Faith and the Muse
|Faith and the Muse|
|Genres||Gothic rock, dark wave|
|Labels||Metropolis Records, Danse Macabre Records|
|Associated acts||The Eden House, Shadow Project, Strange Boutique, Christian Death, Mephisto Walz, Anima Mundi, Conflict|
|Members||William Faith and Monica Richards|
Faith and the Muse is an American gothic rock/dark wave band composed of two musicians, Monica Richards and William Faith. Their music encompasses many genres, from folk-style songs to darker compositions, drawing on many sources and influences, notably Dead Can Dance. Richards is the primary singer, although Faith sings one or two tracks on each album. Their influences include dark alternative, gothic rock, Celtic, and other folk influences. Welsh and Irish mythology have often served as inspiration to many of the band's songs.
Monica Richards, a native of Washington, D.C., is a musician/artist/poet/scholar. She met William Faith in 1992 when her band, Strange Boutique, opened for Shadow Project in Norfolk, VA. Before starting Faith and the Muse, both had had experience in the gothic rock and post-punk culture of the 1980s. Richards had sung for the band Strange Boutique, while Faith had performed with gothic/death rock icons Shadow Project, Christian Death, Mephisto Walz, and Sex Gang Children. Faith and the Muse was started in 1993 with Richards and Faith exchanging tapes while Richards was still living on the east coast. Shortly thereafter she moved to Los Angeles where the duo was based.
They recorded their debut album Elyria in March 1994, following it in 1995 with the concept album Annwyn, Beneath the Waves, based around Welsh mythology. The band followed this up with an extensive touring schedule, playing with both guest musicians as a full line-up and as an acoustic duo - the latter tour documented on the Vera Causa album in 2001.
Their third album, Evidence of Heaven (1999), marked the end of the first creative phase of Faith and the Muse. They then modernised both their image and their overall sound, the result appearing on their 2003 album The Burning Season - their first on Metropolis Records.
Their most recent efforts were 2009's :ankoku butoh:, a compact disc/dvd/book release, steeped in Japanese myth, sound and atmoshpere. This was followed by the : shoumei : dvd in 2010, capturing the band performing during the :ankoku butoh: tour in Houston, TX.
They have toured extensively in North America, South America and Europe, and have performed at major music festivals such as Wave-Gotik-Treffen and M'Era Luna in Germany, several Whitby Gothic Weekends in the UK and at Convergence festival 4 and 13 in the U.S. Their live performances feature a full band with a rotating line-up of live musicians.
Outside of the band, Faith and Richards are permaculture designers, whose most public project was Ars Terra - the retrofit their home into a practical example of a sustainable suburban homestead.
Richards has also recently been active contributing vocals to The Eden House - a collaborative musical project initiated by Tony Pettitt (formerly of Fields of the Nephilim and Rubicon) and Steve Carey (formerly of This Burning Effigy) and involving a varied collection of guest musicians and vocalists.
Faith continues to release music and tour with his current project The Bellwether Syndicate, as well as playing guitar for Conflict and bass for The March Violets.
- Elyria (TESS Records) (1994)
- Annwyn, Beneath the Waves (TESS Records) (1996)
- Live in Mainz (16.10.1997) (1997)
- Evidence of Heaven (Neue Ästhetik Multimedia) (1999)
- Vera Causa (Metropolis Records) (2001)
- The Burning Season (Metropolis Records) (2003)
- Ankoku butoh (Danse Macabre) (2009)