Ruined"
1993 - "Easy"
1994 - "Another Body Murdered" (with Boo-Yaa TRIBE)
1995 - "Digging the Grave",
1995 - "Ricochet",
1997 - "Ashes To Ashes",
1997 - "Last Cup Of Sorrow"
1997 - "Stripsearch"
1998 - "I Started a Joke"