Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography




From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Fantômas Suspended Animation album cover
3.65 | 103 ratings | 31 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 2005

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. 04/01/05 April Fool's Day (0:35)
2. 04/02/05 International Children's Book Day (USA) Battle Of The Flowers (France) National Peanut Butter And Jelly Day (USA) (2:10)
3. 04/03/05 Megalisia (Roman) Don't Go To Work Unless It's Fun Day (USA) (1:46)
4. 04/04/05 Er Tong Jie Children's Day (Taiwan) A Drop Of Water Is A Grain Of Gold Day (Turkmenistan) (1:33)
5. 04/05/05 Festival Of The Sweeping Of The Tombs (China) (0:34)
6. 04/06/05 Sorry Charlie Day (USA) Plan Your Epitaph Day (USA) (2:25)
7. 04/07/05 Motherhood And Beauty Day (Armenia) No Housework Day (USA) (1:09)
8. 04/08/05 Moharram (India) Hana Matsuri Flower Festival (Japan) (1:09)
9. 04/09/05 Day Of The Amazon Goddess (Brazil) (1:17)
10. 04/10/05 Soul Sunday (Haitian Vodou) Feast Of The Rivers And Seas (Egypt, Sumerian) (2:20)
11. 04/11/05 Eight Track Tape Day (USA) (2:17)
12. 04/12/05 Cosmonauts Day (Russia) Walk On Your Wild Side Day (USA) Feast Of The Blajini (Romania) (1:16)
13. 04/13/05 Blame Somebody Else Day (USA) Vaisakhi Solar Year (Hindu) (1:31)
14. 04/14/05 Youth Day (Angola) International Moment Of Laughter Day (USA) (2:21)
15. 04/15/05 That Sucks' Day (USA) Day Of The Sun (North Korea) (0:40)
16. 04/16/05 Rekindle Your Romantic Self Day (USA) (0:49)
17. 04/17/05 National Cheeseball Day (USA) Blah Blah Blah Day (USA) (0:46)
18. 04/18/05 Week Of The Young Child (USA) Depression Day -Anime Calendar (Japan) (0:47)
19. 04/19/05 Binding Tuesday (UK) Garlic Day (USA) (0:40)
20. 04/20/05 Taurus The Bull (Astrological Calendar) National Puppetry Day (USA) (1:49)
21. 04/21/05 Kindergarten Day (Germany) Prophet's Birthday (Islamic) (1:40)
22. 04/22/05 Feast Of Ishtar (Babylonian) Girl Scout Leader Day (USA) (2:05)
23. 04/23/05 Çocuk Bayrami (Turkey) Lover's Day (USA) Festival Of The Green Man (Witches Calendar) (0:59)
24. 04/24/05 National Karaoke Week (USA) Children's Day (Iceland) (1:49)
25. 04/25/05 Cuckoo Day (UK) National Playground Safety Week (USA) (0:31)
26. 04/26/05 Flower Parade (Netherlands) Richter Scale Day (USA) (1:32)
27. 04/27/05 National Scoop The Poop Day (USA) (1:13)
28. 04/28/05 Floralia (Romania) (1:31)
29. 04/29/05 Casse Canarie (Haitian Vodou) (1:29)
30. 04/30/05 National Honesty Day (USA) Beltane (Celtic) Walpurgisnacht (Germany) (3:09)

Total time 43:52

Line-up / Musicians

- Mike Patton / vocals, keyboards (?), composer, arranger & producer
- Buzz Osborne / guitar
- Trevor Dunn / bass
- Dave Lombardo / drums

Releases information

Concept album that incorporates a dual theme of cartoon sounds/music as well as paying tribute to (dubious) holidays throughout the month of April.

Artwork: Yoshitomo Nara

CD Ipecac Recordings - IPC 65 (2005, US)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
Edit this entry

Buy FANTÔMAS Suspended Animation Music

FANTÔMAS Suspended Animation ratings distribution

(103 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(35%)
Good, but non-essential (20%)
Collectors/fans only (9%)
Poor. Only for completionists (12%)

FANTÔMAS Suspended Animation reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by MikeEnRegalia
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Very nicely done. I give their debut album five stars, because it is really unique and wasn't done before, they really "added to the substance of the universe". This record is a combination of all their previous records, and also quite unique.

