California – Mr. Bungle (1999)

Album art for California - Mr. Bungle

California – Mr. Bungle

California is the last studio album by Mr. Bungle.  This album was officially released last 13 of July 1999 under the music label of Warner Bros.

It comes with the tradition of the band to experiment with various types of music such as piano ballad, avant-garde, jazz rock, exotica, lounge music, thrash metal, kecak, psychobilly, circus music, surf rock, pop music, folk music, doo-wop, funk, Eastern and Hawaiian music.

It was greatly received by the fans and the different music critics including Pitchfork.

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The Sound of California

Just like the earlier albums of Mr. Bungle, California is difficult to categorise.  It will open your ears to all sorts of music.  It is just so simple to get lost while listening to the album due to the number of things happening in each track.  It is highly recommended to listen to it for several times to truly appreciate and enjoy the music and understand it wholly.

Mike Patton is truly untouchable.  That is what most of us will believe after hearing the album.  Mixing a lot of variety such as world music, lounge, funk, rock and pop with strange theatrics, California is considered by many as the magnum opus of Mike Patton with the band.  After a short listening, it’s hard to believe that a major music label released this album.  This is not something that anyone would consider for commercial release or that you’d hear on the airwaves.  And that is what makes this album truly exciting, unique and amazing.

The Songs of California

However, it will truly be unbefitting if we will just place the entire complement to Patton.  Trevor Dunn is a master bassist who wrote the track Retrovertigo which is one of the shining moments of California.  It is an elegant strange song that reaches its climax to an explosive dramatic ending.  The production of this track is unmatched.

Trey Spruance who is renowned for his amazing guitar work is the co-writer of the Pink Cigarette which is another notable song on the album.  This is really a heart-whelming ballad song which is amplified by the emotional and smooth voice of Patton that can crack even the hardest stone, it is just brilliant.  It incorporates the elements of the Italian music with the signature yodeling style of the country music which makes it one of the highlights of California.

California ended with the single ‘Goodbye Sober Day’ that exposes the adventurous side of Mr. Bungle who went on a trip of several music genres coming from several parts of the world but still manages to stay consistent and coherent. This album has managed to extract the successful elements of the first two albums while adding flow and catchiness.  This is not an easy feat considering that there are enormous types of music present in the album.  Eyvind Kang joins Mr. Bungle

This album has managed to extract the successful element of the first two albums while adding flow and catchiness.  This is not an easy feat considering that there are enormous types of music present in the album but Mr. Bungle was able to accomplish that flawlessly.

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