Sol Invictus reviews

/Sol Invictus reviews
1905, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEWS: Paste, Punknews and Glide all give Faith No More panegyrical reviews

May 19th, 2015|Faith No More, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

As you can see, I’m running out of adjectives to describe positive reviews but here come three more from pretty big hitters.

Paste 

Paste award Sol Invictus 8.3/10 and give one of those reviews which has you scratching your head wondering where the lost points went to. In fact, the pretty much claim that the album is better than Angel Dust or KFAD or anything else from the FNM oeuvre. I’ll paste Paste here:

“In fact, as improbable as it may have somehow seemed—given the confounding reunion efforts of other previously dormant artists in the last decade—Faith No More appears to have not only written a collection of songs that stand up to the lofty heights they set for themselves from past releases, in some ways they have exceeded them. Herein you find the tatters of The Real Thing, Angel Dust, and Album of the Year, each tong-tossed and flipped to accommodate the band’s infamous artistic daring.”

And this is great phrasing:

“They sound like they’re 22 years old again, or at least they’re convincingly channeling the spirit of their 22-year-old selves. Forget age; this is just a killer avant-metal maelstrom.”

PunkNews

PunkNews award 4.5/5 stars and also make the bold claim that Sol Invictus is as good as anything they have done. They conclude:

“Faith No More is in fact back from the dead, and their time in the grave seems to have done them some good. Sol Invictus was worth the wait. It’s an artistic triumph on par with the best of their ’90s stuff. The faithful will savor every note of these ten new songs. In an era of constant, pointless reunions, here’s one that’s finally worth the hype. Faith No More really do seem to be unconquered suns. They make music on their own terms, take it or leave it. You should definitely take it. “

Glide magazine

Glide also make lofty claims in their conclusion as they dish out a 9/10 score:

“Standing with “Superhero” as a new Faith No More classic is the penultimate “Matador.” Once again, the interplay of piano and guitar drive the track forward towards progressive greatness. The intensity builds and builds, creating a haunting whirlwind that sticks with you long after the album is over.

Coming in at just under 40 minutes, Sol Invictus might feel like sparse offering, but Faith No More makes full use of their—and your—time, pulling no punches and delivering their best album since 1992’s Angel Dust. They’re clearly aware of the skepticism surrounding reunions and do their best to dispel these trepidations one track at a time, winning over even the most jaded and cynical music fans among us.

 

 

1905, 2015

REVIEW: Rolling Stone gives Sol Invictus 3.5/5 review; AP gives rave review

May 19th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

Rolling Stone has given Faith No More’s Sol Invictus a short and largely positive review under the reductive and slightly patronizing headline of “Weird-metal guys show they’re still nutty after all these years”.

They say:

“Sol Invictus, the band’s first record since 1997’s underrated Album of the Year, offers newer, better versions of Faith No More’s formula: spaghetti-Western guitars (“Cone of Shame”), proggy keyboard drama (“Matador”) and tons of vocal contortions from lead singer Mike Patton (“Rise of the Fall”). With the exception of one tune seemingly about Patton’s breakfast (“Sunny Side Up”), it’s as much a triumphant victory lap as it’s a comeback record.”

AP review

Meanwhile, leading US news wire the Associated Press has given the record a completely glowing review. Under the headline of “Faith No More Screams Back to Life”, they say:

“As ever, the band’s not-so-secret weapon is frontman Mike Patton, whose voice is capable of flipping from touching falsetto to larynx-ripping raw screams within a single line.

In the stunning “Cone of Shame,” Patton begins the track crooning over a spaghetti Western-influenced guitar line before morphing into a Tom Waits-ian, smoke-addled narrator, shape-shifting, finally, into a demonic presence — multitracking a series of guttural wails as the song reaches its crushing conclusion.

“Sol Invictus” shimmers to a glorious, harmonic close with the lines: “Back from the dead/ I can see the end — welcome home my friend” — and it’s good to have them back.”

1905, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEWS: 7/10 from PopMatters and more reviews

May 19th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

Pop Matters is the latest major site to give Faith No More Sol Invictus a largely positive review.

Pop Matters

They give 7/10 and make a good point on how the two singles work better as part of the album

“Superhero” shows up as the second track, coming on the heels of the low-key, portentous “Sol Invictus”. The latter, with lyrics about a crisis of faith, beautiful warm minor-key piano chords, and quietly pounding drums, sounds like it’s building up to something. In this case, it’s building up to “Superhero”, which launches full throttle and fades into the relaxed “Sunny Side Up”, a song with one of the record’s catchiest choruses. It’s a chorus that the band and Patton entertainingly destroy by pushing it into a shouted, hard-edged refrain before backing off again. Both “Sunny Side Up” and “Sol Invictus” come in under the three-minute mark, showing that the band has the savvy to build a song around a simple musical idea and not ruin it by stretching it too far.”