You get lots of samples, incoherent riffs, vocal acrobatics and occasional blastbeats ... it's not really prog in a Yes sense, but in a King Crimson meets Slayer meets Mr. Bungle sense. If you're new to Fantomas, I recommend you begin with Director's Cut and then continue with this record or their debut.

Review by frenchie
4 stars This album is a lot more convincing than the previous work that consists of a 74 minute experimental piece of what it is like to be operated on whilst completely concious.

This album works better as it is less of a strain to listen to, although this does have to be played fully from start to end in order for it to sound best (listening to random individual tracks won't really do anything for you). This is a very interesting experiment in music as they cram in as many different types of music, speeds, instruments and effects into very short burst song's (almost like grindcore meets avante garde!).

Fantomas have totally obliterated any froms of traditionally structured songwriting in order to provide a weird mess of sound. Luckily it pays off, the album is gripping and always keeps your ears peeled. This album is completely unpredictable and pulls out almost all the tricks in the book (albeit, most are brief).

Some people may find this piece of art mindblowing and a struggle to appreciate or "get" as it is quite literally an onslaught of all sorts of crazy weird sounds, usually wrapped up with bullet fast riff breaks. Lots of strange effects in sound and vocal. It really is a weird piece of music. Definetly a hit or miss album but hopefully people who are into their experimental, avante garde and downright mental music will see this as one of the best of the lot.

I think this album has ties to Captain Beefheart's work, especially the album "Trout Mask Replica", as it uses a similar patten of short burst songs, all with crazy different themes, radical changes in sound, strange effects and complete weirdness. This album is quite highly recommended, though it also recommended that you treat this as something completely different to anything else you have ever heard.

Review by Cygnus X-2
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Words cannot describe what I thought after listening to this album. It certainly is... wel... different. You'll find no epic suites, no thoughful lyrics, no soft acoustic passages, you'll only find chaos and madness. The first time I heard it, I thought to myself, "What the hell did I just listen to?" It takes time for an album to grow, and this one did.

Now, for the music. This album sounds like it could have been the alternate soundtrack to Looney Tunes (an excerpt is featured in the final track). Most tracks are about 1 minute in length, and feature either bizarre sound effects, extreme metal guitar, or bizarre vocals from Mike Patton. The variety in such sounds is really nice, too. This album truly is not for the faint of heart. My favorite track is the final one, mainly for the Looney Tunes ending.

What they were thinking when they made this, I do not know. But all I can say is, don't listen to this if you are the faint of heart, or are not comfortable listening to off the wall music. I, for one, enjoyed the album to some extent. 3/5.

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Animated, Certainly...

1 word: AWESOME!!!

So why not 5 stars?

This isn't really a masterpiece of Prog Rock, but is a stunning step in the right direction. The overwhelming root is in the metal genre, but this is not your father's metal.

I do not think that it was entirely intended, but the album comes across as a masterpiece of avante-garde music, utilising many concepts put forward by the ground- breaking composers of the early twentieth century, including Copland, Cage and Varese. Zappa fans will recognise some of the techniques, especially in the comic effects.

However, my feeling is that the genuine art in this album has been arrived at from a non-academic stream-of-consciousness perspective, and just lacks that certain something that lends intention, structure and real drama to the music.

Non-metal fans would still be advised to check this out, as it is one of the most exciting albums I've heard in the metal genre for many years - but if you find the entire thrash metal genre on the noisy side, then this might still lack appeal, as it does get very noisy - which is good...

As has been noted, this album benefits from a continual listen - it is not an album to just dip into at random. The track titles become clear as you listen - each one is a condensed representation of "days in the life" (actually the 30 days of April), which range from the utterly manic, to the comic, to rare moments of almost soulful reflection - but mostly utterly manic.

Lombardo's drums really stand out as the lynchpin of this music, although the term "drummer" is inadequate, and "percussionist" far more accurate - but there's no overlooking the contributions of everyone else - particularly the engineer and sampler operator... "Buzz" lives up to the nickname, providing a snarling buzz that constantly seems to react to the ever-shifting emotions of each "day", and Patton's vocals take a Thom Yorke approach, in that they are rarely to the foreground but part of the overall texture. Trevor Dunn underpins everything very nicely - I'd quite like to have heard a little more contribution to help snatch that extra star, but what he does put in is precise enough.

