So it looks like I might have to punch myself in the face because for the first time in a while I have to award an average rating to a Mike Patton album. This is his soundtrack to the film of the book (I have heard of neither) and there is a good chance that, when listened to in conjunction with the film, this is a very good soundtrack. And of course that’s all it is, a soundtrack, but you see it’s much more than that. Mike is among the few people in the world of music that make me go all tingly when I get fresh news. I know this is hardly a unique attitude but I’m not ashamed. When people take the piss (people who are thick) out of Patton, I exclude them from my life for the rest of time…seems reasonable to me. I’m not completely infatuated, I accept that Peeping Tom is not as good as it should have been. I also accept that Weird Little Boy is unremittingly dreadful from start to finish and that “Adult Themes For Voice” should be locked away from human ears for eternity (not because its bad but because it terrifies me). But the successes are so many and varied that when he comes up something that most others would be proud of, it seems less than it should be.
My esteemed colleague Ken thinks that this album sounds a little like Patton / Kaada. It has some of the cold, dark and submerged qualities of that fine album but lacks any of the strong melodies or cornucopia of instrumentation. It is a pretty sparse album, moving between variations and refrains of the theme and scary atonal drone stuff, which does (to be fair) make me intrigued to see the film. But as a soundtrack, it simply can’t compete with the all out lunacy of “Crank:High Voltage” or the Catholic histrionics of “A Perfect Place”. It is not fair to say that this is a bad album but without any accompanying visuals it seems to miss the mark a little.