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1002, 2017

LONG READ: The story of Faith No More’s first number one

February 10th, 2017|Faith No More, News|5 Comments

“We’ve got to crack that radio attitude. Too many bands that were great bands have withered up and died because they didn’t pursue it and most of the world never got to hear about them.”

Faith No More bassist and talisman Bill Gould was speaking to The Sydney Morning Herald in June 1990, making no excuses for a band seeking chart and commercial success. It was fitting then that Australia proved the locus for their breakthrough chart success. on 26 August, 1990, the band’s Epic single reached the top of Australia’s official ARIA singles charts.

It was Faith No More’s first number one anywhere – and the first of two in Australia. Remarkably, the band had not even set foot in Oz until one month before topping the chart. Their first show was in Transformers in Brisbane on 29 July. They also played a live session for leading Australian radio station Triple J around this time. Officially dated as 30 July and broadcast on that date, the session may actually have been recorded on the 28 or 29 July. The redoubtable FNM Live site reports: “Puffy walks out during “War Pigs” due to taunts from the band about his playing. He had hurt his ribs during bungee jumping in New Zealand. Patton takes over drums on the song.” That bungee jump was widely reported with the San Francisco Chronicle capturing some band comments:

“It was sheer terror, I would never have done it except for the peer group pressure from the other guys in the band,” said bassist Bill Gould, who arrived Monday in Sydney with the group’s entourage for six performances. “It was so bloody high, I’ve never been so horrified in my entire life,” Gould said. “But it turned out to be the best thing I’ve ever done.” Vocalist Mike Patton added to the adventure by dangling from the elastic cable clad in only his undershorts and a sweatshirt.

Check out some discussion of and footage from that jump here on New Zealand TV (via Faith No More Followers)

And here is the actual session

The band played an impressive 13 shows in Australia in late July and August – and this and a promo roller-coaster propelled them to the top spot. Not that the critics were completely overwhelmed by their live shows, with the Sydney Morning Herald reviewing one of their two Marquee Sydney shows under the headline: “THE CROWD CAME FOR THE NOISE, AND NOISE IS WHAT THEY GOT”. The article also stated:

“While their name suggests a kind of disaffected nihilism, perfectly suited to the times, they are, in reality, strikingly loyal to their antecedents; their present is very much the literal transfiguration of their past, the sum of their influences.

They come on stage to a tape that sounds like Shostakovich meeting Metallica, or the brooding soundtrack to some big-budget Hollywood feature, and attempt – not always successfully – to maintain that sense of the epic, the cinematic, throughout the course of their performance.

There’s no reason why it shouldn’t work: on record, their music is a seamless fusion of abrasive power chords and symphonic keyboard washes – the effect veering oddly between some of the more pompous excesses of the ’70s(Rush, Emerson Lake&Palmer, et al), and contemporary hardcore speed metal.

Witnessed live, however, volume and distortion conspire to deny that all important balance, with the effect that guitar swamps the proceedings, and much of the subtlety is lost.”

The review concludes:

“This is not to say it wasn’t good – for a metal concert (which was, after all, what most of the audience expected and desired), it was fine. As an event, though, it lacked only that ineffable something that would have taken it from being merely good, into the realm of the truly extraordinary.

I’ts a pity, because that other, higher goal was always within sight, but proved just out of reach.”

The rest of Australia was hooked, however. The re-released single of Epic, with a B-side of The Morning After (and including a yellow cassette single version) was released in late July. Here’s what it looked like, courtesy of Patton Mad.

Epic entered the chart on 22 July 1990 at a creditable 31, the highest new entry of the week. By the following week, it had risen to number 17, nestled between Madonna’s Hanky Panky and Snap’s The Power.

(All chart images and info courtesy of the incredible Chart Beats website)

The following week (5 August) it hit the top 10, reaching number 2 the week after. But Epic was held at bay for two weeks by the continued dominance of none other than…MC Hammer. With U Can’t Touch This.

Hammer was wrong. One week later, Faith No More touched number one – and they would stay there for three weeks in total. (Holding off firstly the challenge of Concrete Blonde’s Joey and then Jon Bon Jovi’s Blaze of Glory). It was finally knocked off the top spot on 16 September by the hirsute New Jerseyian’s cowboy anthem.