Think Syd Barrett meeting Frank Zappa and teaming up with Slayer, then stir in a generous helping of music from your favourite cartoons and you really haven't even got close to describing the conglomeration of ever-changing sound here. This album never loses the listener's attention, as it becomes almost imperative to discover what is around the corner.

Recommended purchase to all lovers of prog rock - but with a Government Health Warning to anyone not keen on intense metal. I would, however add a "Gogeddit!!!" to any fan of modern day Sci-Fi films and cartoons... especially Bugs Bunny ;0)

Review by TheProgtologist
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars An about face from the spookshow ambience of their last offering Delerium Cordia, this album finds the band getting back to their slice 'n dice roots. The more visceral approach is refreshing, but Fantomas haven't exactly re-invented their wheel. As one might expect, speed, brutality and Morricone-esque flourishes form the album's basic building blocks. Guttural guitars and titanic drums claw, tear and pummel, while Patton's rhythmic growls and eerie melodies provide texture and occasional direction. It's pretty much business as usual, but there does seem to be greater attention paid to detail this time around.

It shouldn't come as too much as a surprise that Suspended Animation is inspired by cartoon music, particularly the work of Warner Brothers court composer Carl Stalling. Patton has been beating this horse since the early days of Bungle, perhaps at the behest of his overlord John Zorn. Nevertheless, the concept still works, mostly because guitarist Buzz Osbourne of the Melvins tears into the material like a deranged psychotic.Slayer's Dave Lombardo furiously bashes away at his kit, showing surprising nuance when the situation demands it. Jazz mutant Trevor Dunn fills out whatever spaces are left with mostly subsonic bass splats. Grotesque noir passages and curdled screams tie the room together, while goofy samples from antiquated animated features pop up intermittently.

It's pointless to mention any of the 30 tracks specifically, as the record comprises the days of the weeks in the month of April. It's better just to strap in and enjoy the ride.Suspended Animation is an exhilarating,lunatic rollercoaster ride of an album.4 stars and highly recommended for fans of the twisted,unusual and avant- garde side of music.

Review by AtLossForWords
2 stars It's so original, I may be missing the point.

I went to Borders looking for numerous artists and when all was said and done, I walked away with Fantomas' Suspended Animation. I was excited to get the album after reading many good reviews, but when I listened to the album, I fail to see the acclaimed greatness. I don't know if it's so original I'm missing, the point or it really isn't that great. Here's how I break it down.

The overall musicality certainly shows creativity, but it doesn't show knowledge of how to compose a song. The album never really gets to a point where it "develops". It seems like this album is forty-five minutes of an intros and outros to great tunes.

The guitar playing shows a lot of versitility. Once again, I must say it doesn't sound developed. Buzz just never kicks into the groove. The effects are creative, the tones are musical, but the playing never kicks into musical form.

The vocals from Mike Patton never seems to really show off his singing talents. Much like the guitars, it's very effects driven and doesn't seem to establish any kind of flow or purpose to the album.

The bass playing is one of the better parts of the album. Out of all the musical skill on the album, the bass seems to be in more of a groove than the rest of the band.

The drums are much the same way as the bass. The drums and bass seem to groove a little better throughout the album. I can't say I hear any phoenomenal drumming, but when the groove is more or less established, the drums are a pleasant experience.

The production is excellent. The effects are clear and quality. The effects are quite creative and give the album a unqiue sound. I think their are a few too many of them though. It would be much better to see the effects take a back seat to groove in the music. Everything sounds great, but it's hard to distinguish where the serious musical composition begins and ends.

It's not a terrible album, but I certainly don't think this album deserves the praise it recieves.

Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Fantomas, this is a very strange band, they have their unique style and sound, thats why for the most of all of us is quite difficult to describe their albums.

