buttonFantomas with Zu @ Shibuya Club Quattro (5th Sept. '05)

A Mind Is An Awesome Thing To Blow

      There was a popular anti-drug ad several years ago that showed an egg in its shell and then the same egg being fried. The commercial said "This is your brain" (cue egg in shell) followed by "This is your brain on drugs" (cut to a shot of the egg frying in a pan) before wrapping up with "Any questions?"

      A similar approach could be used in a commercial for Fantomas. It could start off with a twenty-year-old dude holding an egg as a voice booms "This is your brain." It would then show the guy cracking the egg into a pan and whipping it into a frenzy with a big smile on his face and his eyes glazed over. At which point the voiceover would proclaim "This is your brain after being skull fucked by Fantomas. Want to know where to buy tickets?"

      If that doesn't get kids out to catch a show, then frankly I don't know what will. "Skull fucked" might seem a little harsh to various parents' group and decency committees, but after witnessing Fantomas live, it is the only term that adequately sums up the vast array of sonic mayhem the band uses to mess with listeners' minds.
      Zu was given the challenging task of getting the near-packed house ready for Fantomas. The Italian trio didn't disappoint as they tore through what they refer to on their web site as "soul music". Comprised of a drummer, bass player, and saxophonist, the band mixed free jazz and warped math metal to create completely off the wall, funky works of art. When not drumming, the very engaging Jacopo Battaglia chatted up the mixed crowd in English, explaining about the songs and where they came from.


During an interlude early in the show he told everyone that the next track was going to be a samba song. He then explained that it wasn't really a true samba song as the band was going to add a little bit of Norwegian metal to it, as saxophonist Luca Mai chimed in with one of the best metal growls I've heard in a long time.
      Walking out on stage just after 8 p.m., Fantomas instantly began teasing, taunting, twisting, and tantalizing the ears and heads of spectators. Featuring Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo, Melvins guitarist Buzz Osbourne, Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn, and Mike Patton, to say that Fantomas are packing some serious frickin' firepower is one hell of an understatement.

      As his voice switched styles, his bandmates would often change the pace of the musical madness being created as well. Working their way through selections from all four of their releases, the quartet came pretty damn close to touching on every major genre as they played their dense, schizophrenic opuses. Songs would travel at menacing speeds before slowing down to a spacey crawl to allow evil sound clips and some of the bonks and whistles that adorn their latest work, Suspended Animation, to be added to the demented jumble of brilliant noise.
      The cheers that erupted every time Patton grabbed one of his four mics made it clear who the star of the show was. Positioned behind a table filled with electronic goodies, the prolific frontman was constantly on the move during the fantastic 50 minute set. When not turning various knobs or toying with his keyboards, pedals, and vocal enhancers, he played the role of conductor, raising his arms to lead his bandmates through each mind-boggling composition. Patton's vocal versatility was amazing. The former Faith No More singer whispered lyrics with a deranged look in his eyes, sang in a soaring operatic voice, grunted out twisted gibberish, and leaned back to unleash blistering hardcore screams all within the span of a few minutes.

      The show ended with Patton saying "Arigatou" and introducing the band before walking off stage. Returning a few moments later, Fantomas wrapped things up with one last awesome, two minute blast before packing it in. The awe-struck audience roared their approval and headed for the exit with dazed grins, trying to fully grasp the magnitude of the insanely wonderful display they had just seen.

photos by hanasan
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photos : Zu | Fantomas

buttonmag files : Fantomas

buttonphoto report : (05/09/06 @ Shibuya Club Quattro) : photos by saya38
buttonA Mind Is An Awesome Thing To Blow : (05/09/05 @ Shibuya Club Quattro) : review by shawn, photos by hanasan
buttonphoto report : (05/09/05 @ Shibuya Club Quattro) : photos by hanasan

The official site

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The latest album


"Suspended Animation"
(US import / US import / 国内盤)

previous works

The official site





(Zu + Eugene Chadbourne )

previous works

Check the albums?



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buttonAll The Young Dudes : Jude (10th Jun. @ Yokohama Blitz)
buttonThe Future's So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades : Date Course Pentagon Royal Garden (6th Jun. @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
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buttonInterview : Insanely Brilliant : Les Savy Fav (30th Apr.)
buttonOrganized Chaos : Shibusa Shirazu (17th Apr. @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonSocially Aware And Ready To Party : Asian Dub Foundation w/African Head Charge (10th Apr. @ Shibuya AX)
buttonNice And Simple : Jimmy Eat World (4th Apr. @ Shibuya O-East)
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buttonGroove Is In The Heart : Tabla Kwaiesa (6th Mar. @ Yokohama Silk Road Buto-Kan)
buttonInterview : Constantly Evolving : 90 Day Men (13th Mar)
buttonIt's Party Time! : The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, The Benevento/Russo Duo (28th Feb @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonWeekly Service : The Chemical Brothers (12th Feb @ Shibuya AX)
buttonTattoos and a Whole Lotta Hair : EXTREME THE DOJO Vol.12 feat. Every time I Die, As I Lay Dying and Shadows Fall (7th Feb @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonGeography At Its Best : ISIS (5th Feb @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonTo The Extreme : The Shins (31st Jan @ Harajuku Astro Hall)
buttonCD review : "Panopticon" : Isis (27th Jan)
buttonWinter Be Damned : Ash (17th Jan @ Shibuya AX)
buttonInterview : Peaceful, But Far From Quiet : Mono (20th Jan)
buttonCD review : "The Nein" : The Nein (13th Jan)


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buttonMusic Soothes the Savage Beast : eastern youth (20th Dec @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonAnd to all A Good Night : Shonen Knife (19th Dec @ Daikanyama Unit)
buttonExciting Music for Exciting People : illreme (6th Dec @ Shibuya Club Quattro)
buttonExpansive Rhythms : Tabla Kwaiesa (4th Dec @ Cozmo's Cafe and Bar)
buttonIt's In Their Hands Now : Franz Ferdinand (29th Nov @ Shibuya AX)
buttonLights, Camera, Action : Brahman (15th Nov @ Ebisu Liquidroom)
buttonMostly Business : The Stills (8th Nov @ Ebisu Liquidroom)
buttonScare The Rock Right Outta Ya : Halloween Ball 2004 feat . The 5,6,7,8's, Gasoline, The Woggles (30th Oct @ Shiomkitazawa Shelter)
buttonThree More, Two More, and Take it to the Left : Hawaiian6/ Idol Punch (11th Oct @ Shinjuku Loft)
buttonBusting Eardrums : Mogwai (5th Oct @ Ebisu Liquidroom AX )
buttonMedical Breakthrough : The Most Notorious Vol. 18 feat. Melt Banana and K.K. Null (25th Sept @ Shimokitazawa Shelter )
buttonGrey Skies Are Going To Clear Up... : HUSKING BEE (5th Sept @ Shibuya AX )
buttonno title : V∞REDOMS (8th Aug @ Ebisu Liquidroom )
buttonCD review : Andre Ethier With Christopher Sandes : Andre Ethier

無断転載を禁じます。The copyright of the article belongs to Shawn Despres and the same of the photos belongs to Koichi "hanasan" Hanafusa (The Voice Of Silence). They may not be reproduced in any form whatsoever.counter
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