For a dude who writes all the music and plays almost all the instruments on the albums he makes as Holy Sons, Amos is remarkably un-self-indulgent. Sure, in the past, he's taken to incorporating genre-specific stylistic flourishes, but more often than not, everything he does serves the interest of the songs. And what songs they are. On The Fact Facer, Amos further refines his introspective songcraft, delving deeper into the existential murk evident in song titles like "Selfish Thoughts," "No Self Respect" and "Doomed Myself," not to mention the album-closing title track, itself a nod to the lo-fi four-track production of Holy Sons' early output. While everything hinges on Amos' hypnotic baritone, the songs are coloured with swirling feedback, occasional guitar solos, and just a hint of programmed beats — there's far more live drumming than on the past few albums, which adds yet another layer of brilliance to Nashville-tinged gems like "All Too Free" and "Life Could Be A Dream."
The Fact Facer is easily Amos' most focused offering yet, and a perfect entry point into a back catalogue that's sure to have listeners drinking the Kool-Aid again and again. (Thrill Jockey)