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31 DAYS OF FAITH NO MORE: “THE LAST TO KNOW”

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Spurred by a lazy crossword clue in The Onion (36 down, four letters: “Faith No More’s only hit”), MetalSucks contributor Anso DF dedicates every single day in August to celebration and exploration of the San Francisco alt-metal greats. Here we prove that history’s greatest band landed more than one commercial hit (crossword answer: “Epic” natch), we revel in FNM’s embarrassing wealth of winning album tracks (themselves often fit for chart topping), and we dip into the staggering best of the b-sides (ditto). Along the way, we survey the context of FNM’s big break (amid similarly seminal acts Jane’s Addiction, Nine Inch Nails, and Ween) to the post-Nevermind, panic-based music commerce in which the brilliantly versatile, fearless powerhouse band operated until their 1998 demise. It’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it.

Song “The Last To Know”

Written by Patton (L); Gould, Patton, Bordin (M)

Released 1995

Appears on King For A Day, Fool For A Lifetime album

Produced by Andy Wallace

Guitars by Trey Spruance (Secret Chiefs 3, Mr. Bungle)

Key lyric “Where it grows on trees/But never blooms/Where it hurts the least for whoever/Saw it first.”

Single? No.

The climate By the second-last song on King For A Day, Faith No More has spazzed, gurgled, and burst veins to surpass the RDA; “Last” commences the two-track process of closure and departure so listeners might exhale after weathering King‘s pitched battle with sanity. It’s also FNM’s most bittersweet moment — topping “Underwater Love” and “A Small Victory” — and the band’s most baldly human, unblustery lyric, one that cements the sense that the personal is displacing the universal in FNM music. In close-up, “Last” is a relationship song, a magnanimous admission that its author is damaged goods, a patient and smiling farewell. I get waaay verklempt. Sniff.

Awesome song elevated to supra-awesomeness by the final act guitar solo passage (at 3:03). The FNM veterans hoist Spruance to their shoulders here, and the new guy responds with two fistfuls of roman candles and a sparkly Macho Man duster. Behold the sound of Earth’s greatest band.

Didja know? There exists a super-cool 7 x 7″ collector’s box edition of King For A Day that scrambles its 14 songs among individual interviews and b-sides (incl. “I Wanna Fuck Myself”). Incidentally, I chose this moment to remind you of my approaching birthday. Are these facts connected? You decide!

–ADF

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METALSUCKS’ 31 DAYS OF FAITH NO MORE

16 “The Last To Know”

15 “The Real Thing” (read)

14 “Malpractice” (read)

13 ”Ugly In The Morning” (read)

12 “The Cowboy Song” (read)

11 “Helpless” (read)

10 “Smaller And Smaller” (read)

9 “Digging The Grave” (read)

“From Out Of Nowhere” (read)

“Last Cup Of Sorrow” (read)

6 “The Gentle Art Of Making Enemies” (read)

“Caffeine” (read)

“Falling To Pieces” (read)

“Stripsearch” (read)

2 ”Ricochet” (read)

1 ”Land Of Sunshine” (read)

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