FET.NAT creates a bombastic mix of left-field punk, free jazz, trip-hop, and precise noise. The Hull, Quebec four-piece is built up of Olivier Fairfield on drums, Pierre-Luc Clement on guitars, Linsey Wellman on saxophone, and punctuated by the nihilistic franglais poetics of vocalist JFNO. His lyrical outbursts evoke the absurdist humour of American Wrestling and kung fu movies, while carrying forward the torch of the Rock In Opposition movement. Known for fiery live performances lifted by their borderline theatrical antics, FET.NAT transcends language and province, reorganizing overlapping nations into a carnival of levitating and confounding grooves.

On Le Mal, the band’s first full-length album since Poule mange poule, FET.NAT turns concept on its head and submerges in its own upside-downside-up world. An illusory mirror image of itself, Le Mal is comprised of 5 pieces on one side and of MIDI interpretations of the same pieces on the other. The result is a full-player record of discernible variety, with warped lyrics telling two same-but-different tales, underscored by instrumentals of menacing restraint, hushed polyrhythms, and a dire sense of elation. Le Mal shows a band of seemingly limitless talent revelling in the unsettling murkiness of machines and poetry. Le Mal is exceptionally crafted, with meticulous attention to space and detail, yet precariously nesting on a bomb of potential energy. Or not.

Le Mal was recently long-listed for the 2019 Polaris Music Prize.