And the review concludes:

“Sol Invictus probably isn’t going to top Angel Dust or The Real Thing on most fans’ lists of favorite Faith No More albums, but it’s a step up from Album of the Year and holds its own with the strong but slightly bloated King for a Day, Fool for a Lifetime record. This is a solid comeback album that succeeds on its own terms. Namely, the whole band sounds engaged and enthusiastic to be working together, and that’s good for everyone that’s ever had a vested interest in Faith No More.”

Media Detour

The entertainment site gives a 4/5 review entitled “Faith Restored: Or, Return of the Maniacal Metal Monarchs” and state:

“This album fits right in with their existing work and seems like a natural progression that holds the essence of everything that makes the band so unique. It’s hard to imagine that Faith No More will ever release another work as big or important as 1992’s “Angel Dust,” but this collection of songs is definitely worthy of the band’s name and shows they still have the energy and skills to crank out some massive music.”

PopDose

PopDose also give Sol Invictus a generally positive review, stating:

“People don’t always like their favorite musicians to change. They like them to evolve over eons, to move slowly and gradually, almost encased in ice. Faith No More seems to inherently know this and they’ve done a brilliant job walking the line between reunion and reinvention on Sol Invictus. They’ve given loyal fans a record that sounds mostly like what they were doing in the 90s and they’ve given new listeners a reason to check them out. If this the start of something new or a flash in the pan, only time will tell. But Patton & company are sounding like they are in for the ride. Pay the man and buy your ticket.”

The 13th Floor

New Zealand site The 13th Floor also gives a good review.

“…The final product is quite stunning. In short, this is a great Faith No More record.

Things start with keyboard player Roddy Bottum’s stately piano on the title track, mixed with Mike Bordin’s martial drum beat. When Patton’s sinister voice comes in, singing, “I’m coming lord, I’m on my way,” you know you’re in for a wild ride.

And that what Faith No More, at their best, always delivers.”

 

 

 

 

1905, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: AV Club gives B+ review to Faith No More

May 19th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

Imfluential review site the AV Club has greeted Faith No More’s Sol Invictus with a largely positive review awarding a B+:

“In other words, it’s the rare, rare reunion album that’s shoulder to shoulder with what came before it, standing on the band’s solid catalog instead of trying and failing to start the climb anew. And though Sol Invictus is clearly colored by Patton’s artistic dalliances in the 18 years since Album Of The Year, it’s instantly recognizable as Faith No More, and at least in the neighborhood of some of the band’s best. That’s more than any reasonable fan could’ve hoped for.”

1905, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: Pitchfork gives 6/10 review

May 19th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|8 Comments

The hipster indie bible has spoken. Spoken in a barely legible way but spoken nonetheless:

There’s nothing necessarily wrong with a band repeating itself. But because Faith No More have such a long history, and their members are responsible for music in a staggering array of styles, it’s hard not to expect more, to wish that they might in some way top themselves, or at least change direction. Towards the end of “Cone of Shame”, Patton admits, “I’m only happy when I’m pissing you off.” Considering Faith No More’s history of confounding and confronting the listening public and the systems of order which influence it, such a statement could serve as the band’s motto. In that sense, maybe holding something back was the plan all along, and a future Faith No More record (one is said to be on the way) will have something more.”

The writer of the NPR review Adrien Begrand had his say on the review:

1805, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: Project Backstage gives best review yet

May 18th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|1 Comment

This is a corker of a review. It gets to the beating heart of the matter: Sol Invictus is here to bring rock music back From the Dead. Project Backstage hits the spot:

By and far – because of awesome melodies, great rock and roll sensibilities, sharp social commentary and honest emotion – Sol Invictusis the freshest-sounding record you’ll probably hear in 2015. By a damn sight. “

And:

“All of this is why Sol Invictus is so much more than whether or not Faith No More can hang nearly 20 years after they went away. Very much like Batman in The Dark Knight Returns, Sol Invictus might be the demarcation point of generations. If you’re okay with your AOR and your lite rock with nothing to say except for having some equal sign tattooed on its hand? Then the Coldplays and WALK THE MOON’s of the world are all yours. Shut up and dance with them.

However, if you actually have the wherewithal to go after something with some bite? If you don’t mind putting the work in to listen to a record with something honest and challenging to say? If you’re brave enough to take on an album with some real musical craftsmanship that doesn’t involve painting by numbers? If you’re brave enough to step outside the comfort zone that current American popular culture has become, then you’re ready for Faith No More’s Sol Invictus. Welcome to what’s outside the machine.”

