Fantômas The Director's Cut

The uber-creative and criminally insane genius that is Mike Patton shows no signs of letting up on his audio terrorism assaults. And thank God, because someone needs to continue fighting the mainstream's insidious grip on today's youth. In between his label, Ipecac, his bands, Mr. Bungle, Peeping Tom and his new "rock" act, Tomahawk (featuring members of Helmet and the Jesus Lizard) not to mention endless appearances and touring, Patton has reunited with the Melvins' Buzz Osborne, Mr. Bungle's Trevor Dunn and drum deity Dave Lombardo to release another groundbreakingly brilliant Fantomas album. Building on the same sonic upheavals as their debut, Amenaza al Mundo, which blended stop-start noise with death metal's brutality, a jump-cut attention span, ambient expulsions, free form eccentricities and Mike's ability to mimic and create limitless sounds without ever uttering a discernible word, The Director's Cut marks dramatic new territory for Fantomas. It features Fantomas interpreting 16 movie themes, which while still subjected to the Fantomas musical blender aesthetic, are more linear, featuring melody and hooks and, the ultimate affront to Fantomas purists, actual singing. Highlights of this superb disc include "The Godfather," which entwines snatches of the original score with Fantomas' metallic brevity, "The Golem," which sounds sporadically like Godflesh and vintage Melvins - doom-laden, epic and constantly building. The terrifying, eerie and sombre "Rosemary's Baby," rendered even more disturbing by Patton's imitation of baby noises, toy-style keys and a mother's crooning. "The Omen - Ave Satani" is yet another standout, frantic and epic in its scope, capturing the mania of a black mass, while "Charade" ends on a more restrained, jazz meets vintage Fantomas bent while Mike croons and screams over top. The Director's Cut is an inspired and utterly original sounding piece of musical non-conformity, but one expects nothing less from these four. (Ipecac)