Eighteen long years since the release of Faith No More's last album, the iconoclastic alt-metal group will release Sol Invictus on May 19th, via their own label, Reclamation. Bassist Bill Gould produced the 10-song record in the group's "Estudios Koolarrow" studio, while frontman Mike Patton recorded his vocals at Vulcan Studios, both in Oakland, California. The track list is below.
In a statement the band explained that the seeds of the new album began with a new tune it first played in 2011 in Buenos Aires. "When we debuted our new song 'Matador,' we just told them it was a cover song, and they still went crazy," Gould said.
"'Matador' was the first idea that Billy brought to the rest of us, and was in a sense a new beginning," keyboardist Roddy Boddum said.
"Hypnotic and gothic, we're coming back to where we were with our first album," the bassist offered, citing Siouxsie and the Banshees and Roxy Music as early influences. "Then Patton's being Patton, crooning, screaming, with a bit of soul underneath it all. We've always taken strange influences and smashed them together."
Last November, the band put out its first song in nearly as many years, "Motherfucker," as a limited-edition Black Friday single. Then, on the day of its release, they gave the tune its live debut during an impromptu concert — complete with masked gimp — at San Francisco's Amoeba Records, along with another new track, "Superhero." The latter song will come out officially as a studio recording, first as a seven-inch single on March 17th then digitally on March 31st.
"When we split up, we explored what we could do on our own," the bassist and producer said in a statement. "During that time, we each developed what was a natural part of ourselves. Now, coming back, we have a wider perspective so we can do things we didn't even think of back in the day. If we were to decide to do country-western music, it would still sound like a Faith No More album. Together we have a strong collective identity, and when we work together it makes its own animal."
The release of the new song will coincide with the band's first North American tour since 2010. The month-long, sold-out trek will kick off April 15th in Vancouver and making its way all over the continent to Philly for a May 15th finale. The group has promised on Twitter that this run will not be the only U.S. tour dates this year.
"I think what we're doing reflects where we've gone since we made our last record as Faith No More," Gould told Rolling Stone this past September. "I think this kicks things up a notch. And I think there's parts that are very powerful and there's parts that have a lot of 'space.' Everything we do, with our chemistry, the way we play; it's always going to sound like us. It's just what we do, that makes us feel good. Hopefully it doesn't sound like a bunch of 50-year-old men..." He then laughed and added, "which we are."
Sol Invictus Track List:
1. "Sol Invictus"
3. "Sunny Side Up"
4. "Separation Anxiety"
5. "Cone of Shame"
6. "Rise of the Fall"
7. "Black Friday"
10. "From the Dead"