Since Mr. Bungle is notorious for taking substantial amounts of time between albums (it took them four years to follow up their 1991 debut), its bandmembers are left with a lot of time on their hands. Hence the members of Mr. Bungle use their off time wisely, by writing, recording, and touring with other bands or, often, side projects.
The best side project of the bunch, Secret Chiefs 3, features Mr. Bungle comrades Trey Spruance (guitar/vocals), Trevor Dunn (bass/vocals), and Danny Heifetz (drums). If there are any remaining who think that the musicians in Mr. Bungle are just a vehicle for vocalist Mike Patton's singing talents, Secret Chiefs 3 is the ultimate proof that this is not the case. Trey Spruance gets a chance to be the leader, as he wrote every track on their 1996 debut First Grand Constitution and Bylaws, and was the record's producer as well. Before the full-length debut appeared, the group whet their fans' appetites by including a Secret Chiefs 3 single with vinyl copies of Mr. Bungle's 1995 magnum opus, Disco Volante, as well as recording a warped version of "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" for a Japanese Christmas compilation. They were also signed on to contribute a Beach Boys track to a Japanese Beach Boys tribute album, showing that they can tackle just about any musical form put in front of them. ~ Greg Prato