Gold. Michael Melchor, we salute you.

1805, 2015

Links for a day…(vol. 175): Even more Sol Invictus reviews

May 18th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

Message from the band

On the day that’s in it – here’s Faith No More’s message for the fans:

The National review

United Arab Emirates leading English-language newspaper The National was full of praise for Sol Invictus:

“FNM can’t resist a jaunty parting missive, a nod to their occasional easy-listening influences, on the positively presentable From the Dead – quite probably with an arched-eyebrow acknowledgement to the band’s own Lazarus-style resurrection.

Those who loved FNM’s experimental tendencies circa King for a Day … have plenty to get their teeth into, then, but there’s enough tuneful nous to also pique the attention of the band’s earlier fans. All of which makes Sol Invictus a perilous high-wire balancing act that’s largely as successful as it is brave.”

Already Heard 5/5 review

UK-based alternative music website Already Heard has given a 5/5 review to Sol Invictus. He said:

“I could bang on all day about the rest of the songs on the album but there’s really no need. They sound like Faith No More and they’re great. From the operatic pomp of ‘Matador’ to the sneering tension of ‘Cone Of Shame’ the entire album is a resounding success. They idea of listing reference points is equally as redundant. Faith No More didn’t sound like anyone else when they entered the public conscious in the late 80’s and they still don’t like anyone else.

“‘Sol Invictus’ is the sound of a band enjoying each other’s creative company again and that’s allowed them to slip into a groove that’s welcomingly familiar and as stirringly brilliant as ever.”

Skip to the End 10/10 review

And another set of full marks from Skip to the End. Reviewer Ben states:

“The greatest compliment I can pay is that this obviously a Faith No More album. It doesn’t sound like they’re trying to emulate anyone else, they haven’t succumbed to modern trends, nor have they tried to curb their more experimental instincts. It’s as wild and varied a record as any they’ve ever done, and it deservedly stands alongside them. Flawless.”

The Monolith review

And The Monolith has given Sol Invictus an 85% score. They say:

“Sol Invictus is an undoubtedly mature collection of rock songs from one of the most collectively talented bands of modern history. There’s no denying that the decision to start writing music again was a slightly risky one, but it is a risk that has paid off handsomely. Sol Invictus is not a completely immediate album, but repeated listens reveal its quality, and in the context of the full forty minute duration, even “Motherfucker” makes sense in its place.

Long-term fans can breathe a sigh of relief, as Sol Invictus builds upon Faith No More’s illustrious heritage, rather than undermining it – and for newcomers to the Faith No More party, it will serve as an ideal introduction to the aural feast that awaits in their back catalogue. Welcome back, Faith No More, we’ve missed you.”

My Music My Concerts My Life

One of those rambling conversation-style reviews. On reviewer Steph hits the spot:

“Five fucking stars. This is an album I will go to again and again for decades to come. Every song was a hit for me. It’s complete badassery. Hands down. Would’ve loved a love song but hey, it’s FNM. They’re still bad asses but with a lot less hair. They’re way hotter in my opinion now. Way hotter. Favorite tracks, Cone Of Shame and Motherfucker. Hands down. Both earn spot on workout playlist. I don’t normally buy into the “album as a concept” thing but this works. It’s pretty much the perfect example of what a concept album should and could be. It goes full circle. The sun burns their face at the start, it’s Unconquered, but in the end it’s conquered. They couldn’t have done this better after an 18 year break. This should be the example of a comeback album. Period.”

1805, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: All Music Guide gives 4/5 in glowing Faith No More review

May 18th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|3 Comments

Review bible All Music Guide has given Faith No More’s Sol Invictus one of those rave reviews where you wonder where the missing star went. It is worth reading in full but here’s the best bits:

” While it’s more unified and less aggressively eccentric than Angel Dust, 2015’s Sol Invictus — Faith No More’s first album since regrouping for live work in 2011 — certainly captures the same “anything goes” spirit of their best album, and the results capture the feel of their finest work. “

And concludes:

” From the churning paranoia of “Separation Anxiety” and the distressed funk of “Sunny Side Up” to the blasting impact of “Cone of Shame” and the broadly theatrical closing number “From the Dead,” Patton’s range is every bit as broad as the band’s, and if he hasn’t guided Faith No More to a second masterpiece, Sol Invictus is their best and most compelling work since Angel Dust, and the rare reunion album that truly adds to the strength of the group’s legacy rather than diluting it.”