Suspended Animation is another weird and loony thing, is great, because all the structure is awesome, the musicianship is great all of them make excellent music, but its very weird, and of course this isnt everybody`s cup of tea, because it could be annoying, strange and difficult to enjoy for some people, one of the main points its that this album is very original, i mean, one bad example would be Wobbler Hinterland, it is a great album, but it doesnt have anything new to show us, in this case Fantomas made a new album , new music, new sound, unique, some weird strange sound. An album with 30 songs, one song per day. and each song has their feel, i dont know what they really tried to show us, but well, talking about the album, i think is good, but only good, because when i listen to it, i enjoy it, but sometimes it makes me laguh, for example, it has lullabies, also a traditional mexican song in the penultimate song, when it looks all quiet , suddenly, Mike Patton screams, and it is the beauty of this album, all that little things, in some ways i think its funny, in some ways i think its only noise, but it isnt, all are created to have a different point of view, but well , to be honest i think the album is maybe repetitive, because i listen to the same sqeuency, i mean, silence, suddenly, scream and fast music, fast drums, then again, silence, next some strange sounds like a cartoon sound or something, and then again scream and fast drums. Maybe i could compare it to some Zappa sounds, and some VdGG werd passages, but this is not the point.

I will say that it is a good album, it really is, but IMO i can give it only 3 stars, many the most of us already know this album, bu i dont think it could be essential ,maybe a good addition, but not an excellent addition.

Review by Bj-1
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Liked their debut? Then their new album, "Suspended Animation" is not to be missed! An ecletic compilation with compositions similar to the ones on their debut, only with hilarious cartoon noises from Loony Tunes replaced with the somewhat scarier stuff featured on their first album. Also, "Suspended Animation" sounds more professional than their debut, with a surprisingly lighter mood and overall better production.

It's difficult to pick one favorite track though, concidering that there are 30 of them on this album, all so diverse, creative and original in their own ways, I just have to say that I love them all (well, at least most of them, there are a couple of weaker moments too, though not many). Fantômas has not loosed their creativity or compositional skills, with other words. Mike Patton seems to contribute less vocal-acrobatics here than on Fantômas previous albums, focusing more on silly cartoon samples, famous from Loony Tunes especially. It does not making this album weaker though, in fact, it only makes it better and even more funny than on their first release, which saying a lot. The music is complex, heavy and extremely experimental. Just like Fantômas are and hopefully always will be!

I'll give this one 4.75/5, rounded up to 5.

Review by The Wizard
4 stars The thing I like about this album is that you'll never get bored listening to it. You may pay with your sanity. It is truly spontaneous and schizophrenic, a real listening adventure. They just keep on throwing stuff at you, burst of madness after burst of madness. Many people will go insane listening to this, and I don't blame them. It's a relentless assault on your nervous system and one of the most intense things you can listen to.

Lombardo really does wonders on the drums, playing burst of staccatos and constantly changing rhythms like mad. Buzzo is a beast, playing burst of speed metal riffing that's heavy but not sludgy like his work in The Melvins. Trevor Dunn doesnt make a lot of notable contribution on bass, but that's probably because of the music's schizoid nature. Regardless he keeps up with the ADD nature of the music and holds it together. Patton makes some weird noises with his mouth and adds the final layer of weirdness to the music.

All sorts of demented sound effects appear in this album, many from cartoons. Children talking to mindless chatter to carnival sounds to ethnic chanting also appear. Some are just random, weird sounding noises. It doesnt sound very appealing but for some reason I like it. It all goes together in some disjointed, cubist way.

If you can't enjoy heavy and fast music then it would be best to stay clear. This is probably the heaviest album I listen to. Unlike Delerium Cordia none of this album is mellow or atmospheric. As I said before it never lets up. If you're looking for melody then stay clear, this just a full album of controlled insanity and chaos. The open minded are recommended to indulge, otherwise back off. You may lose your sanity.

Review by 1800iareyay
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+

Review by FruMp
4 stars Musical ADD

FANTOMAS is something of a super group assembled by the ceaseless Mike Patton of FAITH NO MORE, MR BUNGLE and dozens of other projects comprising himself, Buzz Osbourne - guitarist from legendary stoner metal band The Melvins, Dave Lombardo - the drummer from seminal thrash band Slayer and Patton's childhood friend and fellow MR BUNGLE conspirator - Trevor Dunn on Bass. Together this formidable Quartet traverse hundreds of musical landscapes in the quickest possible time. The music combines most of the genres you could think of (although it occupies the realm of avant-garde metal most often), interspersed with utterly mind melting production, various circuit bent toys, samples from Warner Brother cartoons and Patton's general vocal wailings, it is truly unique and extremely fast paced and unrelenting, if you aren't up to it then you'll quickly get lost or have some kind of breakdown.

