Emotions are a pivotal component in an artist’s daily life, they control the exact way that their motive of operation’s direction and display their inner feelings about the world that surrounds them. This is all true, but rarely does an artist capture such a profound topic and contain such a feeling of raw emotion than Blanck Mass does on their newest record, World Eater. The love child of Benjamin John Power, Blanck Mass is an electric journey from the start to finish. Power does an incredible job of steeping to new heights and proving just what can be done with a minimal set of instruments and exactly how Power himself set these limitations as a way to light his comfort zone ablaze, creating an entirely new sound that both creates an enigmatic state, but also balances between beauty and pure fear.
The opening of World Eater grits the teeth and unleashes an incredibly cheerful, but gentle opening that leads the listener into what sounds like a madhouse of sound. “John Doe’s Carnival of Error” is just as the title suggests, it is reminiscing of a child-like wonder that has a substantial amount of draw to it. As the track slowly evolves, it becomes a mix of strange, chopped voices that are near impossible to make out and then erupts into a wall of sound that contains crashing suspended cymbals, synths that fade in from the background to the foreground, and an unexpected segue into a rapid-fired, electronic track that becomes a synthetic mix of both portions of dance rhythms and aggressive punches of bass and snare.
Almost introducing a cult-like consistent pounding from the percussion, “Rhesus Negative” is strength-ridden and brings about Power’s main message that he states on his BandCamp Page. Blanck Mass begins, “As humans, we are aware of our inner beast and should therefore be able to control it. We understand our hard-wired primal urges and why they exist in an evolutional sense. We understand the relationship between mind and body. Highly evolved and intelligent, we should be able to recognize these genetic hangovers and control them…” Power then moves on to say, “The human race is consuming itself…” Even as World Eater does show immense signs of incredible amounts of power and assertiveness through the seven-track record; World Eater still produces signs and sounds of hope for the future as well.
As the third-track, “Please” slides into frame after the frantic style of “Rhesus Negative,” Blanck Mass produces a better spotlight into the minimalistic style that was spoken about earlier. Using reverberated clicks and distorted voices, Blanck Mass illustrates a grand, open soundscape that produces echoing noises that follow the track until the bass lines are introduced. This is when the “Please” can take its mold as the distortion weighs heavily and creates a sense of waves that crash over the track, generating confusion that both collapses and reappears throughout the different sections. Even at the most minimalistic moments, World Eater is still incredibly layered and complex; Power creates moments of beauty that contrast between the moments of darkness and these contrasts work wonderfully. World Eater is a record that will generate a thousand different emotions within the near 50-minute runtime, and is a welcome change as the consistent flow keeps Blanck Mass continually fresh.
Aggression and animosity floods back into World Eater as “The Rat” jumps head first into the foreground and launches an instant assault of kicks that resonate as the pounding bass drums and increases in intensity as playful synths are introduced. Blanck Mass produces a power-hungry animal that borders on constant destruction as the instruments become progressively faster, stronger, and more unsusceptible toward the inevitable end that suddenly bounces into “Silent Treatment.”
These sudden jumps made by Blanck Mass make World Eater so unpredictable, so highly-spirited, and so adventurous that the sound from each track to the next is a completely new experience every single time. Similar to Clams Casino’s sound, “Silent Treatment” is a mix of both hopeful synths and simple percussion that moves between sixteenth-notes and these clam-like synths that open up and displays a much softer side of Blanck Mass. This soft side also continues into the following, “Minnesota / Eas Fors / Naked.” While the first portion, “Minnesota” is a noise-ridden and entirely unmusical styled track that instead relies on atmosphere and synthetic motions to then segue into the much easier to follow second portion, “Eas Fors.” More musical than its predecessor, “Eas Fors” continues to use atmosphere and eventually leads to a gentle intermission that focuses on using wind chimes and synth pads which then allows “Naked” to transition the sound with echoing drums and a large focus on tranquility.
The last triple-threat, “Minnesota / Eas Fors / Naked” is also the catalyst which leads into the final act of World Eater. “Hive Mind” leaves World Eater on a more than hopeful high note that echoes into the future and begs the question and the answering of human nature and the controlling motions of emotions. Man’s inner beast, that continues to thrive.