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  • Writer's pictureFaith No More Followers

Kerrang! | October 21st 1989 | Issue 261


Edwards No 8, Birmingham

Phil Wilding

SCAT OPERA have seven inches of stage space. Five full minutes of soundcheck behind them, and around three people at the front who are only half interested.

Murder by numbers. Though, for a four piece from London who have risen from relative

obscurity - a handful of Marquee supports are about all they can call their own, profile-wise - alienation is nothing new.

The blond vocalist, who looks unerringly like a young Chuck Mosely, apologies for not being American and promptly launches

'Filo F**k' as if it's what the front row have wanted all their lives.

Scat Opera are as alarming as the first time I saw, say, the Toll, or experienced a Jane's Addiction sampler. They have no peripheries to their music, no recognisable tags. There's extremes and edges, but it's like attempting to make a punch count on the surface of an ocean.

Momentarily, I thought it could have been weaned off Faith themselves, but back to back there are no comparisons.

The bass funks, flattens and ravages, the guitar distorts and then slides while the drums just belt you in the mouth and tell you to shut up and listen. This one you've got to see for yourselves.

Faith No More have a sound that rings like an alarm bell and growls like an irate feline. The snare resembles an inverted steel bucket being struck.

For the rest of the evening I couldn't quite work out whether Mike Patton either knew or cared. There is something wrong with this man, very wrong.

While we stood stuck to the walls, smeared with perspiration, he complained of the cold, chuckled like an edgy schizophrenic, and twirled insanely. Then he picked the best Metal T-shirt in the audience - a Whitesnake design took it, Napalm Death were a close second - grabbed the recipient out of the audience, congratulated him and then tipped him back off. Let me assure you, he was having his own proverbial ball.

With the sturdy casting of 'Introduce Yourself' they

blighted past shadows and confounded half the capacity audience who seemed familiar with 'The Real Thing' and very little else. 'We Care A Lot' fell the same indecisive dusty route, while 'Falling To Pieces' was welcomed like the return of a favoured son.

So much so that the stage shifted dramatically, sloped threateningly and then shifted itself back into place. Patton chose the moment to examine the sweat on the ceiling and marvel publicly at the cool air breezing in through the grill above his head. There is something wrong etc.

The barrage strode on, hand in hand with the clumsy showers of ice cubes falling into the front, Patton contributed with his Evian bottle. 'From Out Of Nowhere' slid gracefully in, bludgeoning Jim cracking his ridiculously hairy head in and out of focus.

'Woodpeckers From Mars' landed like a small Steinway let go from 20 storeys up, which opened the way for 'War Pigs' to carve a foul smelling swathe through the human mist. Dark and odious, lingering like the darkest cancer bud. Black hearted and for ever.

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