Here’s our latest review round-up
Examiner.com has given Sol Invictus a 5/5 review under the headline “Time to introduce the kids to Faith No More (if you haven’t already)”. Reviewer David Musto says:
“Sol Invictus slides right into its slot as the next entry of their discography as though time means nothing. Usually after such a long time away, something lags and it’s often the singer’s voice that sounds different. Mike Patton has kept plenty busy, however, and maintained his astonishing range.”
Friends of the site mxdwn.com also give a glowing and detailed review which is well worth reading in its entirety. They say:
“The decrescendo of the bookend comes from the epic “Matador.” Diehard fans will remember this was the first new song the band did after reforming in 2009. This one aims for the darker, practically gothic end of rocking rather than an explosive release. The lines “We will rise from the killing floor / like a Matador,” and “Let the dead live / May the dead live,” further the theme of rebirth and embracing their place in music. Hudson again brings the shining moment with about sixteen bars of immaculate soloing to close out the epic track. And appropriately, that sentiment is wrapped up neatly with the plaintive and playful “From the Dead” that closes out the album.
A careful study would have expected Faith No More to mine the same wildly divergent ground they had in previous years. However, the band in their time apart has matured considerably, gaining faith most prominently, in themselves. Instead of challenging music as a whole, they instead challenge their own abilities and the expectations of their fans. And, they manage it while rocking a sly smile. The final line of “From the Dead” is literally “Welcome home my friend.” Welcome home indeed. And not a moment too soon.”
The San Diego-based site takes a slightly different tack than most reviews and is betetr for it. it is a very well-judged and considered review:
“Which is why Sol Invictus, their first album in 17 years, is such a surprise. There’s still an underlying fascination with the corrupted and morbid, and the sporadic dirty joke, but there’s also an unexpected responsibility attached as well. Not the sedentary kind of responsibility one associates with aging, but the kind of accountability one gets when they realize the world’s gotten three times as fucked up as they foretold. For better or worse, FNM have to provide solutions—or, failing that, which is inevitable, at least some really direct questions.”
I also really liked this segment:
“Black Friday” is another one of Patton’s logical extensions of hyper-consumerism—containing the wonderful phrase “the grandest frappé”—with him screaming “Buy it!” the way Michael Stipe intoned “Fire!” in R.E.M.’s “The One I Love.” “Motherfucker” is a rote, almost Jimmy Dean-like recitation of the crimes of swivel-chair imperialism that would be overdone if it wasn’t paced so nicely. It pairs well with the slaughterhouse revenge fantasy of “Matador.” Improbably wrapping up the whole thing is the outrageously shiny “From the Dead,” a sweet homecoming anthem that borrows a lot from, of all things, Supertramp’s “Give a Little Bit.” It’s hard to tell how sincere Patton’s being when he sings “Welcome home my friend,” but even if the release is death and not the folksy rebirth it implies, it works either way.”
The London site gives a 8/10 score and states:
“The man with one of the most striking voices in modern music. Once heard never forgotten and every time it makes an appearance on this album you are left in awe and wonder at the sheer versatility and power of it.
That’s not to say that Sol Invictus is just the “Mike Patton Show” indeed it is quite the opposite, as every musician gets the chance to shine and the album really does feel like a pure, collaborative process. It also feels like a band who simply couldn’t give a fuck about what people want or expect from them. There is a relaxed calmness about the feel to this album which not to say its a laid back (easy like a) Sunday morning affair, in fact it’s an album seeped in darkness and intensity but it does feel like the band are really enjoying themselves in the studio fully refreshed and comfortable in their own skins.”
The Illnois paper gives Sol Invictus an A- and say:
““Sol Invictus,” the first new record from the hard rockers in 18 years, was released Monday. And while many middle-agers have lost some of the edge they had in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, Faith No More has not.
Even in their late 40s and early 50s, the members of Faith No More rock harder than most of their alternative/indie/rock counterparts.
Subtlety has never been a trait of Faith No More, and there’s none on “Sol Invictus.” That was apparent when the record’s first single, with a four-syllable expletive title that isn’t printable here, was released a few months ago.”
Los Angeles LGBT site Frontiers Media include Sol Invictus in their albums round-up and add:
“Vocalist Mike Patton is an elegant screamer when warranted, and his bandmates—keyboardist Roddy Bottum, bassist Billy Gould, drummer Mike Bordin and whatever guitarist was then currently active (it’s been Jon Hudson since 1996)—have contributed to their musical sense of wanderlust. All this to say their return is welcome in a world of indie-electro and wan shoegaze and other “alt” genres that have long lost their luster. It also helps that their seventh record may also be their best.”
A 3.25/5 rating and a scathing review from the indie site:
“Overall, Sol Invictus is a mediocre rock record. There are some decent, listenable tracks but nothing that comes close to meeting the excitement and enthusiasm for the band that nailed a generation’s angst with “Midlife Crisis.” Patton’s voice is strong and as capable today as ever of generating the same sort of passion, but there is something about the whole thing that still manages to feel dated. Keys are used mostly as a flatbed on which the band performs a very pedestrian routine. Even the intensely titled “Motherfucker” comes off feeling a little overly dramatic with its spoken-word delivery. As Patton sings, “Hello Motherfucker/ My lover/ You saw it coming,” one is left thinking: yes, I probably did.”
A palate cleanser from the metal zine and a 9.5/10 rating. They state:
“Featuring the same lineup from the last album, Album of the Year, it takes no time at all to realize that Sol Invictus is totally a FNM album, containing all of the energy, dynamic, whimsical delight, diversity and aggression one should expect in such a release, independent of the myriad bands and side-projects spawned in the band’s wake. Patton once again shows his complete prowess as a true A-lister vocalist, delivering only as he can – he, often imitated, but never replicated, as only the elite musicians in rock and roll can be.
With nary a dull moment, no shred of filler or unnecessary songs, Sol Invictus gets in and out in a seemingly fast forty minutes, spanning ten tracks. A nice length which lends itself to consecutive repeat listens, this is an album that feels so familiar, so right, and almost would justify another hiatus if a work of equal proportions were guaranteed…almost.