Back in the late 80s, FAITH NO MORE had this little song called "Epic". It garnered them loads of attention from the mainstream critics and fans alike. Hell, they mixed Rap, Funk and Metal together to create an excellent formula. Yet they did not become the huge success that everyone predicted. Why? Because they followed up "The Real Thing" with "Angel Dust". "Angel Dust" basically took everything from "The Real Thing".....and threw it out the window! It appears that FAITH NO MORE wrote a completely different album for themselves, not the fans and critics who jumped on the "Epic" bandwagon. This is a quality rarely found in bands these days.
So, what does "Angel Dust" offer? Well, first off, no rapping. And no whiny braty voice on Mike Patton's part. His voice dropped at least an octave on this release. And his screams and growls are littered throughout. Mike Patton's voice is literally another instrument, at times. Also, the song structures became more complex and hard to follow. In fact they could be considered weird, even a little maniacal at parts. And much much heavier than on the previous release. "Malpractice" still remained one of their heaviest songs the day they decided to call it splits. It was also probably their most complex, with so many layers that it was impossible to play live.
"Angel Dust" may be the strongest moment in FAITH NO MORE's career. It represented a huge middle finger to the mainstream, and to wannabe bandwagon fans. But not only was it a statement, it was some of the best damned music around, being my most frequent listen in the early 90s. (Online February 27, 2003)