FAXED HEAD — Uncomfortable But Free

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FAXED HEAD - Uncomfortable But Free cover
4.50 | 1 rating | 1 review
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Boxset / Compilation · 1995

Tracklist

1. The Colors of Coalinga (2:26)
2. Violence Gone (1:50)
3. Wireless Rattle (2:24)
4. Pantera Lines (3:05)
5. Wyoming Hair (3:42)
6. Show Pride in Coalinga (1:57)
7. Rotten Cakes (3:16)
8. The Astronaut (3:37)
9. Big Ol' Cheese (2:00)
10. Tired (2:29)
11. Spanish Rice (2:17)
12. Der Michelint (3:14)
13. McPatrick's Lament (0:32)
14. Element of Life (2:40)
15. January's Here (1:43)
16. Time to Retire (2:39)
17. Pirelli Deli (2:17)
18. Bay's Ball (0:51)
19. New One's (0:27)

Total Time 43:26

Line-up/Musicians

- McPatrick Head [Neil Hamburger] / vocals
- Neck Head [Trey Spruance] / guitar
- Jigsaw Puzzle Head / bass
- LaBrea Tar Pits Head / drums (tracks: 1 to 6, 8, 10 to 12, 16, 17)
- Washington DC Head / drums (tracks: 7, 9, 13 to 15)
- Fifth Head / electronics (tracks: 2 to 5, 10 to 12, 16, 17)

About this release

Amarillo Records ACM-596

Thanks to triceratopsoil for the addition

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FAXED HEAD UNCOMFORTABLE BUT FREE reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

siLLy puPPy
When it comes to anything Mr Bungle related you are pretty much assured that it will be both avant-garde in nature and always friggin weird as hell, however some of these projects are much weirder than the others. The Bunglers released their first album in 1991 after the stunning success of Faith No More with lead singer Mike Patton joining the team. Fatih No More became huge and Mr Bungle became an instant cult hit for its genre skipping fusion of sophisticated technicalities in perfect marriage with adolescent potty mouth humor. The world has never been the same and due to the fact that Mr Bungle was signed to the major record label Warner Bros., many have also followed the breadcrumbs into many of these offshoot projects that continue to spawn even in the modern times.

While the universe of Bungle related acts is unfathomably large, the first of these bizarre musical entities was the product of guitarist Trey Spruance and no i’m not talking about his critically acclaimed Secret Chiefs 3 project but rather something much more disturbing, something so wickedly wild and bizarre the only genre tag i can give it is insanty-core! The band FAXED HEAD was so far removed from reality and so over the top in almost every possible way that it is one of those bands that has to be heard to be believed and while most will run away screaming for their mommy in utter horror, a few of us who were dropped on our heads as babies actually dig this shit!

First of all you have to be in on the joke to even remotely understand this psychotic concoction of twisted death metal, frenetic electronic experiments gone wild and avant-garde anguish dished out in mutilated madness. The whole premise of this band existing is a fictitious story that a bunch of glue-sniffing teenagers from Coalinga, CA made a suicide pact that went terribly wrong. The members that go by the McPatrick Head [Gregg Turkington] (vocals), Neck Head [Trey Spruance] (guitar), Jigsaw Puzzle Head [Brandan Kearney] (bass), LaBrea Tar Pits Head [Phil Franklin, aka Washington DC Head] (drums), Fifth Head [James Goode] (electronics), Graph Head (bass) underwent physical reconstruction and mental therapy at the Coalinga Youth Hospice before forming FAXED HEAD.

While Bungle was dazzling the world throughout the 90s with its Zappa infused prog / metal / experimental whatever trilogy of albums, FAXED HEAD lurked deep in the underground attracting only the seekers of the amazingly bizarre and twisted that emerged within the context of the metal music universe. In the beginning FAXED HEAD only released a series of EPs and singles as 7” vinyl releases as well as a split with Breathilizor and a couple appearances on various artists compilations that focused on noisy weird experimental acts. In 1995 the group compiled all the tracks released haphazardly and compiled them onto this one CD titled UNCOMFORTABLE BUT FREE on Amarillo Records. This CD included every track the band had released up to this point with the sole exception of “Bone Cracks” which appeared on the 1994 split with Breahtizor on Eerie Materials Records but for some reason was not included here. This compilation also added a couple unreleased tracks: "Wyoming Hair" and "The Astronaut."

The music from FAXED HEAD’s early years is about as anarchic and chaotic of a freak show as you could possible imagine. This extreme maelstrom of sonic terror consisted of a unique mix of death metal fury, Japanese influenced electronic noise, irritating feedback and high pitched noises that often startle the senses along with bizarre tape recorder sounds freaking the fuck out. These guys really nailed what could be called retardation-core as it really does sound like a bunch of brain dead losers whose perception of music has completely derailed from the world of the sane. Every single aspect about the music on early FAXED HEAD songs are designed to shock and irritate above and beyond the call of duty. However despite this, there are still plenty of catchy hooks, head banging excellence and most of all gut busting humor!

The joke is carried out throughout the lyrics which although mostly undecipherable behind obnoxious grunts, screams and growls are featured in the liner notes with the never-ending hilariousness such as “"I'm never going to leave Coalinga/I love it here; it is my home/Also, I cannot get up/Or my bones will puncture through my skin!” The metal takes on death metal clothing only dressed up in mathcore unpredictability. While some tracks like “Wyoming Hair” actually sound like a real song with a steady beat and melodic riff, many tracks are nothing more than extreme caustic noise such as “Pirelli Deli.” My two faves of this zaniness has to be the combo pack of “The Colors Of Coalinga” and “Show Pride In Coalinga,” the former a lo-fi freeform explosive metal performance of angularity (this could be called metal-in-opposition for sure!) and the latter a ridiculous military marchcore session that mixes high school march music with grindcore.

This is really some of the most disturbing music you can EVER subject yourself to however there is something sadistically beautiful about it and after many years of finding myself returning to this stuff on occasion, it has really gotten under my skin as utterly ingenious as to how this band effectively forged a completely new reality in some parallel universe to craft some of the most wickedly insane humor music since Frank Zappa himself! In effect there is no rhyme or reason to this. Noisy formless metal sections can turn into catchy melodic passages and then frantic electronic noise and avant-garde chaos takes over. While all of the following EPs and singles are represented, they are all mixed up in a way that this album comes across as one huge mind fuck that is only obvious these were different releases with a bit of inquisitive research. I’m not kidding that when i say that Mr Bungle is closer to Barbara Streisand than this chaotic mess that shows you how very very WEIRD this is! There are however moments on Bungle albums where some of these chaotic sound effects can be heard. This is basically the unadulterated concentrated form. Two more actual albums followed.

The origin of the tracks on UNCOMFORTABLE BUT FREE

- Faxed Head 7" - Stomach Ache Records 1992: "Element Of Life," "January's Here," "Rotten Cakes," "McPatrick's Lament," "Big Ol' Cheese," "Bay's Ball/New One's"

- Necrogenometry 7" - Amarillo 1993: "Pantera Lines," "Violence Gone," "Spanish Rice"

- Show Pride In Coalinga 7" - Amarillo 1993: "Show Pride In Coalinga," "The Colors Of Coalinga"

- Tire 7" - LaBrea 1994: "Der Michelint," "Tired," "Time To Retire," "Pirelli Deli”

- Previously Unreleased - "Wyoming Hair" and "The Astronaut.”

- America The Beautiful (various artists compilation) - "Wireless Rattle"

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