Mike Patton shot to fame as the frontman for Faith No More with the band enjoying some major hits in the 1990s, but the singer has told Rolling Stone he has been living with agoraphobia in recent years.
A planned tour with the band and Patton's side project Mr Bungle was put on hold due to "mental health reasons" last year and the singer has opened up about how his condition has affected him.
Patton says "it’s easy to blame it on the pandemic, but I’ll be honest, man - at the beginning of the pandemic, I was like, “This is fucking great. I can stay home and record.” I’ve got a home studio. So I was like, “Yeah, what’s the big deal?”
"And then something clicked, and I became completely isolated and almost antisocial and afraid of people."
"That sort of anxiety, or whatever you want to call it, led to other issues, which I choose not to discuss. But I got some professionals helping me, and now I’m feeling better and getting closer to diving back in."
Patton revealed that he was diagnosed with agoraphobia, and explained his condition.
"I was afraid of people. I got freaked out by being around people. And maybe that was because I spent two years basically indoors during Covid. I don’t know. Maybe it reinforced feelings that I already had. But just knowing about it, talking about it, really helped."
Patton had planned to go back on the road with Faith No More, but said there was "radio silence" with the band since he made the decision to put the tour on hiatus.
The band was about to begin rehearsals for the tour, when Patton opted to take time out.
"I just said, “I can’t do it", Patton recalled.
"They had been rehearsing so if I were them I’d be really pissed off at me. And they were. And they probably still are."
"But it’s just about being true to yourself and knowing what your limits are. And I knew that if I kept pushing, it could have been some sort of disastrous result," he added.
Asked about future plans with the band, Patton said "we may reschedule stuff; we may not. I’ll just leave it at that. It’s a little confusing and complicated. So if we do, we do. If we don’t, that’s cool, too."
Patton is on the road to recovery and said "towards the end of the year, I’ll be doing my first shows in, like, two years, which is the longest time since I started doing this, that I’ve been out of the game."
The singer is at work with the supergroup Dead Cross which features former Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo on drums, and is working on new music with the group.
Patton replaced original Faith No More vocalist Chuck Mosley in 1988, and shortly after joining, the band scored a major hit with 'Epic' which hit the top 10 in the band's native United States, number one in Australia and charted in the top 30 in the UK and Ireland.
Faith No More are regarded as one of the most influential rock bands of the 1990s, with their 1992 album 'Angel Dust' widely noted as one of the best rock albums of the decade.
Bands like Slipknot, Deftones and System Of A Down have cited the band as a major influence on their music, and the band returned after a near 20-year hiatus in 2015 with their album 'Sol Invictus'.