The album was recorded over the month of April in 2005 with one song written and recorded for each day, each song also corresponds to a special day on the special calender provided in the liner of the CD. it's hard to pinpoint highlights as it all moves so quick and even though the songs are usually around one minute in length various musical ideas completely disjointed from one another are usually explored. That said there are some definite standout tracks those being 4-02-05, our extreme introduction into suspended animation 4-13-05 with it's perverted take on 90's cop drama theme, 4-14-05 with it's snarling middle eastern chanting breakdown the haunting intermission song 4-15-05. I also like the first track (the first of April obviously) as it resembles a very noisy rocket ship taking off, I couldn't think of better symbolism.

The instrumentation on this album is amazing, Lombardo's drumming is frenetic and fast, Dunn's bass work is robotic, Buzz's guitar work is sharp and abrasive but full credit really must be given to Mike Patton, he's the man behind it all with the synths and the crazy samples, he's the one that composes the songs (yes they really are thought out compositions believe it or not, I saw FANTOMAS live on the suspended animation tour and they played all the songs perfectly, the greatest musical feat I've seen performed) and he's the one that decides what goes on in the band and he's come up with a gem of avant-garde music.

Overall suspended animation is an amazingly dense, varied, interesting and challenging chunk of uncompromising music, but it's to be recommended with caution, this is extreme, it's metal and it changes ideas and directions literally every 10 seconds if you're up to it then it will reward you richly but there's a good chance most people wont be able to stand it. Recommended to fans of extreme, avant-garde music and people with short attention spans.

Review by James Lee
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars There are almost as many ways to appreciate music as there are music-lovers. Some people go for a good tale, some a danceable beat, some just love the sound of an overdriven B4 through a Leslie.

Me, I'm a sucker for mystery. Give me lyrics that I can't understand, sounds that I can't quite place, and put everything together in a way that confuses and/or frightens me. I don't have to be able to figure it fact, I don't really want to figure it out, because most of the time the answer is so much more disappointing than the mystery.

That's why I like "Suspended Animation" so much. There are a thousand little bits of intriguing pieces that would probably disappoint if they were forced to become 'actual songs'. Strung together with lightning speed (and undeniable skill at rhythm and composition, despite the seeming randomness), your mind tries to make sense of it all...and your results may vary, but the memories and references that these works elicit from me are well worth the lack of typical musical gratification.

Is it madness? By no means. Crazy people make sloppy music (which has its own special merit, as any Syd Barrett or Daniel Johnston fan will agree). Check out one of Fantomas' live clips if you want to see the very antithesis of sloppy.

This is not the splice-happy plunderphonics of media vigilantes like my beloved Negativland; I doubt Patton & company are trying to make any ideological points about anything specific. Nor is this the by-the-numbers, run-of-the-mill, cut-and-paste rhythmic randomness of your typical drum-and-bass track (whoa, hold on to your hyphens!).This is intentional, methodical, yet highly affecting and evocative.

Of course, it helps if you like the kinds of sounds they use. If you're turned off by cartoon soundtracks and extreme metal, you'll be missing a lot of the fun of the band. Personally, I couldn't be happier that Patton left behind the funk-metal 80's and carnival-ska 90's. It does make me wonder how it will stand the test of time...most of Faith No More and at least half of Mr. Bungle seem less impressive and interesting every time I listen.

Ultimately, this is what I consider to be the best of "modern" every sense of the word. This is the soundtrack to our times, technologically hyper and self-consciously (almost sentimentally) retro, yet with a genuine artistic commitment to the work that belies the potential emptiness of its post-modernist approach (say what? Did I really write that?).

Be scared or laugh at it...react however you want, even if it's utter confusion and contempt. But "Suspended Animation" is definitely worth reacting to; though it seems to throw everything at you, none of it is actually disposable - how many albums, even great ones, can make that same claim?

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is one crazy and intense Fantômas-release!

I personally have always had a hard time digesting 25+ album tracks in one go (no matter the length and style). For instance it took me weeks until I started to appreciate The Residents Commercial Album, same goes for Thordendal's Sol Niger Within. This album is hard to explain even after listening to it a couple of times, I still can't put my finger on it. My only possible conclusion is that there is no doubt that Patton was heavily influenced by John Zorn since Zorn is a master of short and crazy compositions that can be heard on his Naked City albums.

