Faith No More Crush New York City’s Webster Hall, Proving They’re Back ‘From the Dead’
For a band that released its first full-length 30 years ago -- and has been enjoying international acclaim for the better part of those three decades, even in the midst of a frontman change -- Faith No More are acting like they've still got something to prove. Taking over New York City's Webster Hall for a two-night run, Faith No More kicked things off last night (May 13) with a staggering 90-minute performance that covered their storied career and highlighted their seemingly never-ending future.
The sold-out venue was packed to the brim with anxious fans who were all unified in their anticipation for Faith No More's first show in New York City since a couple of one-offs in July 2010. As soon as Mike Patton, Mike Bordin, Billy Gould, Roddy Bottum and Jon Hudson took the stage, the anticipatory buzz was replaced with a frenetic excitement that was matched -- and at times, surpassed -- by the band's onstage presence.
After an explosive performance of the first single from their new LP, Sol Invictus, "Motherf---er," and an even more charged "Land of Sunshine," Patton looked to the crowd, gave a salute, and simply said, "New York. What it is." Whether it was Patton calling out a "hipster" in the balcony or Bottum telling the fans that they "look beautiful," that sort of dry humor and succinct conversation was strewn throughout the night's set.
With a band like Faith No More, it's easy to hold them in high, godlike regard, but Patton and company's relaxed demeanor with each other and with the crowd was indicative of their journey's current location: They're happy and they seem to be enjoying every single second of their career in 2015. That's not to say they're comfortable or complacent; the energetic gig felt representative of something much bigger, that Faith No More are far from calling it a day and they (hopefully) have big plans for their future.
Regardless of what that future might hold, though, the fact is this: Sol Invictus is a significant statement (and return) for the band, and the live renditions of the new songs hold just as much weight with fans as favorites like "Epic" and "Surprise! You're Dead."
Few rock bands can ebb and flow throughout an hour-and-a-half set laced with heavy metal, alternative rock, "west coast hippie s---" (that's how Patton described the final song of the night, "From the Dead") and a Burt Bacharach cover, but Faith No More did it with ease ... we only hope that this is just the beginning of the next chapter for one of the most meaningful and genre-bending bands of our -- or any -- generation.
Faith No More -- Setlist, May 13, 2015
"Land of Sunshine"
"Sunny Side Up"
"Surprise! You're Dead!"
"Last Cup of Sorrow"
"The Gentle Art of Making Enemies"
"King for a Day"
"Ashes to Ashes"
"As the Worm Turns"
"This Guy's in Love With You" (Burt Bacharach cover)
"From the Dead"