Last Night: Faith No More at the Warfield

Faith No More 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010 
The Warfield

Better than: The best reunion show you've ever seen. And free beer.


Mike Patton has a twisted sense of humor.


This is, after all, the man who once turned down an offer to join INXS following Michael Hutchence's alleged suicide and mocked the late singer on Australian radio during National Suicide Awareness Week. (Hutchence's parents were listening.) More recently, during a February show in Auckland, New Zealand, he led the newly-reformed Faith No More in a tribute to local heroes Crowded House by covering their signature hit, “Don't Dream It's Over”… then played the song repeatedly until the crowd begged him to stop.


So nobody should have been surprised that Tuesday night's show at the Warfield, the second evening of a three-night stand, was hosted by fearless funnyman Neil Hamburger. The comedian seemed to delight in antagonizing the sold-out crowd, angrily tossing a drink on one audience member and calling another a “pig fuck.” Fans also should not have been surprised that, after a searing set by ex-Dead Kennedys frontman Jello Biafra, who wore a BART Police t-shirt and peppered “California Über Alles” with pointed criticism of Arnold Schwarzenegger, the increasingly impatient crowd was then treated to a performance by the Barbary Coast Cloggers, an all-male step-dancing troupe ready for a old-fashioned hoedown.


By the time Patton wandered onto the stage, sporting a shimmering gray suit and a slicked-back 'do that recalled a youngish Orson Welles, the crowd, packed together sardine-style and more than adequately lubed, was bellowing for the main event. With that, the famously eccentric singer, backed by once-and-again bandmates Roddy Bottum (keyboards), Billy Gould (bass), Mike Bordin (drums) and Jon Hudson (guitar), launched into a slow-building rendition of the theme from Midnight Cowboy, from 1992's Angel Dust, and the reunion fans have been cautiously anticipating for 12 years commenced in earnest.   


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