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A late 80s gem - 84%

CrowTRobot, January 10th, 2008

Has it really been 20 years since this album debuted? In any case, whether it truly belongs on a Metal site is an issue for debate, though its quality is most certainly not. When you throw on "Introduce Yourself", good feelings are evoked even though the musical content isn't overly saccharine or poppy. Faith No More as a whole had come together as a musical unit, establishing a great platform for Chuck Mosley's unique vocal and lyrical approach. This album is certainly miles beyond the debut (a great, bizarre album in its own right), and doesn't reek of " the 80s", an unfortunate symptom that plagues countless scores of releases from the hallowed decade.

"Introduce Yourself" offers a highly palatable combination of hard rocking numbers, easier listening landscapes, and a bit of funk-injected footwork in just the right amounts. Sure, others have pointed to Jim Martin's guitar as the preeminent "Metal" force within the group, but you'll never confuse this with a bay area thrash album. Even when Chuck switches to his shouting/yelling mode, he never comes off as abrasive or harsh for its own sake. There's a certain goofy charm that accompanies him in every verse and chorus, and I haven't heard anything quite like it to this day. The bass consists of fluid pops, thumps, grooves and holds the rhythm section together while still driving the songs. Say what you will about Mike Bordin's drumming, but he pretty much perfected his low key approach to skin-work by this album's release. Smooth fills and dynamics characterize each song. The otherworldly keys hover above the racket, often times pleasantly creeping in and enhancing a section ten-fold. Fortunately, nothing ever sounds slapped together on this release.

Highlights include "Anne's Song", a strange, mid-paced detour into the world of partying and uplifting messages. Martin's abrupt guitar lick halfway through doesn't seem like it would work on paper, but it gels seamlessly with the song. The video is almost as bizarre, and highly recommended. "We Care a Lot" gets a sweet face lift from the debut, with more guitar flourishes and a much cleaner sound to the vocals, not to mention better lyrics. "RN'R" is a bit faster than the other tracks, and is the perfect follow up to "We Care a Lot". "The Crab Song" starts off quiet and brooding, but erupts into a high energy exercise before too long. The remaining tracks range from above average to great. Give "Introduce Yourself" a chance, and I guarantee you'll spin it over and over.