Benjamin John Power’s Blanck Mass project has landed a new album, the title of which, World Eater, is rightfully confident both in scale and direction. The proportion of this album is staggering – not simply in a measure of time, but in the depth and ferocity with which subjects are handled.
The tunes contained on World Eater appear to signal a new wave of consciousness from Power, who presses out, away from any previous expectation that audiences may have had. Darkness is explored, and wave after wave of controlled detonations leave marks across the speakers, and while fans will know and love the volume that Power likes to deploy, they may not have previously experienced this kind of intent from the man.
For all the inky depths and dark places that World Eater explores, Power is clearly a pacifist at heart, so even in the most rage-filled passages of breathless exuberance he ignites a kind of hope. Tracks like “Please” bring bright flashes of promise, new melodic textures and safer tempos. For as crazy as shit can get, and let’s be clear – shit does get crazy – the man hasn’t lost his marbles – he knows how to love, and make you feel loved.
In a track like “Minnesota / Eas Fors / Naked” it’s clear that Power also knows how to challenge, confound and confess. It’s here, in the broken down and rebuilt moments that the raw beauty is best. Frustration and euphoria wash in. It’s really fucking good.
As one-half of Fuck Buttons Power established himself as an artist of note, delivering electronic music with elements of organic urgency. Unfettered by commercial ambition and yet immediately appealing, his work with Andrew Hung remains timeless and surprising. As Blanck Mass a sense of determinism populates the tunes, and from his self-titled solo debut Power has known how to please crowds. However, this is an adult artist and pleasing people isn’t always a priority. On World Eater we listen as an Power responds with anger at world events, but then he sits and reflects. Frustration, itself, appears to be analysed – and so leads the path to personal and communal growth.
When listening to World Eater there’s a very real sense that Blanck Mass has set a new trajectory – one of further exploration – as he invests deeper, and searches inwards while demanding more from the craft that he built. And, like all good artists, he’d demanding something of his audience too.
I’m going to award this album 17 out of 17 arbitrary units of scale, by which you can measure the futility and beauty of your own existence.
Pre-order Blanck Mass World Eater