Band: Fuck the Facts
Album: Pleine Noirceur
Label: Noise Salvation
Genre: Experimental Grindcore, “Bastardised Grindcore”
Release Date: November 20, 2020
For Fans Of: Pig Destroyer, Cephalic Carnage, The Locust
Since its onset, Grindcore has been a sub-genre of extreme music that has always set out to push the boundaries of speed and extremity. Bands like Terrorizer, Carcass and Napalm Death took what people thought was possible in punk and metal and upped the ante to a point where accessibility and song structure took a back seat to blistering riffs, harsh vocals and blasting drums. As the years have gone on, like so many other sub-genres, grindcore had become stale in the early to mid 90’s, as each new band simply thought that being more extreme than the last one was a substitute for writing good songs. Thankfully, as is often the case with genres of music that have any kind of staying power, this stagnation caused a subset of bands to begin experimenting with the grindcore sound. Bands like Cephalic Carnage added an aspect of technicality akin to many of the death metal bands of the same time period. There was The Locust who played with experimentation, mixing in elements of new wave and noise rock. Then there was Fuck the Facts (FTF), often underrecognized for their contributions to the grindcore scene, who added prog elements into their grindcore with a quality unrivaled by many of the bands contemporaries.
Hailing from Quebec, FTF released their first album in 2000 and have released 9 full length albums and a seemingly endless stream of demos, Eps and split albums, with the band’s 2012 album Die Miserable being nominated for a Juno award. 2015 saw the bands prolific release schedule die down and the band appeared to go on hiatus for the past half-decade. Thankfully, this hiatus is over and 2020 is the year that FTF is back. Pleine Noirceur, is the band’s 10th full length album and marks an excellent return for the band.
Fuck the Facts has never been a band to be placed in a box and Pleine Noirceur is no exception. The album opens with some intro noise, followed by riffing that would be right at home on a black metal album before transitioning into a mid paced section that gives screamo vibes and with this one song alone you already know that you are in for an eclectic album that will never stagnate or rest on its laurels. The next song is an all out grinding assault, with break neck guitar riffing, incredible blasting drums and some of the best vocals I’ve heard in this type of music in a long time. As the album continues one thing becomes apparent and that is that no two songs will ever sound the same. Some sound like hardcore, or have jazz passages, or prog-esque soloing, but the band never loses its essential grind base. One thing that has always been unique to FTF is the ability to shift from genre to genre, often within the same song, without ever feeling forced or abrupt. Flow has always been the name of the game when it comes to this band and the sonic and tempo shifting that takes place always feels natural and smooth. FTF took 5 years off to release this album and the songs feel better for it. Everything feels thought out and intentional and the album feels whole as opposed to just feeling like a collection of songs.
While I did enjoy the album and think that it is really a pretty fantastic album overall, I just don’t know how much I will return to it. Die Miserable is, and probably always will be, FTF’s best album and the one I’m likely to return to, but Pleine Noirceur might just be the next best thing. It’s an example of a band firing on all cylinders and not one moment of the album feels wasted. Each song is fully realized and there is not a song that I would skip when listening as it would inhibit the album’s momentum. 2020 has been a surprisingly good year for grind and there are just other albums that grabbed my attention more. I am curious to see the reception of this album and I hope it gets the recognition that it deserves.
Rating: 8 / 10
- Doubt, Fear, Neglect
- Pleine Noirceur
- Sans Lumière
- Sans Racines
- Everything I Love Is Ending
- A Dying Light
- Dropping Like Flies
- An Ending
Total Playing Time: 41:44