Watch: FANTÔMAS Reunites During Final Show Of MR. BUNGLE/MELVINS TourMay 25, 2023
Star-studded noise-mongers FANTÔMAS — who feature in their ranks FAITH NO MORE/MR. BUNGLE frontman Mike Patton, MELVINS guitarist Buzz Osborne, MR. BUNGLE bassist Trevor Dunn, and MR. BUNGLE/ex-SLAYER drummer Dave Lombardo — reunited Wednesday night (May 24) in Oakland, California at the final show of MR. BUNGLE's "Geek Show" tour with MELVINS.
Patton, Dunn and Lombardo were joined on stage by Osborne, along with MR. BUNGLE guitarists Trey Spruance and Scott Ian, for a rendition of MR. BUNGLE's "Sudden Death" before the musicians launched into FANTÔMAS's cover of Henri Mancini's "Experiment In Terror", which originally appeared on FANTÔMAS's 2001 album "The Director's Cut".
FANTÔMAS last played a full show in 2017 at Glen Helen Amphitheater in San Bernardino, California as the support act for TOOL. Lombardo was unable to make that gig due to his touring commitments with SUICIDAL TENDENCIES and was replaced by MELVINS drummer Dale Crover.
Formed in 1998 by Patton, FANTÔMAS released four studio albums, including its latest effort, 2005's "Suspended Animation".
In a recent interview with Stereogum, Lombardo said that playing the FANTÔMAS material when he first joined the band "was a challenge." He added: "[Patton] explained it to me that the songs are like reading a comic book. In one box, you have dialogue, but then you have a lot of little action moments going on. So each box is a song. When I received the cassette, because back then we received demos in cassette form, I listened to it, and I was like, 'I need to sit and transcribe this.' I've never had any formal music education, so I had to decipher what was going on on this album, and it moved so quickly that I knew I needed some reference, some notes. I remember buying a music notation book, and I remember having to write everything down. The entire cassette, all of the songs. And I showed it to Patton, and he was like 'What the fuck? You did this?' I said, 'Yeah.' He said, 'This is amazing!'"
He continued: "It was challenging. I remember, there was this one little section, and I was overthinking it, is what it was. And that happens to musicians and drummers. It's really easy, but you overthink it, and you can't do it for some reason. You can't get the right time. And it was only three hits in this tiny little half-a-second moment, and I couldn't do it. I was like, 'Damn, Patton. You're gonna have to record this.' And it was super easy, and after time went on and we started playing the song live, I was beating myself up for it. I couldn't believe it, I was like 'This part is so easy. Why couldn't I get it then?' But man, it was challenging, and I loved every minute of those recording sessions. It taught me how to approach my drum record. A lot of that work helped me, because I was there for all the recording of all the drums and everything for the FANTÔMAS records, so I was able to see [Patton's] process, and it was very educational moment for me."
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