Well-timed touring, Australia’s openness to rock music, a killer song and targeted promotion all combined to earn Faith No More’s first number one. Local record store Utopia also claimed some of the glory. In September, the Morning Herald featured an interview with Dave Defig from the Sydney store. He said: “We basically discovered Faith No More here years ago; somebody woke up to them finally and they’ve now had a number one.”

The band would score two further notable triumphs in Australia in 1990. Epic ranked at 22 in the chart of the year’s best-selling singles. Then on 23 December Faith No More won the Gisborne Handicap (1,000m) at Moonee Valley. A horse named in their honour, of course.

I’m Easy

Faith No More would go on to have a second Australian number one in 1993. I’m Easy, as Easy was entitled on this release, reached the top spot on the singles chart on 16 May – after nine weeks on the chart. It stayed there for two weeks – dropping Lenny Kravitz’s Are You Gonna Go My Way to 2 – before being usurped by Janet Jackson’s That’s The Way Love Goes.

Just like in 1990. Faith No More’s chart-topping came just after a the band had played a series of shows in Australia. In fact, the band played 11 shows in little over two weeks and were in New Zealand playing in Christchurch they day they hit number one in Australia again. And this time the reviews were more positive:

What makes Faith No More more than just another bunch of hairies who know how to crank it up is the perverse, self-parodying streak that runs through their work. You get the feeling, as each song begins, that it might end up somewhere completely different, maybe even visiting a few interesting places along the way.

The addition of keyboard player Rodney Bottum to the standard guitar-based lineup gives them room for contrast and, recalling the Mothers of Invention, he spends a lot of his time inserting atmospherics that run against the grain of the work, odd juxtapositions that convert what might otherwise be too linear into a tangle of ideas.

In one song, they sample the Happy Mondays’ Hallelujah, and in another, begin with a funkier version of the theme from Twin Peaks. Any band that can include fragments of the Bay City Rollers and the Birthday Party in one of their own tracks, Be Aggressive, has to be applauded.

It is this sense of playfulness, this undercurrent of mischief that makes Faith No More so appealing and made the Hordern crowds stand on the seats to catch a glimpse.
(Sydney Morning Herald)

And the band performed the show live on Nine Network’s evening show Hey Hey It’s Saturday in late April.

In an interview with – you guessed it – the Sydney Morning Herald on 6 May, Mike Patton explained some of the logic behind I’m Easy:

“I remember we were talking to a guy from this death metal band called Morbid Angel. They’re this amazing band who are really powerful – but hilarious at the same time.” He frowns: “Though I’m not sure if they’re aware of that or not …

“Anyway, this guy said how much he loved our version of Easy, and I said, ‘Well, why don’t you guys do something like that? You’re the guys who should be trying that. I mean, you’d just take people’s heads off if you were to do something like an easy-listening album.’

“And he just looked at me and said, ‘You don’t understand. We can’t do that. We physically can’t do it.’ Which to me, just goes to show how people in the entertainment industry build their own prisons. This band will never do that.”

Faith No More’s two number ones means they have as many chart-toppers in Australia as David Bowie and Prince. Even more incredibly, they have twice as many Aussie number ones as Australian icons AC/DC, INXS, Nick Cave and Nathalie Imbruglia combined.

 

 

 

2009, 2016

CHART UPDATE: King for a Day… in Billboard top 200 sales, UK rock and vinyl charts

September 20th, 2016|Faith No More, News|1 Comment

Faith No More’s King for a Day…Fool for a Lifetime re-release has made some chart impact in both sides of the Atlantic.

While the record misses out on a return to the US Billboard 200 album charts (where is peaked at 31 in April 1995), it is listed at number 195 in the Billboard Top Album Sales 200 with sales of 1447.

Meanwhile in the Official UK charts, KFAD features at:
Number 12 in the UK Rock Albums Chart
Number 32 in the UK Vinyl Chart

And We Care a Lot entered the Billboard Catalog chart at 32 on the week of its release. It also failed to reach the Billboard 200, which monitors streaming and downloads as well as pure sales, but did peak at 129 in the Billboard album sales charts with sales of 2271 in its first week.

Deluxe editions of ‘King For A Day’ and ‘Album Of The Year’ available now, each including brand new remasters of the original album along with a load of rarities + B sides. Available as 2CD, 2x 180g LP and on iTunes + streaming.

