Getting odd with Tomahawk’s ‘Oddfellows’

By Leo Gomon
Western Sun staff writer

Mike Patton is probably better known for his time with the alternative, avant-garde metal outfit “Faith No More” that struck gold in the early nineties with hits like “Epic” and “Falling to Pieces”, but he has been plenty busy with lesser known musical projects for the better part of the last 25 years.

The latest of which, “Oddfellows” by Tomahawk, is a blend of eclectic, quirky, progressive songs that don’t really seem to fit a defined genre.

Tomahawk was created with Mike Patton and some members of Mr. Bungle, one of his other bands, in 2000. “Oddfellows” marks a six-year hiatus since their third release in 2007, the longest time in between recordings, but for good reason.

Opening with the title track, “Oddfellows” is a strange, drone like progression that hypnotizes from the beginning. Followed by lead single “Stone Letter” is a more traditional verse-chorus-verse pop format with a nice hook to keep you listening.

“South Paw”, “Waratorium” and “Rise Up Dirty Waters” drift from punk to experimental to grunge but never in forced manner.

“Oddfellows” is a small sample size of the diverse musical abilities of Mike Patton and his ambitions as a vocalist. The man does it all; Italian opera, electronic music, hip-hop, jazz, alternative post-rock, all in a unique fashion that is massively underappreciated.
“Oddfellows” may not be the best album he has ever released, but it is a strong collection of tunes by a band with no real identity, just strange guys playing strange music.

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