Blanck Mass: Animated Violence Mild review – grief, rage and transcendent electronica

(Sacred Bones)
Mourning the death of the planet and a parent, Ben Power has made an album that fuses existential fear with sheer beauty

Back in 2012, Blanck Mass sounded optimistic. Ben Power’s one-man electro-noise project (distinct from his work as part of the duo Fuck Buttons) was best known for his ambient headrush of a composition, Sundowner, which was used as part of the soundtrack for Danny Boyle’s buoyant Olympics opening ceremony. But, as the political mood of the country continued to sour, Power’s work darkened in response, leading up to 2017’s snarling World Eater, and now Animated Violence Mild: an album where blind rage and beauty commingle. In the accompanying press release, Power describes how the record was born of grief – he wrote it while musing on how consumerism is destroying our planet. In the final stages of recording, his father died, and so he also began processing this deeply personal loss alongside his global mourning.

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