After a five-year break from recording, FM finally got back into the studio to record a new album on a new label, but with an old face back in the band: Nash the Slash left the band after the first album to embark on a series of solo experimental rock albums, but ended up spurring the band to re-form when looking for backing musicians for his own material. (Despite Nash the Slash's return, his replacement, Ben Mink, ended up staying on in a supporting role here.) One would expect that the reintroduction of Nash the Slash to Canada's long-absent prog band would inject an oddball edge to the band's sound, but one would be wrong with that assumption. In fact, Con-Test was an alarmingly commercial album in comparison to the band's first three, with chugging synth rhythms clacking out a dance beat and synthetic orchestral stabs punctuating these very catchy synth pop songs in just the right places to give them a radio-friendly feel. Longtime fans were surely disappointed by this turn of events, but the listening public at large rewarded the band with a few Canadian radio hits. The saddest thing of all was that even though Con-Test was a reasonably competent pop album, it wasn't quite as interesting to listen to it as it was to search through the text on the front cover. Ow.
AllMusic Review by Sean Carruthers