On the third album from the Chicago post-rock trio – formed from the ashes of Disappears in 2017 – singer Brian Case is almost disappearing into their hypnotic wall of industrial sound. Minimalism has always been central to the FACS project, but here Case is almost actively removing his voice from the equation – there are snatches of cut-up vocals in the early part of tracks, and then nothing for quite some time until the next one. It’s highly effective, suggesting that he wants us to know that what he’s saying isn’t at all the most important thing going on here. Except, well, when it suddenly is. ‘Casual Indifference’ sees this technique deployed to detonate a political message: “Different sexes,” spits Case, staccato, “Playing around with… Who can say?”. In its elusiveness and its repetition, it becomes a remarkably effective bit of messaging. Case explained that the track “is definitely the most explicit lyrically in terms of its message… love is love, and anyone who disagrees is wrong.” Right on.
In their hypnotic, repetitive moodiness, the band’s closest analogue is probably Salford’s GNOD, or even Thurston Moore on his last two records. The drumming is worth mentioning too: check the percussion on tracks like ‘Version’ and ‘Boy’, swelling like a militia until they’re very front and centre, the last noise on the battlefield.