The short format that this album actually fits the lineup a whole lot better. For instance Dave Lombardo's drumming becomes even more energetic bringing out that distinct Slayer flavor that I was expecting of his. While Buzz Osborne and Trevor Dunn might sound a bit too much like Punk for my tastes Patton is always there to supervise the development by not letting it run over in one specific genre. The music always feels creative, playful and ... alive!

Although Suspended Animation might not be for everyone I still have to give it my warmest recommendations, but just be warned that this is not music that I recommend experiencing through passive listening. Check it out if you are a fan of crazy compositions and aren't afraid to undertake a demanding challenge.

***** star songs: 04/01/05 Friday (0:34) 04/03/05 Sunday (1:45) 04/06/05 Wednesday (2:25) 04/10/05 Sunday (2:19) 04/13/05 Wednesday (1:31)

**** star songs: 04/02/05 Saturday (2:10) 04/04/05 Monday (1:32) 04/07/05 Thursday (1:08) 04/08/05 Friday (1:09) 04/09/05 Saturday (1:17) 04/12/05 Tuesday (1:15) 04/14/05 Thursday (2:20) 04/15/05 Friday (0:39) 04/16/05 Saturday (0:49) 04/17/05 Sunday (0:45) 04/18/05 Monday (0:47) 04/19/05 Tuesday (0:40) 04/20/05 Wednesday (1:49) 04/21/05 Thursday (1:39) 04/22/05 Friday (2:05) 04/23/05 Saturday (0:58) 04/24/05 Sunday (1:48) 04/26/05 Tuesday (1:31) 04/27/05 Wednesday (1:12) 04/29/05 Friday (1:28) 04/30/05 Saturday (3:08)

*** star songs: 04/05/05 Tuesday (0:33) 04/11/05 Monday (2:17) 04/25/05 Monday (0:31) 04/28/05 Thursday (1:30)

Review by rushfan4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
1 stars WTF?

I don't think that I will ever understand the human mind or I suppose in this case the mind of a musician. As has been mentioned in other reviews Fantomas delivers material (difficult for me to use the term music) that has never been delivered before. But in my opinion, that is for good reason. There is pretty much nothing worth while to listen to on this album. It covers 30 compositions in 45 minutes. Each composition is made up of some musical notes haphazardly thrown together combined with seemingly random sounds, most the kind that would be heard in a children's cartoon, and combined with Mike Patton's patented guttoral screams. There are no lyrics to be heard here nor to be sung along to. Mike Patton's clean voice from his Faith No More days is nowhere to be heard on this album. The lack of lyrics might be fine if this were the type of instrumental album where you can play along on air guitar or air drums or hum along to the melodies and harmonies but these don't exist either. Sadly despite all of this, this album still somehow is more listenable than its predecessor Delirium Cordia, which was an even more dreadful listening experience. I suppose that I am probably not qualified to review this material since clearly I don't "understand" it or the artist's vision. If you get off on seemingly random musical notes combined with random sounds and guttural screams than this might be a 5 star album, but for someone like me who likes singable lyrics or at least drums and guitars that I can tap my feet to or hum along with this is clearly a 1 star affair.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
4 stars SUSPENDED ANIMATION is the fourth album by the extremely bizarre super-group FANTÔMAS led by the always eccentric Mike Patton who once again doesn't disappoint in the weirdness department. On this installment in the FANTÔMAS universe we get a dual theme of incorporating their energetic speed sludge with cartoon music and other sounds of innocence ranging from children playing to little kids' toys. The album was released as a regular album and as a limited edition which is the one i have. This package is as bizarre as the music it holds. It is bound with one of those metal spirals that are on notebooks and it contains a mini calendar which has a page for each day in the month of April accompanied by the artwork of Yo[&*!#]omo Nara who blends the innocence of youth with dark and disturbing imagery.

After an album of soundtrack theme interpretation and another strange album that only contained one track lasting over an hour, FANTÔMAS goes back to the formula of their debut and ups the surreality a few notches by delivering an extreme roller coaster ride of sonic madness. This is some frantic stuff this one but the sound effects and music are seamlessly blended together coming and going without notice and the production is absolutely brilliantly executed and is dizzying to the mind how long it took to blend all these sounds and musical outbursts together so well. Generally speaking the thirty short tracks which start with some kind of cartoonish sound effects are either inspired by or directly borrowed from various sources including Warner Bros and other Carl Stalling creations and then morphs into energetic speed sludge hysteria. Mike Patton only creates wordless vocalizations which seem to take the lead in directing the rest of the band to follow.

