Mr. Bungle is an American experimental rock band formed in Eureka, California in 1985 by Mike Patton, Trey Spruance and Trevor Dunn. It innitially started out as a death metal project while the members were still in highschool, the name of the band being based off a character from 1959's children's educational film Beginning Responsibility: Lunchroom Manners, but has since evolved a lot in style including many genres such as heavy metal, avant-garde jazz, ska, disco, and funk. The band has been well known for the music they've created during their most experimental era which also included things such as unconventional song structures, audio sampling, playing a wide array of instruments and many more.
During the mid to late 80s, Mr Bungle released 4 demo tapes and later released 3 full length studio albums between years 1991 and 1999 under the Warner Bros Records label which they signed up for in 1990. Those three albums being the Mr Bungle Self-titled, Disco Volante and California. They then toured in 1999 and 2000 to support the third album before promptly going into haitus, they lated reunited as a thrash metal band for a series of shows in February of 2020, performing their 1986 demo album The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny in which they returned back to the studio to re-record it as a proffesional album and released it in October of 2020. Since then the band has been present past it's innitial haitus till now.
To say that Mr Bungle's music is influential isn't enough, the band has quite the legacy influecing many bands and muscians, most notably the bands Korn, Avenged Sevenfold, System of a Down and many more. The band's style is just so uniquely Mr Bungle, with each album having such a familiar tone yet unique listening experience to one another. I had only started listening to Mr Bungle this year but the albums especially the self titled and california have grown to be my favourite albums of all time, this is certainly one of those bands you need a second listen to their songs to fully let how banger each tune is sink in.
In this page I will be listening to the entirety of Mr Bungle's Discography from all the studio albums to the demos and giving my thoughts on each of them to the best that I can!
Keep in mind these are all my opinion purely and that if you disagree with what I've said that it's completely fine.
Mr Bungle's Self Titled was the band's debut studio album, released in 1991, August 13th. This album while much more weirder and out there than some of their latter albums and may take a second relisten to fully grasp it, was a really good start for the band helping them gain a cult audience. The album tracks hop and include many different musical genres all even within the same song which I think is what makes this and the band so unique. This is by far my favourite album out of the Mr Bungle discography and was the first one I listened to too!
Track one: "Travolta/Quote Unquote"
The first track of the album! A really really good start for the album, wacky enough to prepare the listener for what's to come for latter tracks but still somewhat tame as to not immediately overwhelm the listener. It really makes you anticipate for what's next to expect in the album! I love the like general rhythmn alongside the first verse and the chorus's.
Track two: "Slowly Growing Death"
This was the second song I went back to relisten when I had first finished listening to the album, it really does stick with you. The guitar is really fucking good and the overall song is so goddamn catchy, especially the like build up to the refrain! I also just really love the lyrics and like the shift in tone throughout the song! The ending of the song while at first suprised me is honestly really camp and kinda just fits tbh.
Track three: "Squeeze Me Macaroni"
This track is truely when things go all over the place and crazy! From the really upbeat and fast points transtitioning into a more slower tone, this song is definitely the most wacky and comedic of the whole track. It's just a really catchy banger that really just screams "Mr Bungle". Also just really love the transition from this to the next track.
Track four: "Carousel"
This is def one of my fav tracks of the album! I love the whole carnival and like evil clown theme, it really fits with the album cover and the qoute unqoute music vid! I really fucking love the part in the song where after the "welcome to my house" part near the end, it just fits so fucking well. Love the overall energy of the song and such yknow how this goes.
Track five: "Egg"
It honestly took me a while to really get used to the song, and when I was planning on relistening it past my first listen I was kinda intimidated especially with it being the longest track in the album, however after relistening to it I do not regret it and wish I did so sooner. This track is so good especially in the beginning, I love how much the tone of the song changes especially the "lalalalala" parts. All this leading up to the chorus at the end and the reversed bridge makes it so unforgetable. I will say it does feel like this song honestly goes on forever/way longer than it should but I honestly just think it's cause of the ending and regardless it all from beginning to end is worth it.
Track six: "Stubb (a Dub)"
This song is by far my favourite song of Mr Bungle's while discography ever, it holds a lot of significance to me honestly from a secret meaning I've taken from the song and it was also the first Mr Bungle song I ever listened to!!! I love the innitial tonal shift from the beginning lyrics/intro and how it all ties back near the end, the overall sound is great especially the piano at the beginning and the fucking beat drop that happens throughout the song, especially near the "this dog has seen better days" AUGHH IT'S SO GOOD this whole track is so fucking good. I also love the reprise of the verse and the intro. This is once again my very favourite song out of the whole album and discography and for a good reason.
Track seven: "My Ass is on Fire"
Another favourite of mine of the album! I love just how like loud and brash it is, the instrumentals and how it all adds and builds up to the "my ass is on fire" lyric/line is soooo fucking good especially the second time it happens. I also love how the ending fits so well with the song and how it transitions directly to the themes of the next track after this. Overall energy of the song till the ending is so energetic and insane, I absolutely love replaying this.
Track eight: "The Girls Of Porn"
This is definitely the most sexual and not safe for work song in the album, right after squeeze me macaroni. I fucking love how absolutely funky and catchy this song is, helped with the vocals during the chorus. I will admit I did kinda grow embarrassed over listening to the really not safe for work part of the song past the first bridge to the point I'd just skip out on it completely but at this point I've kinda gotten used to it, at worst I find some parts of it kinda corny but past that the pre chorus/chorus is so good alongside the outro. Overall if you don't mind much more cruder and explicit work you'd enjoy this.
