Horror Never Sounded So Sweet
The man of a million bands Mike Patton is back with Fantomas and the ultra-brave, amazingly long Delirium Cordia. This is not an album for fans looking for melody, or catchy tunes. Make no mistake; on this 74 minute album all the music is on one track. Delirium Cordia is one gigantic creepy ambient composition. Subtitled “Surgical Sound Specimens From the Museum of Skin” the album features the band’s signature supergroup lineup of Patton, Buzz Osbourne of the Melvins, Trevor Dunn of Mr. Bungle and Dave Lombardo of Slayer. Much akin to a horror movie, the music boasts tons of dissonance and noise. At first listen it bears striking resemblance to dollar store sound effects tapes commonly used on Halloween.
It is, however, far better than that. Delirium Cordia is initially frustrating because one cannot gravitate towards memorable moments or “highlights” that typical albums tend to live or die by. If it is experienced as composer Patton recently commented in many interviews as “background music,” it’s quite magnificent. Instead of focusing on certain instances, they slowly creep out at you. As the minutes tick by, delay ridden cymbals, minor key piano lines, ever down-tuning guitar, pitch rising vocals, filtered drudging basslines and defibrillators with clanging bells offset against doctors voices and a female orgasm interweave elegantly. There’s even a solid few minutes of orchestrated wind. The CD booklet documents with brutal reality and lush photography examples of major surgeries implying, along with the subtitle that Delirium Cordia is the soundtrack to a patient’s surgery. It’s not as exciting as earlier efforts but the group has improved tremendously in making a piece even more challenging of their talents and cohesive than anything done together before.