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Faith No More is an Alternative Metal band formed in San Fransisco, US in 1981 by bassist Billy Gould, keyboardist Wade Worthington, vocalist Mike Morris and drummer Mike Bordin. A year later, Wade Worthington was replaced by keyboardist Roddy Bottum and Mike Morris was ousted. After going through a series of singers which included Courtney Love, the band was joined by Chuck Mosley in 1983. The same year, Jim Martin was recruited to replace guitarist Mark Bowen. After a long, long time spent changing the lineup before, eventually, Chuck Mosley was replaced by Mike Patton, and the band found massive success with their third album, The Real Thing, which contains their best-known song "Epic".
The band is best known for combining elements of metal, funk, Progressive Rock, Hip-hop, Hardcore Punk, and jazz, among many others, among many, many, many others... seriously..., and is considered one of the most influential rock bands of modern times, "Epic" having massively influenced the Nu-metal genre
They broke up in 1998 but reformed, triumphantly, in 2009.
So far they have made the following albums:
- We Care a Lot (1985)
- Introduce Yourself (1987)
- The Real Thing (1989)
- Angel Dust (1992)
- King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime (1995)
- Album of the Year (1997)
The band has examples of the following tropes:
- Alternative Metal: One of the founders of the genre.
- Black Sheep Hit: "Epic".
- Cover Version: "Easy" by the Commodores, "War Pigs" by Black Sabbath, the Midnight Cowboy theme and "Poker Face" by Lady Gaga.
- Creator Backlash: If Allmusic is to be believed, the band got such a large fandom of metalheads due to their Black Sabbath cover that they eventually dropped it from their live sets entirely.
- Epic Rocking: "The Real Thing", "Jizzlobber", "Zombie Eaters", "King for a Day", their cover of "War Pigs".
- Yet, ironically, "Epic" is less than five minutes long.
- Gratuitous Foreign Language: "Caralho Voador", from King for a Day... Fool for a Lifetime, has a verse in Portuguese (as well as the title).
- And, for bonus points, it's styled after Bossa Nova.
- There's also the non-album track "Das Shutzenfest", which is entirely in German... Apparently it's about meeting a girl at a festival held by a rifle club, then making love with her in a pig trough.
- Greatest Hits Album: "The Very Best Definitive Ultimate Greatest Hits Collection", "This Is It: The Best of Faith No More", and a couple of other compilation albums that may or may not be greatest hits albums.
- Lyrical Dissonance: "Land of Sunshine", which probably has some rather well-hidden subtexts, but seems to be about being happy (and not by using drugs), and is set to a dark and metally background with snarly vocals.
- Man of a Thousand Voices: Mike Patton is a musical example, with wildly varying voice pitches.
- Metal Scream: With Mike Patton, in a few songs.
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Veers between 6 and 7.
- Neoclassical Punk Zydeco Rockabilly: What exactly ARE Faith No More? For simplicity's sake you could just say "a rock band", though it's a gross understatement.
- Non-Appearing Title: "Epic". Also, "Stripsearch", "Naked In Front Of The Computer", "Zombie Eaters", "Pristina"...
- Non-Indicative Name: The title of Album of the Year is a sarcastic contrast to the band's unhappiness with the final result - the artwork using images of Tomás Masaryk's funeral was selected to represent their imminent breakup.
- One-Hit Wonder: Technically speaking, "Epic" is their only big hit. Certainly their only song a non-fan would be likely to have ever heard.
- Rap Rock / Rap Metal: Early pioneer of this.
- Sampling: In a few songs, most of them on Angel Dust.
- Shaped Like Itself: "What. Is. It?" "It's IT!"
- Signature Song: "Epic," "Midlife Crisis"
- Spelling Song: "Be Aggressive". With cheerleaders, and everything!
- Surreal Music Video: "Epic" - it involves the band performing on a soundstage while soaked by a storm, ominous clouse-ups of Patton, a flopping fish (which they jokingly claimed to have stolen from Bjork) and Bottum's piano exploding at the end, and "We Care A Lot" features constant flashes to a baby. Which is never explained.
- What Happened To The Fish? It was returned alive to its aquarium.
- Word Salad Lyrics: A fair part of their discography; "Epic" springs to mind as a specific example. (Although you will hear all sorts of contradictory accounts of what Mike Patton allegedy said the lyrics mean, these are invariably urban legends.)
- Mike has mentioned before that he feels his lyrics are his weakest skill in composition.
- ↑ "Flying Dick", as in "penis"