Midlife Crisis

"Midlife Crisis" is a song by the American rock band Faith No More. It was released on May 26, 1992 as the first single from their fourth album, Angel Dust. It became their only number-one hit on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

Music and lyrics

"Midlife Crisis" is an alternative metal and funk metal song, which incorporates progressive rock and hip hop elements.

Mike Patton has denied that the song is about having a midlife crisis, as he did not know what one would feel like, but says that "it's more about creating false emotion, being emotional, dwelling on your emotions and in a sense inventing them" and that:
The song is based on a lot of observation and a lot of speculation. But in sort of a pointed way it's kind of about [[Madonna (entertainer)


During production the song was given the working title of "Madonna" which was later maintained as a setlist name during live performances. The drum track for the song contains a sample of the first bar of the song "Cecilia", as performed by Simon and Garfunkel, repeated throughout. The bridge features a sample of "Car Thief" by the Beastie Boys.

Music video

The video for this song was directed by Kevin Kerslake, who also directed their shoestring video for the song "Everything's Ruined". The version on the Who Cares a Lot?: Greatest Videos collection is uncensored and contains shots during the bridge which show a man being stretched by four horses (alluding to an old punishment for regicide, known as "quartering") – the censored version uses additional shots of choirboys running to a large cross instead. Singer Mike Patton can also be seen dancing around holding a spade.

For the video, the sound mix of this song is slightly different than the album version (on certain promotional releases it is referred to as 'The Scream Mix'). For the DVD re-release of Who Cares a Lot?: Greatest Videos, the album version of the song is used instead, with the accommodating edits made.

Appearances and covers

"Midlife Crisis" has featured on the soundtrack for the videogames Tony Hawk's Underground 2 and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas on the fictional radio station Radio X. It is a master track song on Rock Band 3, with the fade-out ending edited for gameplay reasons.

The song has been covered on industrial metal band Bile's 2002 album The Copy Machine. It was covered by American rock band Disturbed twice: the first time for a Faith No More tribute album, which was instead released through the Internet; the second time as a B-side to their fourth studio album Indestructible. This re-recorded version was released on Covered, A Revolution in Sound and re-mastered for a third release on their B-side collection album The Lost Children.


  • Mike Pattonvocals, samples
  • Billy Gouldbass guitar
  • Jim Martinguitar
  • Roddy Bottumkeyboards
  • Mike Bordindrums

    Track listing