Track nine: "Love is a Fist"
I will admit, this is one of the only track in the album I don't really have much attachment to at all/is my least replayable song from the album. It's definitely not bad! Just honestly feels a bit lacking and dare I say generic compared to the rest of the tracks. I do like the ending though that pairs with the final track of the album. This track just wasn't really my thing.
Track ten: "Dead Goon"
At first I was really worried about this track kinda not being my thing/ a weak end to such a great album especially due to love is a fist, however my worries were proven wrong same with my worries of relistening to egg. This track is honestly such a catchy and chilling way to end this album which I feel is really perfect. I especially love the first parts of the song and the lyrics/vocals. I just overall love the whole unsettling yet funky feel I get from listening this track, with the almost somber ending being so chilling. It's honestly warmed up to being a really good Mr Bungle song to me and a good end to the Self Titled album.
This album is one if not my favourite album of all time and my fave Mr Bungle album in general, each track (with an exception of one which was honestly just middling) are banger after banger. It did take me a bit in the past when I first heard it to fully adjust but once it did this whole album is really one of a kind and I would highly reccommend it. I really can't wait for a day I could get this album on vinyl or cd.
Track one: "Sweet Charity"
The first track of the album! It definitely gives us the vibe of how this album will be like, quite different from their earlier album works going with a much more somber and slower tone atleast compared with their more energetic and out there works. I love the beginning vibes of the song as if you're on a vacation in some coastal island. The vocals are also great in here which really highlights how it is for the rest of the tracks, very relaxed.
Track two: "None of Them Knew They Were Robots"
This now unlike the first track is a lot more like what'd you expect from a Mr Bungle song! Very high energy and out there, but it still has the distinction that makes it clear it's specifically from this album. This was another one of the first few songs I first listened of Mr Bungle, I think I also just like this track cause it reminds me of the Bump in the night theme song.
Track three: "Retrovertigo"
This track I would have to say is one of the more emotional/somber esc songs in the album,
Track four: "The Air-Conditioned Nightmare"
Track five: "Ars Moriendi"
Track six: "Pink Cigarette"
Track seven: "Golem II: The Bionic Vapour Boy"
Track eight: "The Holy Filament"
Track nine: "Vanity Fair"
Track ten: "Goodbye Sober Day"
(The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny)
(The Raging Wrath of the Easter Bunny, Bowel Of Chiley, Goddammit I Love America!!!$ɫ!!, OU818)
Goddammit I Love America!!!$ɫ!!
Goddammit I Love America is another demo track produced by Mr Bungle released in 1988. It features 7 tracks, 2 of which (Egg and Carousel) would later appear in the Self Titled album while the other 5 demos are all original.
Track one: "Bloody Mary"
Track two: "Egg (1988)"
Track three: "Goosebumps"
Track four: "Waltz for Grandma's sake"
Track five: "Carousel"
Track six: "Definition of Shapes"
Track seven: "Incoherence"
OU818 is one of the 4 demo tracks produced by Mr Bungle and released in 1989. It features 6 tracks, 4 of which are demos that would be later appear in the Self Titled album while Mr. Nice guy was cut last second from the album.
Track one: "Intro"
Not much to say about this apart from it potentially explaining the name origin behind the demos name OU818.
Track two: "Squeeze Me Macaroni"
What would be the third track of the self titled! Most obvious thing is how different the vocals sound, definetely a lot more clearer to say? also not as deep sounding as the final version. I can also notice some different instrumentals used! Apart from that and how the track ends it's not that different from the finished version in the Self Titled album. Still a really fun and energetic listen, both versions are pretty good in my eyes.
Track three: "Slowly Growing Deaf"
Once again the difference from this and the final version really show through the vocals especially with how certain lines are delivered, definetely a lot easier to make out what exactly they're saying. Same with some instrumentals, I especially enjoy the guitar during the bridges of the song. The 'YEAH YEAH' part especially before the 3rd verse really makes me think back to the final version of The Girls of Porn. Really really enjoy the gradual build up with the drums and guitar with the "ears are ringing" refrain. Overall I also really enjoyed this version as much as the final version!
Track four: "The Girls of Porn"
With this track, I could definitely notice the vast difference between this and the final version, definitely a lot more funkier feeling as if the final version couldn't already be extremely funky! The vocals are also different alongside some cut lines during the start of the second bridge. I just love the extra instrumentals in this it's such a banger. I do however miss the inclusion of the "I'd buy that for a dollar!" line and just the way the final version ended, but nonetheless it is once again still a very good version of the song, hell I even say I prefer some parts like the instrumentals in this than the final version.
Track five: "Love is a Fist"
I think for this track in particular, I prefer it a lot more than the final version! The beginning is wonderful and the inclusion of the drums. I just think this is a lot more exciting to me than the final version they went with, especially with the performance of the "I feel strongely about violence" line!
Track Six: "Mr. Nice Guy"
With the final/ending track of this demo, it immediately starts out so fucking funky and just gets better from that. This song is such a perfect sounding song to end this demo off with, I just love the way the instruments are performed and the vocals/line delivery. I also love the change of like rhythm and how it also manages to come back and perfectly match the earlier parts of the song. This track really is perfect for the self titled so it's sad to see it never made the cut, it feels perfect to fit in between stubb (a dub) and The Girls of porn! The ending of the track also just really tops it all off. This I think is going to be a track I replay a lot of it's just so good beginning to end.
This demo album while very short and mostly consisting of demos of songs I've already listened to, is still a very pleasant listen to and I definitely reccommend it to those who have finished listening to the Self Titled and liked it if they haven't listened to this yet. I especially really really like the drums and guitar in the demos here, it strangely makes me think these songs could be in an umjammer lammy game somehow.