Unsung Masterpieces Part 2: Failure- Fantastic Planet

The 90’s were such a great time for rock music. There had been a revolution of loud guitars, heavy bass, thundering drums and meaningful lyrics. There was also a lot of epic masterpieces that went unnoticed. One album in particular was Failure’s “Fantastic Planet.” Ken Andrews (Vocals/Guitar/Bass), Greg Edwards (Bass/Guitar/Percussion/Piano), and Kelli Scott (Drums) produced a very honest etherial album. Space-rock themes course through the album’s lyrics, as well as various indirect references to drug addiction, drug-related experiences, and prostitution. There are also lush textures that guide the listener on a seductive path throughout the listening of the album. Fantastic Planet features so many great songs that it makes it hard to pick just one stand out track. Songs such as Saturday Savior, Sergeant Politeness, Smoking Umbrellas, Pitiful, The Nurse Who Loved Me and Stuck On You are the most common. Though other songs such as Dirty Blue Balloons, Blank, Pillowhead and Daylight, compete at such a high level that it’s hard to skip any of the songs. The album was self produced by Failure and engineered by Ken Andrews at their own studio. During the touring cycle for Fantastic Planet, Troy VanLeeuwen was brought on to add more guitar to the live sound. After only 3 albums together Failure parted ways with each other. Ken Andrews went on to start the bands Year Of The Rabbit and ON, as well as become a well sought after producer/engineer. Greg Edwards formed Autolux, a very experimental yet rocking band. Kelli Scott went on to play with Veruca Salt and other bands. Troy VanLeeuwen went on to play with A Perfect Circle and now with Queens Of The Stone Age. The amount of influence Failure has had on today’s bands is very noticeable.  Failure seemed to be on to something way before “it” was time for it to come to the forefront of the masses. Luckily for everyone that has become a Failure fan over the years can rejoice. Failure are back and ready to claim their place!


By: Brian Lacy