PICK OF THE WEEK: Fuck the Facts stampede back with harsh grind, atmosphere on ‘Pleine Noirceur’

Photo by Anndy Negative

It’s not strange now to say you miss a lot of things and people, because we’ve had a year unlike any other in our lives, and disconnection and distance are things we all have in our relationships. People reassure each other that one day this thing will be over, and we can gather and party and just hang out again, but it feels so far away.

Yet, the arrival of “Pleine Noirceur,” the latest record from grind/death beasts Fuck the Facts, almost made it feel like reuniting with a friend again who has been gone for five long years. It was 2015 when they last destroyed us, with Juno-nominated “Desire Will Rot,” so we definitely were missing the band—vocalist Melanie Mongeon, guitarist Topon Das, drummer Mathieu Vilandre—who has created some of the most interesting and unhinged heavy music over seven previous albums and six EPs. FTF have created a 12-track, 42-minute mauler that isn’t grind from front to back and is a bit more atmospherically experimental than what they’ve done in the past. Even in their bio, they suggest you made need a few listens to fully digest. I loved it from listen one, but the more you visit, the more it works into your bloodstream and chews into your brain.

“Doubt, Fear Neglect” open the record in a sift of noise that feels like it’s building momentum before a ridiculous, bulldozing riff sprawls, and Mongeon’s shrieks erupt and pound away. The track is wonderfully reckless and digs its claws into the earth before melody evens out, and a thick haze situates, feeling foggy before a violent end. “Ailleurs” is a quick one, a 1:17-long grinder that completely destroys, with the bass driving, speedy madness exploding, and the track mashing out into noise toward the title track that unloads a cool riff and plodding bass. The verses crush as Mongeon’s isolated yells jolt your cellular structure while the boulder keeps rampaging down the hill. Melody clouds the violence as the guitars let off interesting colors, the shrieks hammer, and the track has a gut-wrenching end. “Aube” is another fast one, a 1:24-long adventure into mystery while guitars create a strange mist, and the shrieks jab from out of the darkness. “Sans Lumiere” delivers stirring guitars and a ground-and-pound pace that opens wounds easily. The track gets filthy while Mongeon’s vocals send ripples of pain before the track halts in its track, rebirthed on the other side as a different style of beast. The vocals rampage as the growls get ugly before a tempered pace carries the track away. “Sans Racines” is 38 seconds of chaos as every element splatters the madness, riffs scuff, the vocals peels back flesh, and the drums leave dust.

“Everything I Love Is Ending” starts with a gritty riff and wailed yells as the pace begins to get more aggressive. “It feels horrible, everything I love is ending!” Mongeon wails as the track hit the gas pedal, power gushes, and the track ends in dark echo. “A Dying Light” bleeds into the picture as the guitars glimmer before the power kicks in, and gloomy energy drags heavy clouds overhead. Mongeon’s cries ripple while warmth picks up, and the back of the song ignites and folds into the earth. “Dropping Like Flies” has molten riffs and devastating shrieks, while the pace feels irreparably charred before weirdness arrives. From there, the bass thickens, the guitars are fluid, and everything dissolves in a sound cloud. “L’abandon” basks in playful guitar work before the band shreds the senses, atmosphere thickens, and then we soak right into “An Ending” that feels solemn right out of the gates. The pace brings shadowy sorrow as Mongeon’s vocals grind you into the dirt, with the leads shuddering in pain. Sounds create pools of blood before the final moments are devoured by erosion. “_cide” closes the album, a track that starts off lightheaded, but you know damn well the hammer is coming. Sure enough, when it does, a driving force bores into your chest as Mongeon’s vocals sound like they’re scraped from the bottom of her bruised heart, emotions charge, and the final blows finally take your consciousness.

Fuck the Facts’ return after five years proves some things are worth the wait as “Pleine Noirceur” is so incredibly satisfying and absolutely beats you down. The record isn’t full throttle the entire time and demonstrates more of FTF’s tool set they’ve built over the years, but when they light the powder keg, it’s as explosive as anything in their catalog. It’s great to have this band back in our periphery, and while they can’t deface us live right now, this record is enough to ensure our muscles are nice bruised in the meantime.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/FuckTheFacts/

To buy the album, go here: https://www.fuckthefacts.com/