1805, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: Negative review from Slant magazine

May 18th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|5 Comments

Slant magazine has given Sol Invictus the most damning review we’ve read so far, awarding a Metacritic-average shattering 2.5/5. They reserve special opprobrium for Mike Patton:

On Sol Invictus, though, Patton doesn’t seem to trust his voice as much as he once did. With the exception of the tortured ballad “Matador” and the militaristic “Motherfucker,” he sticks primarily to his middle range and falls back too often on studio wizardry and a gruff affectation to cover his vocal limitations. Patton could still sing circles around pretty much any rock vocalist, but compared to his genre-mashing work as the Frank Zappa of the post-grunge age, leading the cheerfully experimental supergroups Lovage, Tomahawk, and Fantômas, his work here is oddly tepid.”

1805, 2015

SOL INVICTUS REVIEW: Poland’s Teraz Rock gives 4/5 review

May 18th, 2015|Faith No More, News, Sol Invictus reviews|0 Comments

Thanks to Daniel for sending us his translation of Teraz Rock magazine’s 4/5 review of Faith No More’s Sol Invictus. The review appeared alongside an interview in the May edition of the magazine.

“Faith No More’s return with new album is a big deal. Especially in Poland, where the group were always big. And it still is – Singles achieved higher positions in charts (based on digital buys) here than in USA! I think it gives us right to enjoy Sol Invictus in a special way…
Let’s begin with general overview – in comparison with the modern rock scene, this is a five-star Album. A unique combination of musical talents at their finest. Billy Gould strikes with bass groove resting on Mike Bordin’s iron drum foundations (Ozzy sure does have a taste for great musicians…). Roddy Bottum, unlike his keyboard colleagues from other bands, not only paints great backgrounds, but also commits sweet melodies. Mike Patton – no explanation needed… I’ll just remind you that he can sing operatic, as well as come up with wildest of vocal lines. And there’s also the guitarist. Who the fuck is the guitarist?! With all respect for Jon Hudson’s technical abilities, he doesn’t seem to be group’s creative engine… The one that Big Jim, or even Trey Spruance was. The band tried to reconnect with the first, but Jim preferred to stay with his pumpkins. As a result we have the Album of The Year line-up.

And here we go for the “sophisticated fan” point of view. Of course, AOTY filled our long years of emptiness, after FNM broke up. But it was more nostalgia rather than the album’s outstanding content. The album was created by a collapsing, mentally burned band. Musicians were dealing with drugs, record company, and each other… In fact, they didn’t work at the same time in the studio. Now  healthy, easygoing, experienced and recording at their own rehearsal place, the guys were able to create something stronger.

And the first studio offering showed up – Motherfucker. Provocative, showing that the band play by their own rules and don’t give a damn about any marketing principles. Build on an electronic theme with marching snare drum and Bottum’s recitation (It’s his composition) it actually reminds of Faith No More only in choruses, when Patton comes in. Absolutely unusual in the album’s representation. The second single is called Superhero. It’s constructed with more familiar elements – solid riff, deep bass pulse, the front man’s scansion/rapping, huge chorus, and keyboard hook, which recalls the legendary Epic… It turned out to be the greatest thing in this collection of songs. Matador, known from the live shows is also one that you can include in its classic compositions collection. There’s a lot happening: from the Chopinesque sounding piano intro to viscera demolishing bass line contrasted with Patton’s higher range vocal. To these two great songs I’d also add Sunny Side Up – One that has a chance to stand among the band’s greatest ballads Pulse-like rhythm (something familiar will come back in Rise of The Fall), the vocalist’s deep voice magically affecting women’s underwear areas, but mostly an amazing Chorus. Beautiful.

Though, it’s hard to place exclamation marks over the rest of the track list. Sure, there are stand outs, for example Separation Anxiety with its “sneaking” riff, promising verse and bridge, but in climax Mike prefers to just roar. The combination of acoustic and rocking tones in Black Friday are interesting, though the composition just loops on that idea. And also there are a few, unfortunately, tiresome things. e.g. the title track, with dolorous piano, another marching beat, some talking in verse and chorus, which sounds as if it was little unharmonious. Similar, with “Ra-ta-ta-ta-ta-tam” (Doesn’t Puffy have mental flashbacks from school snare-drum band?) is Cone Of Shame, rescued a little bit by its second, rocking half…
Independence is a great thing, without it there would not be a the Second Coming. But maybe some outside producer or record company advisers make sense? Maybe it would be helpful to say: “This number is better off, and this requires something else”? That’s why the LP gains only 4 stars.
Don’t get me wrong – Faith No More eats the competition for breakfast. But the appetite was a little bit bigger.

4/5

Bartek Koziczyński

 

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