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Fantômas - Suspended Animation CD (album) cover





3.64 | 93 ratings

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4 stars Fantomas, like any group bearing Mike Patton's name, is a complex, avant-garde beast that combines RIO, jazz, metal, and hands down the most unique vocals on the planet into a disturbing yet strangely beautiful whole. Suspended Animation, Fantomas' final album, is almost as good as their debut, and it is much more manageable than their last album, the epic Delerium Cordia. Like the debut, we get thirty tracks, this time one for each day. The theme this time seems to be a take on cartoon music. Think of it as WB composer Carl Stalling suddenly joining Mr. Bungle with a little help from Slayer's drum legend Dave Lombardo.

The music on this album bludgeons you with subtlety. Various styles, motifs, riffs, samples, vocals, percussion, and effects are thrown together in a loud and chaotic manner tat makes Devin Townsend look downright mainstream by comparison. Patton doesn't so much sing as use his vocal cords to pound out as many effects as the musicians, but then that always was his style. Trevor Dunn's bass and Osbourne's guitar weave together to make dissonant riffs and breaks that rarely last more than a few seconds. Lomardo really ties the group together; his blastbeats and insane fills are, for once, accessible when you compare them to the rest of the arrangements. His considerable skill manages to be as avant garde as the rest of the band, yet it also keeps them from leaving the planet altogether.

SA is Fantomas' second best set after their stunning debut, and it nearly equals that triumph. Still, those who have yet to be initiated to the world of Mike Patton would do well to start with Faith No More, then Mr Bungle's California and Fantomas' Director's Cut before trying this out.

Grade: B+

1800iareyay | 4/5 |


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