Get copies here:

2608, 2016

Faith No More We Care a Lot re-issue number 22 in UK vinyl chart

August 26th, 2016|Faith No More, News|1 Comment

Faith No More’s deluxe band issue of We Care a Lot has charted at 22 in the Official UK Charts Vinyl rundown.

The re-issue is also number 75 in the offical Physical charts.

However, despite featuring in the midweek chart. WCAL does not feature in the overall Album chart, which also takes into account downloads and streaming.

2608, 2016

Faith No More We Care a Lot in top 100 in UK album chart midweeks

August 26th, 2016|Faith No More, News|0 Comments

The Official UK charts will be announced later today and the deluxe band issue of Faith No More’s We Care a Lot seems set to feature after it appeared at number 84 in the midweek chart.

fnmchartuk

 

106, 2015

CHARTS: Faith No More in at number 6 in Portugal

June 1st, 2015|Faith No More, News|0 Comments

Another top 10 album placing for Sol Invictus with the Faith No More album going in at number 6 in Portugal.

It is the only anglophone record in the top 14 on the chart and testament to the hardcore support the band have in the country – as anyone who saw them at the Optimus Alive festival in 2010 will testify.

In other chart news, the album slipped to number 35 in the official UK album charts in its second week, number 10 in Australia and number 11 in New Zealand.

But in terms of peak positions and opening week placings, Sol Invictus has hit the top 10 in 18 countries (if you include the proper US chart)

Sol Invictus in charts worldwide (peak position)

#1 in Finland
#2 in Australia
#2 in Czech Republic
#2 in Norway
#3 in Switzerland
#4 in Belgium (Flanders)
#4 in Germany
#4 in Poland
#5 in Scotland
#6 in Denmark
#6 in UK
#6 in New Zealand
#6 in Portugal
#6 in US album sales
#7 in Austria
#7 in Netherlands
#9 in Canada
#10 in France
#10 in Ireland
#15 in US Billboard chart
#15 in Belgium (French)
#20 in Italy
#23 in Spain
#27 in Sweden

2905, 2015

CHARTS: Faith No More Sol Invictus debuts at number 4 in Poland, 20 in Italy

May 29th, 2015|Faith No More, News|0 Comments

More chart news this Friday and Faith No More has gone straight in at number 4 in the official OLIS Polish album charts. The album has also gone in at number 20 in Italy’s official FIMI album charts.

Sol Invictus is the highest new entry in Poland and the fourth-highest in Italy.

Sol Invictus in charts worldwide (peak position)

#1 in Finland
#2 in Australia
#2 in Czech Republic
#2 in Norway
#3 in Switzerland
#4 in Belgium (Flanders)
#4 in Germany
#4 in Poland
#5 in Scotland
#6 in Denmark
#6 in UK
#6 in New Zealand
#6 in US album sales
#7 in Austria
#7 in Netherlands
#9 in Canada
#10 in France
#10 in Ireland
#15 in US Billboard chart
#15 in Belgium (French)
#20 in Italy
#23 in Spain
#27 in Sweden

2905, 2015

CHARTS: Faith No More up to number 4 in Belgian charts

May 29th, 2015|Faith No More, News|0 Comments

Faith No More’s Sol Invictus has jumped to number 4 in Belgium’s (Flanders) album chart in its second week.

It has dropped to 23 in its second week in the Netherlands and is down to number 12 in its second week in the French-speaking part of Belgium.

Sol Invictus in charts worldwide (peak position)

#1 in Finland
#2 in Australia
#2 in Czech Republic
#4 in Belgium (Flanders)
#2 in Norway
#3 in Switzerland
#4 in Germany
#5 in Scotland
#6 in Denmark
#6 in UK
#6 in New Zealand
#6 in US album sales
#7 in Austria
#7 in Netherlands
#9 in Canada
#10 in France
#10 in Ireland
#15 in US Billboard chart
#15 in Belgium (French)
#23 in Spain
#27 in Sweden

 

2905, 2015

CHARTS: Faith No More Sol Invictus enters at number 2 in Norway album charts and number 6 in Denmark

May 29th, 2015|Faith No More, News|0 Comments

Another day and another very high chart placing for Faith No More album Sol Invictus. The album has debuted at number 2 in the Norwegian VG Lista Top 40 album chart.

