On his third album as Blanck Mass, World Eater, Benjamin Power of Fuck Buttons interrogates our inner beasts | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

On his third album as Blanck Mass, World Eater, Benjamin Power of Fuck Buttons interrogates our inner beasts 

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click to enlarge Blanck Mass

Blanck Mass

HARRISON REID

In March, electronic experimentalist Benjamin John Power responded to the ongoing crack-up of society with the feral, postindustrial World Eater (Sacred Bones), his third solo album as Blanck Mass. Best known as half of British group Fuck Buttons, Power understands how to craft profane, volatile instrumentation that evokes supernatural bliss, which he pulls off on World Eater even as he infects the album with overwhelming dread. Power has said that what he’s trying to do here is examine humanity’s “inner beast,” its fetish for violence. That’s obvious in, say, the incomprehensible screams on “Rhesus Negative,” but because Power’s pileup of driving percussion often seems to build toward an unseen light—to my ears, anyway—it suggests that not all hope is lost. Still, even one of the brightest-­sounding tracks here—a glistening song called “The Rat”—doesn’t feel particularly hopeful, probably due to its inspiration. As Power told the Quietus, the song references a “certain global figure” far worse than vermin. The comparison may be “offensive to rats,” though, he added, “because they are intelligent creatures.”   v

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