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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Mike Patton
Mondo Cane
Ipecac

Rating: 7.5/10 ?


June 2, 2010
Though Mondo Cane is technically Mike Patton's third solo album (and first in 13 years), it's a far cry from and more fun than the microphone-in-hotel-rooms experimentation of Adult Themes for Voice and the "Futurist Cookbook"-inspired Pranzo Oltranzista. Accompanied by not just his band but a 40-piece orchestra and choir, Patton cuts surprisingly loose with an Italian-language(!) disc that finds the insanely prolific vocalist remaking pop standards from said country.

It's not necessarily a first for Patton to pay homage to other composers, a feat he performed with aplomb (and distortion) on Fantomas' The Director's Cut. Yet Mondo Cane is not only more accessible, but marks the first time a Patton release features no original lyrics. Still, the man of a thousand voices does a bang-up job with the source material, whether sounding like Italy's answer to Bobby Darin on opener "Il Cielo In Una Stanza," hamming it up on the furious big-band swing number "Che Notte!," screaming over surf rhythms on the Blackmen's 1960s civil rights tune "Urlo Negro" or setting a somber scene for a spaghetti western in Luigi Tenco's "Quello Che Conta."

In a press statement, Patton said, "My purpose in revisiting these pieces is not to relive the past, not for nostalgia, but more to illustrate through modern and adventurous interpretation exactly how vital and important this music still is." Any fan of the man's winding discography, specifically Mr. Bungle's Disco Volante, will know that his "adventurous interpretations" of this vein began years ago. It's only now though that Patton's fully manifested his passion project minus the avant-garde overlay--and ironically scoring an unheard-of #2 debut on the Billboard classical chart in the process, possibly the strangest highlight yet of a strange talent's career.

Reviewed by Kiran Aditham
When not contributing to LAS and other music/film publications, Kiran Aditham toils away during the day in Manhattan as a reporter for an advertising magazine…though he’d rather not say which one.

See other reviews by Kiran Aditham

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