There are all kinds of different rhythms, moods and sound effects streaming at the speed of light throughout this one but if you are already familiar with Mike Patton's other works including the other FANTÔMAS albums you will hear familiar ideas only tweaked to be even weirder than before. This is a hard listen at first (and second and third!!!) but if you embrace the extremely demented creations of maddened genii then you might appreciate this one. This exists in a universe that few will dare to tread but for those who do be warned that even though you will find hummable melodies galore, the franticness of this wild concoction will demand multiple listens to get the gist of.

Review by Warthur
4 stars A weirdly sunny album for the crushingly heavy Fantomas - don't worry, the riffs and vocal work are still as bizarre as ever, but they are augmented this time by the beeping and booping of children's toys, playful cartoon music, and giggling kids. Maybe Patton, Osborne, Lombardo and Dunn were in a particularly chirpy mood, but this is like candy floss for alternative and extreme metal fans - a brace of experimental brief tracks (with titles inspired by various holidays and festivals during the month of April) displaying a joyous playfulness and even a certain happiness which the dark aesthetic of extreme metal tends to spurn. Happy times.
Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars How could you expect anything but craziness from a band that incorporates Mike Patton (one of the most talented and versatile singers ever from Faith No More, Mr. Bungle, and the John Zorn driven Moonchild), Buzz Osborne (The Misfits), Trevor Dunn (Mr. Bungle), and Dave Lombardo (Slayer). Fantomas has always created quirky music, many times derived from cinematic influences.

"Suspended Animation" is probably the quirkiest of all of Fantomas music, seemingly composed and played by musicians with ADD. The musical ideas come and go so quickly that it is almost impossible to grasp everything that is going on here. The album is based around cartoon-sounding music with a lot of samples and sound effects, plus complex music based on every day of the month of April and the holidays celebrated on a daily basis, which range from the popular April Fool's Day to the more obscure Plan You Epitaph Day or National Scoop the Poop Day. The 30 track titles are named mostly after the holiday names, and the average track length is 90 seconds long. However, when you listen to this album, it is impossible to distinguish one song from the other as they are all connected without hardly a pause and each track can have several different thematic elements, melodies and styles, never resting too long on any single idea. It's quite a mish mash of sounds, even more complex than some of Zappa's most complex music. But, as crazy and haphazard as it may seem, it is all composed and structured, flawlessly played by the amazing musicians involved. Much of this will probably go over the average listener's head.

Yes you get everything you expect. Loud, heavy passages, kooky sound effects, amazing musicianship, Patton's maniacal vocals, and a hell of a lot of unpredictability. It may be too much to take for many listeners, and I find that I have to be in the right mood to handle it. But, how do you take something so complex and just minimize it to being a chaotic jumble of musical ideas? The first time I heard this several years ago, I was speechless and not quite sure what to think of it all. But as my tastes have become more eclectic, I find this more and more enjoyable. I still consider it one of the most quirky and chaotic albums out there, but it makes more sense now than it used to. Just don't expect to be whistling it any time soon, and you'll be okay.

Because of it's extreme complexity, the thing that should make it a masterpiece is the thing that keeps it from being one. But, I can't deny the fact that the music is extraordinary and fun, amazing yet a bit frustrating to listen to. You'll find yourself laughing at times because of the humor, and laughing at other times because you have been pushed over the brink of insanity. 4 stars.

