Mike Patton has spoken to TheMusicComAu in the band’s 716th Sol Invictus promotional interview, in an interview which has just been published but which obviously took place when the band were in Australia earlier this year.
Mike again speaks about he became involved in working on the new music that became Sol Invictus:
“Patton’s description of the band as a mob (albeit with a mafia mastermind) is romantic but unsurprising. It must have been tempting to listen to the chorus of press, fans and the rest calling for a return all this time. “No, that had zero influence,” he says with a smile. “We didn’t really have a master plan, meaning, ‘Hey, we’ve gotta make another record and it’s gotta sound like this.’ No. Basically Bill [Gould, bass] wrote a set of music and it wasn’t like, there weren’t guns pointed at anyone’s head, I heard what he was doing and it was just kinda great, you know? Look at it as, I don’t know, a collection of music. To me, any project I do, I look at it in a vacuum and then see what does it need? What do I have in my toolbox? What can I do to add to it?” This time around Patton and the band are looking forward to being a bit more selective in their approach to making an album. “It’s experience. And you know, some would call that senility or old age, but I think it’s good. You don’t have to do everything; it’s nice to be in a position where you can say no. It is really empowering. And we just really don’t have the energy to do it anymore. And you know, I know we’ve been away for 20 years or whatever, and what makes it exciting is being able to say, ‘Hey, we’re going to do this, and then maybe not this.””
And then there is this answer as to why he prefers not interpreting the music, which is sure to arouse interest beyond just the music:
“I mean, talking is nice because it gives you perspective. But also, it’s more like we’re curious to hear [what the reaction is beyond us]. Especially with a newborn like what we have in this album, I mean, I’ve played this record for like my wife and a couple of close friends, and that’s it. People I trust have heard it, so it’s interesting to kind of hear other people’s opinion too.”
And this is a wonderful quote too:
“I don’t know, maybe some bands need that [a frontman to stand out], but I don’t feel that that’s my place, at least not in the kind of music I’ve been making. Very rarely do I need to be that guy,” he laughs. “I don’t feel I need to provide that, whatever, fill that role. With these guys, yeah, to be honest the music, I really liked it so much that I just wanted to not get in the way… It’s another instrument, it just so happens that it comes out of my mouth. It’s not more or less important than a guy hitting a piece of cow skin or a guy playing a string.”