Review Summary: "Making this record was like taking a very satisfying shit"- Mike Patton
When I was 14 years old, an opportunity arose. Back then (when people still bought cds), I got an offer from BMG Music in the mail. With this offer came a book of listings that showed the cheaper cds that usually went for a whopping one dollar, or less. I had already been a huge Faith No More fan, and King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime
was the only album I didn’t have by them. I saw that the cd was for 99 cents, and purchased it immediately. I tried to get this album before, but oddly enough, the record stores I went to just did not carry it. From reading the scathing reviews, my hopes weren’t high. People called this a “sell-out record”, and “weak”. Granted, FNM had broken up about a year and a half before I got into them, so my curiosity was still huge. I couldn’t wait for that day to come. It felt like years before the cd was delivered. Alas, a package arrived in the mail, and I remember looking at the dog on the cover thinking to myself “oh boy, its finally here”.
I couldn’t stop playing it. It was the freshest thing I had ever heard, and I look back at the Summer of 2000 with that cd in mind. I can recall clearly setting up my cd player outside while going swimming with my best friend, and two cute girls that lived around the way. I remember one of the girls diving into the pool as “Star AD” played loud and proud. I took the album everywhere with me, and my friends started to get concerned. A couple of years later, I got into different music, and I sadly forgot about Faith No More. Come 2006, and I’m a fresh-faced college student, and madly in love. This girl I was into was perfect. I saw wedding bells in my future, and everything just seemed right. However, she went on to date somebody else, and I fell into a deep depression that truly took over me. For some odd reason, I always referred to Faith No More as my “happy music”, and one faithful night while I was down and out, I put them on since it had been so long. Little did I know then that I would completely fall in love with the band again. It lit a fire under my ass, and I felt like that little teenager again swimming with the girls.
Here I was listening to them again as if I had just heard them for the first time. Even the girl that broke my heart took a liking to the band, and that made me feel so mushy and real. It felt good knowing that the girl that destroyed me had no idea that this was the music that made me feel better after the heartbreak she put me through. It’s a beautiful thing when you go back as an older person and listen to your favorite music when you were a child, and find it even better as an adult. Faith No More are an uber-talented band, and it’s a shame they never got their due. But at the same time, it fits. Its cool knowing that FNM has a mystique surrounding them, and that only the cool kids are up on their music.
So what makes this album so damn dear to me? For starters, it’s a tour de force of sounds, and the record perfectly sums up what the band is capable of. Faith No More show off all of their cards here, and with fashion. This record feels like a child with severe ADD. There is no true sound on this album, and every song is drastically different than the next. Some people would say that the record is inconsistent, and un-focused. But then again, since when has FNM truly been focused on one sound? Perhaps this is why I love the record so much. Its got something for all tastes, and I guarantee you that you will find something on this album that’s good to your ear hole.
Things start off with a quick pace as “Get Out” blasts through your speakers. The track is frantic, short, and to the point. Who would have thought the addition of Trey Spruence would alter the FNM sound so much? “Ricochet” follows with a mid-tempo groove that sounds much better live than on record. Mike Patton delivers a passionate performance, but not nearly as passionate as “Evidence”, a sexy little tune that has been given a life of its own. Evidence is the first stand-out of many on this album, much like “The Gentle Art of Making Enemies”, a straight-forward metal song that goes for the throat. With great lyrics, and especially great drumming by Mike Bordin, the track truly shines.
Things get a bit odd with “Star AD”, a truly original song that needs to be heard to be believed. It’s a perfect summer song, and one I will forever link to the best of times in my life. “Cuckoo for Caca” to this day still divides listeners. Some call it filler, some feel it is the best metal song FNM ever composed. With its insane tempo, Bordin’s insane drums, and Billy Gould’s insane bass, the song is the dirtiest thing they ever put to tape. A highly recommended song for those bad days, it surely will leave a lasting impression. “Caralho Voador” is another smooth little tune about a man driving his car with his finger in his nose. Not the best thing the band has released, but essential to the album’s eclectic nature.
“Ugly in the Morning” feels like another filler track, but “Digging the Grave” stands out as the first single. Probably the most straight-forward song FNM have ever done, it has become a live favorite, and continues to be a staple among Faith No More elitists. FNM try their hand at country with “Take This Bottle”, and it works. A simple 4/4 song, it utilizes the atmosphere and the pretty background vocals to make it an underrated classic. However, nothing comes close to the title track.
The title track could be the best Faith No More song ever. A hauntingly beautiful track, KFAD moves along at such a pretty flow, and Roddy Bottum’s keyboards add such a lush layer to make it the finest song on the album. I honestly can’t even say enough about this song, as it is just that good. “What A Day” is another little metal tune with a stand-out performance by Bill Gould, and it has one of the best grooves by the band ever. “The Last to Know” carries an absolutely fantastic performance by Mike Patton, and I cant help but think to myself how much of a biter Brandon Boyd is with this song. This track is “Mike Patton Clean Vocals 101”, and it’s a personal favorite of mine by him. Speaking of favorites, “Just A Man” ends the album with a bang. With its choir-inspired vocals, and uplifting composition, it’s a perfect way to end the chaos within.
Critically panned upon it’s release, King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime
has developed a cult following. People have finally grown to appreciate this record for what it is, and it makes me happy to know the album is finally getting it’s due amongst fans and critics alike. Sure, it may not be as brilliant as Angel Dust
, but it stands as the perfect follow-up. What constitutes an album of being a 5? For me, it’s the memories. The childhood memories of smoking cigarettes out back with friends. The memories of skipping school to play Playstation. The memories of hanging out with girls for the first time. This album carries these things for me, and I will forever love this record. However, the fact that the album has sounded even better through time makes it truly special. These things will never fade to me, and this album will never grow old like me. Truly special, for one soul at least.