Latest members reviews

1 stars I have decided to write the review of this album after I saw that it is the highest rated album of Fantomas. I must say that I don't agree with so high rating of this album. As some of other reviewers mentioned earlier Fantomas is not exactly a music. I must say that I really enjoy their second a ... (read more)

Report this review (#373045) | Posted by cataclysta | Wednesday, January 5, 2011 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Mike Patton has proven himself to be one of the most prolific and unpredictable musicians in show business in his post Faith No More/Mr. Bungle career. Although I don't even begin to attempt to collect everything he puts out I do like to take a listen to what he's up to now and then. SUSPENDED ... (read more)

Report this review (#222058) | Posted by catfood03 | Saturday, June 20, 2009 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Fantomas - Suspended Animation The latest output from Fantomas showcases a much faster paced outlook than the preceding Delirium Cordia offered. Actually, when putting the albums side by side, they seem almost polar opposites of each other. While the former is a dark, long, immensely performed ... (read more)

Report this review (#170946) | Posted by Figglesnout | Wednesday, May 14, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars It'd be pretty pointless to say how chaotic and bizzare this album is considering Mike Patton is involved. "Suspended Animation" sees Fantomas going back to the format of their first album: lots of short songs, all hovering around the minute-and-a-half mark. Whereas the previous album "Delirium C ... (read more)

Report this review (#125805) | Posted by Arsillus | Thursday, June 14, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Chaos in Compact Disc form When my friend first showed me Fantomas, I was very confused, but in a good way. The inherent weirdness that seems to be in all Patton-related projects is on overdrive for this band (though I vastly prefer Mr. Bungle's work). This album's styles are all over the plac ... (read more)

Report this review (#108304) | Posted by heyitsthatguy | Sunday, January 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars A curious fact abbout this album is that it uses samplers from a series of cartoons. Parallel to the inspiration used in Directors Cut. This album is pretty easy to listen to combining sudden frantic metal rifts and drum work whith diferent paces and instrumentation. Allways keeping it intere ... (read more)

Report this review (#104894) | Posted by Doobie | Saturday, December 30, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I'm familiar with most of the previous works of all of the artists of Fantomas, and I have to say that every one is at the absolute peak of their game on this album. The sum of their parts conveys exactly what is intended; Mania (or more accurately, the emotional rollercoaster that is Manic-Depr ... (read more)

Report this review (#58825) | Posted by Shaikoten | Thursday, December 1, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Mike Patton is somekind of genius. Not many people today can describe it's topic with pure sound; no real melodies or lyrics - just sound. Sound which is somewhere between random noise, heavy guitars, and sometimes something very beautiful. I'm hoping to see Fantomas live some day, because I c ... (read more)

Report this review (#38147) | Posted by | Friday, July 1, 2005 | Review Permanlink

3 stars CD completely bizarre, very wild, nothing has linking with nothing, is a very crazy chunk, of pra not to practically understand nothing, few melodies and much doidêra. Good record only pra who wants to "zuar", but if you want to tan a good music, nor try to hear. He does not give nor "to beat ... (read more)

Report this review (#35412) | Posted by | Monday, June 6, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars this album is wonderful... the artwork is amazing, the production is amazing, and of course.. mike patton and company are amazing! I read one or two reviews above that stated they were dissapointed with the fact that it wasn't nearly as maccabre as their previous releases. that is true, but i ... (read more)

Report this review (#34678) | Posted by | Thursday, May 26, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars > All I can say iz: OH MY GAWD...Fantomas flippin' RAWK! This review is based on seeing Fantomas last night & hearing "Suspended Animation" the next day after show...( can I type: triple Whoa Brain Mania, doods!)? Strange & beautiful music; visceral & tighter than a miser w/rigor mortis. ... (read more)

Report this review (#34677) | Posted by | Tuesday, May 24, 2005 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This is a good album, not much more. It was hugely overhyped by critics and fans alike, and the end result is a little diassapointing to tell the truth. For the first time, Patton's gimics actualy hurts his work. His "insanity" has been present in all his bands, most prevalently in some moment ... (read more)

Report this review (#34673) | Posted by | Tuesday, May 3, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars There are no words for the insanity of this album. There truely aren't. I remember I said once that Director's Cut was Fantomas at their best; well, I've been proven wrong. I cannot even begin to do justice for this album, YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW! Until you hear it that is. The instrumentation i ... (read more)

Report this review (#34671) | Posted by Spanky | Sunday, April 10, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Awesome album! I just got it yesterday and I have listened to it at least four times and I'm still continuing to be amazed by it. Only Fantomas could create something this enjoyable and creative. If you didn't know by now, Supsended Animation is an entire album based around the month of Apri ... (read more)

Report this review (#34670) | Posted by aqualung28 | Wednesday, April 6, 2005 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of FANTÔMAS "Suspended Animation"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.