Mr. Bungle – Disco Volante
1995 – Plain Recordings
Mr. Bungle released three official albums, this one sitting in the middle. I’ve always thought about the progression between the albums, the first being brash with the band throwing in everything they could think of, and the last being more refined in a sound. This second album finds the band progressing to their final sonic destination, but retaining some of the insanity involved in the first record. In some ways it is more focused, but in others it ventures into more experimental territory. “Carry Stress in the Jaw” is a mixture of free jazz and metal…seriously…and it works! “Desert Search for Techno Allah” mixes Middle Eastern music with dance music. On top of all the mixing of genres, they pump out a tune like “The Bends” that is some of the scariest music I’ve ever heard recorded, listen to that in a dark room and you will be trembling. The musicianship here is crazy and they are so tight. If this kind of music was sloppy at all, it would be terrible, but Mr. Bungle makes it super interesting and fun. If you’ve never listened to them, I would probably suggest checking out the third album, California, before you listen to this one. I personally love Disco Volante but realize it may not be for everyone. The album title is named after a yacht in a James Bond movie and means “Flying Saucer” in Italian. I just learned that and I’m not sure it is helping me understand the album anymore, but it is interesting. I feel like I will still be finding nuances throughout this LP for years to come, which is, to me, the fun of listening to music!