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The 25 Most Important Metal Bands of the ’90s, #4: Faith No More

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The ’90s: they were the bomb! That’s why MetalSucks will spend the month of March (and the first week of April) giving snaps to the decade that was all that and a bag of chips by counting down The 25 Most Important Metal Bands of the ’90s. These aren’t bands that necessarily formed in the ’90s, nor are they bands that would turn out to be influential somewhere down the road; these are bands that a) were doing their best work in the ’90s, and b) amassed a devout following during the ’90s. These are the bands that we feel truly defined the decade for extreme music. These are the bands that we feel truly defined the decade for yo mama.

If Faith No More’s sole contribution to music had been pioneering rap metal, they would still be worthy of inclusion on this list. Don’t blame them for what would happen later; the fact that so many shitty bands (with some exceptions) followed them over the course of the next decade-plus only underscores how revolutionary their style was.

If Faith No More had only ever amounted to a bunch of art rock weirdos playing metal for a small cadre of die-hards, they would’ve appeared here on artistic merit alone. That they became international superstars (by metal standards) is the icing on the cake.

If Mike Patton’s versatile, one-of-a-kind vocal style was the only thing that made Faith No More stand apart from the pack, they’d absolutely be worthy of conclusion here. Instead, all of their members are metal household names.

If Faith No More’s sole contribution to music had been their smash hit “Epic” — which appeared on 1989’s The Real Thing, but endured as a radio hit through the early part of the ’90s — they still would’ve made the list.

If Faith No More’s 1992 release Angel Dust — an abso-fucking-lutely perfect record, start to finish — was the only work of note they ever released, there’s no doubt they would’ve appeared here. Watching the below performance of “Caffeine” still gives me goosebumps.

If that album’s followups — King For a Day (1995) and Album of the Year (1997) — had completely sucked, they still would’ve appeared on this list. Good thing those albums both kicked fucking ass and became classics, too, despite the departure of guitarist Jim Martin.

In short: there’s no way this list was ever going to exist without Faith No More, and there’s no way this list was ever going to exist without Faith No More being very high up on it. They were, without doubt, one of the most important, influential and enduring bands of the ’90s. We’ll love them forever.

THE LIST SO FAR
#25: Morbid Angel
#24: Melvins

#23: Meshuggah
#22: Emperor

#21: Cave In
#20: Botch
#19: Cradle of Filth
#18: Sepultura
#17: Napalm Death

#16: Rage Against the Machine
#15: Type O Negative

#14: Dream Theater
#13: Alice in Chains
#12: Nine Inch Nails
#11: Carcass
#10: Death
#9: Deftones
#8: Cannibal Corpse
#7: Fear Factory
#6: Metallica
#5: Tool

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