It is the band’s best-ever album placing in Norway beating Album of the Year which peaked at number 5 in 1997, King for a Day…which reached number 6 and Angel Dust which peaked at number 7 in 1992.

vgchart

Denmark

And Sol Invictus has now debuted at number 6 in Denmark’s album charts also – the second highest new entry.

denmark

In other chart news, Sol Invictus looks set to drop outside the German top 10 in its second week. The VIVA midweek chart has it at number 16. The new chart will be announced later today.
And Sol Invictus is now number 19 in the Irish album charts in its second week.

Sol Invictus in charts worldwide

#1 in Finland
#2 in Australia
#2 in Czech Republic
#2 in Norway
#3 in Switzerland
#4 in Germany
#5 in Scotland
#6 in Denmark
#6 in UK
#6 in New Zealand
#6 in US album sales
#7 in Austria
#7 in Netherlands
#9 in Canada
#10 in Belgium (Flemish)
#10 in France
#10 in Ireland
#15 in US Billboard chart
#15 in Belgium (French)
#23 in Spain
#27 in Sweden

2805, 2015

BILLBOARD CHARTS: Faith No More #15 on Billboard 200, #1 on Hard Rock, Independent and Tastemaker charts

May 28th, 2015|Faith No More, News|4 Comments

Update after Billboard published their charts

Faith No More Sol Invictus is

#15 in Billboard 200
#6 in Album Sales

#1 on Hard Rock Albums
#1 on Tastemaker Albums
#1 in Independent Albums

#2 in Rock Albums
#2 on Alternative Albums

#7 on Digital Albums

2805, 2015

CHARTS: Faith No More hits top 10 in France, #2 in Czech Republic, #9 in Canada and more

May 28th, 2015|Faith No More, News|3 Comments

The latest French official SNEP album charts have just been announced and Faith No More’s Sol Invictus is a new entry at a frankly astounding number 10.

France is certainly not a rock heartland  (apologies to Bertrand, Stevan and Nessie) and the French charts are normally dominated by local and at least francophone artists, so this is another significant charting for the band’s seventh studio album.

Indeed, the album is the only non-francophone title in the top 19 of the charts – Snoop Dogg makes it in at number 20. Again kudos to PIAS France who did a good job promoting the album in France. I’m now hoping the band can follow up this interest with a a French TV appearance with Canal Plus’ Album de la Semaine the dream.

It is Faith No More’s highest-charting album in France – with Album of the Year having peaked at number 17.

Strangely, the album is number 11 in both the physical and download charts but makes it to number 10 overall.

doc-page-001

 

Czech Republic

Sol Invictus has gone straight in at number 2 in the Czech Republic album charts. Again it is the only non-local album in the top 10 there. And again it is the band’s best-charting album in the country.

  TT -1T -2T Interpret Titul Vyd. NP PK PH
1 1 17 RADŮZA Marathon (Příběh běžce) SUPRAPHON 1 3 1
2 NEW FAITH NO MORE Sol Invictus MYSTIC PRODUCTION 2 1 1
3 NEW KRAUSBERRY Best Of 31 SUPRAPHON 3 1 1
4 7 2 ANETA LANGEROVÁ Na Radosti ART SHOCK/SUPRAPHON 1 24 1
5 3 3 DAVID KOLLER ČeskosLOVEnsko BRAINZONE 1 10 2
6 NEW MAJK SPIRIT Y White ZÁVODSKÝ 6 1 1
7 NEW TŘI SESTRY Fernet Underground WARNER MUSIC 7 1 3
8 8 1 KAREL KRYL Bratříčku, zavírej vrátka SUPRAPHON 1 4 3
9 2 4 CHINASKI Rockfield BRAINZONE 1 29 2
10 NEW ABRAXAS Klid! SUPRAPHON 10 1 1

Canada

The charts have not been published but Sol Invictus will debut at number 9 in the Billboard Canadian charts.

Spain

Sol Invictus has entered at number 23 in the Spanish album charts.

Álbumes - 18-5-2015 a 24-5-2015-page-001

Sol Invictus in charts worldwide

#1 in Finland
#2 in Australia
#2 in Czech Republic
#3 in Switzerland
#4 in Germany
#5 in Scotland
#6 in UK
#6 in New Zealand
#6 in US album sales
#7 in Austria
#7 in Netherlands
#9 in Canada
#10 in Belgium (Flemish)
#10 in France
#10 in Ireland
#14 in US
#15 in Belgium (French)
#23 in Spain
#27 in Sweden

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