Fucked: Up One Day (Merge) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Fucked Up

One Day


Jan 27, 2023 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Fucked Up’s new record marks a departure from the hefty concept albums for which they’re most revered and adored. While 2011’s David Comes to Life and 2018’s Dose Your Dreams reveled in their magnitude, length, and epic scope, One Day is a brief, brilliant fireworks display of an album, written and largely recorded in the space of a single day.

Damian Abraham, razor-throated and immaculately tuneful, gives bold life to raggedly glorious, roughly anthemic songs such as “Huge New Her,” the kinetic, table-smashing, knee-sliding, stranger-hugging rock ‘n’ roll of “Found,” and the heartbreaking “Falling Right Under”—a lament for a lost friend with the painfully relatable lines, “Still remember the last time I saw you/A text sent across the theater crowd/Don’t know why I never made it over/And I will always regret that now.”

The band evoke the chiming guitars of Sonic Youth on “Lords of Kensington,” an immediate, intelligent analysis of gentrification that doesn’t let the narrator off lightly: “Where was the place we used for shows?/Now it’s buried underneath where the condo grows,” Abraham cries before turning the spotlight back on himself, “I’m caught up in the past/Just trying to change the facts/We overwrote the map.”

One Day races, rages, and never falters in its clear-eyed humanity, honesty, and emotion. It’s a gut punch, a high five, a party, and a hangover all at once, delivered with a welcoming smile and an open heart.

For evidence, see “Broken Little Boys,” a deeply felt look at patriarchal masculinity—“I was fucked before I was born/I learned intimacy from porn”—that finally, and typical of the album, offers optimism—“It must be discussed/The cycle ends with us.”

On “Cicada,” guitarist and songwriter Mike Haliechuk gives us his sole lead vocal of the album, a Hüsker Dü beauty dripping with honey melody. On closer “Roar,” the rabid punk rock kiss-off the album deserves, the last words we hear are “You’ll all be standing with us there at the end/And that’s all we need.” Who could want more from a punk rock album?

It’s a remarkably sure-footed, brilliantly confident record and one that condenses the greatness of Fucked Up into a bite size treat. It’s a welcome, exhilarating release that, even in its darker moments, manages to uplift and inspire. It may have been smashed out in just a day, but it’s the kind of record you’ll be coming back to for years. (www.fuckedup.cc)

Author rating: 8.5/10

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Average reader rating: 7/10


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