There’s a satisfaction listening to FACS – a Sunday roast, comfort food kind of ballast that fills and fulfils in all the ways you want. And sure, it’s been written before, but they’re a great example of what being the sum of parts can really mean with guitarist Brian Case, bassist Alianna Kalaba and drummer Noah Leger individually adding purpose, power and intent to the undulating, gloomy unison.
It all coalesces to create a density that doesn’t feel too heavy but still moves with heft; Kalaba and Leger with the momentum meets minimalism foundation, Case the relative outlier constantly prodding for holes, bleeding the edges, his guitar lines sliding and slicing through the tautness, providing the squall and the contrast.
At six tracks, there’s not a bad one on here. ‘Constellation’ opens with ominous intent, Leger’s booming toms and Kalaba’s growling bass adding the initial hostility before Case’s guitar work drifts and twists over the top. And there’s no break before the rhythmic flow of standout track ‘When You Say’ locks down into a thick, rolling bass line as Case’s vocals bite over rangy, reverb-heavy guitar.
‘Slogan’ veers more math-rock, the trio twisting around a central, repetitive guitar hook as Kalaba’s bass hits a deliciously dialed up overload, ‘Class Spectre’ clicks in with another heavyset groove and a darker, industrial energy while the slower, methodical ‘Still Life’ dials down the mood a touch further, drifting into a minimal, echo-heavy meditation.
Collectively, these styles might seem overly adjacent but there are more than enough shades to give Still Life In Decay a compelling balance. More about the rumble than the thunder crack, it’s a deceptively agile listen that constantly evolves and contorts; the real art here is that FACS know exactly when to let things bristle, boom and bleed out.
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