Any Mike Patton project since the golden years of Faith No More deserves a relative amount of apprehension, given two undeniable truths. First, Patton will never see another band of his reach the heights of FNM (and he likely doesn’t care), and second, it will be eccentric. Dead Cross, the latest project from the man behind the mic, dutifully hits both marks.
Running the gamut from thrash to punk, and a ton of funky shades of strange in between, Dead Cross are nothing short of inventive on their eponymous debut. Joining Patton are Dave Lombardo, Justin Pearson, and Michael Crain, all of whom elevate the quality of the performance beyond that which is typically expected from a side-project. Lombardo (formerly of Slayer) is a standout, driving each composition with his robust back-beat. Unfortunately, though, the album trips over its own outlandishness, with Patton’s irreverent lyricism sounding more kitsch than it is creative, including the spastic “Obedience School” and the tongue-twisting “Divine Filth.”
Dead Cross is an interesting listen deserving of at least a spin or two. It is a weird and wacky world with a schizo ringleader who knows how to corral the freaks for a fun ride.
Dead Cross is out now on Ipecac Recordings. Buy it here!