Blanck Mass
Animated Violence Mild


4.0
excellent

Review

by PostMesmeric USER (85 Reviews)
August 17th, 2019 | 73 replies


Release Date: 08/16/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The flesh of Animated Violence Mild doesn’t rot: it bleeds.

As many others have said already, World Eater by Blanck Mass could be easily interpreted by its album cover: a growling maw that’s seconds away from ripping and tearing at its prey. Without a doubt, it was an unsettling album. It’s tough to overlook the crackling freakout of “Rhesus Negative” or the more-upon-more sonic layering of the later sections of “Hive Mind.” Even in its softer, less intense moments, it was anything but a drone album. World Eater was Benjamin John Power’s triumphant attack on the sensibilities of what could be called “experimental electronic music” and that level of volatility is what made it such a bizarre, but mesmerizing record. And the 2019 follow-up to World Eater doesn’t hide its mantra either. In fact, familiarly enough, it’s blatantly displayed on its album cover. After taking a nervous breath and biting in, the listener steadily realizes that the flesh of Animated Violence Mild doesn’t rot: it bleeds.

Without question, Animated Violence Mild is almost perpetually on edge. This admittedly isn’t too different from World Eater’s most memorable moments, but this album doesn’t give the listener many opportunities to catch their breath. This is an anxious album, through and through. Power supercharges these tracks with dense tornadoes of noise, distortion, and ravenous musical chaos. It’s impossible to overstate how these tracks manage to feel so full, so close to rupturing and bleeding out, but that’s a genuine characteristic that Power makes no effort to mask. He’s in his element here, demanding more and more layers of sonic ferocity, and carefully walking the line between aggression and texture.

In the case of “Love Is a Parasite” and the excellent “Death Drop”, distorted, almost black metal-esque vocal bits are added in, piercing through the miasma of electronic noise, while dripping with venom. In a different vibe, “Hush Money” stuns immediately, with its clean, shimmering synths and rapid electronic rhythms. Power successfully merges his angry experimentalism with a sleek, rhythmic style with this track, turning a cyberpunk spiral into one of the best tracks on the record. It’s pretty damn impressive that Power is able to make such ferocious tracks into something you can dance to, but lo and behold, Animated Violence Mild is chock full of them.

The moments of reprieve are rare enough to retain the album’s chaos, but even they have an unsettling and anxious nature to them. The repetitive glitchiness of “House Vs. House” echoes the stuttering beats of World Eater’s “Hive Mind”, but soar into a cosmic shine, a surprisingly uplifting setpiece that contrasts nearly everything on the album. The funky “No Dice” lacks the immediacy of something like “Death Drop”, but like many a great Blanck Mass track, it constantly adds in new beats and sounds as the song progresses, stacking the mix higher and higher. “Creature/West Fuqua” cools the scalding burns of “Love Is a Parasite” and ends with a majestic settler, giving the listener a well-deserved moment to catch their breath again.

But the restlessness never totally dissipates. Across a condensed eight tracks, Animated Violence Mild never completely relaxes. It’s a tense collection of songs, whether they’re frying your synapses with feverish noise or simply making you sweat buckets with infectious dance beats. In all honesty, it doesn’t stray too far from World Eater, but at the same time, there’s something far more cohesive and unified about how Animated Violence Mild is structured. The tracks still resonate with a boiling intensity, and even during the brief moments where things settle down a bit, Power is always at the ready to slingshot things back into the stratosphere. Whether it’s those devilish, distorted shouts or just another melodic layer on the cake, Animated Violence Mild always sounds anxious. Whether you call it experimental or not, Blanck Mass continues to be Power’s exhaustive effort at making music that, at almost every moment, feels one step away from shattering to pieces.



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World Eater

Comments:Add a Comment 
PostMesmeric
August 17th 2019


763 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is my first SputnikMusic review in more than a year, so I hope you enjoy it. I really liked this album and I'm eager to find out everyone's thoughts on it.



And I'll wrap up that Primus discography review series. It's still on my mind, don't worry. Thanks, all.

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
August 17th 2019


10196 Comments


I think Mars had this on his radar [?] so i might have to give this a go.

Slex
Contributing Reviewer
August 17th 2019


7999 Comments


Yr thinking of Hesp but yes I’m excited to give this a listen

Digging: Blood Cultures - Oh Uncertainty! A Universe Despairs

dbizzles
August 17th 2019


13419 Comments


This is good but not as into it as world eater. Last one was a grower anyway so w/e.

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
August 17th 2019


10196 Comments


What Slex said.

Arcade
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2019


142 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

house vs house is soty

Digging: JPEGMAFIA - All My Heroes Are Cornballs

luci
August 17th 2019


11669 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

tiring record, can only enjoy it in chunks. too maximalist for its own good

house vs house is soty [2]

Let
August 17th 2019


1666 Comments


Somehow I love Blumchen, which is very loud (not the literal kind), but I find this a little much. Production and textures are fantastic, but I'm not loving all of the mixing; something seems a bit off and it's fatiguing. Black Dice is fantastic. Good review, really hit the nail on the head regarding the nervous, manic spirit of the music.

anatelier
August 17th 2019


2874 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Kinda disappointed in this, it feels quite recycled and schticky. 3.5 is probably my ceiling.

Tyll
August 17th 2019


6 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great review! I love this album! Just as I loved World Eater. And Dumb Flesh as well. All for different reasons. The power in these new tracks and the sheer cohesiveness and great arrangement of everything. Power's music and way of approaching things just resonates with me.

Toad
August 17th 2019


2010 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

House vs. house soty (3)

I imagine I would have liked this more as an EP. After h v h the rest stays in the same zone without being able to match that height

Still bangs though, big thanks to this dude for continuing to push his sound

gryndstone
August 17th 2019


1347 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

'too maximalist for its own good' is just Blanck Mass in a nutshell, tho



Hush Money and House V House are insane. Love Is A Parasite goes stupid

Ashtiel
August 17th 2019


693 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"No Dice" supposedly samples the "Who Wants to Be A Millionaire?" theme.

Digging: Blood Cultures - Happy Birthday

Taxt
August 17th 2019


1355 Comments


Really stoked to give this one a listen

hesperus
Contributing Reviewer
August 17th 2019


1118 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

guess this is what i get for dragging my feet on a review, lol



really solid review. i think you nailed what the album does well

Trifolium
August 18th 2019


8997 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Omg I need to hear this noooww!!!

oltnabrick
August 18th 2019


37387 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

ok epic

Digging: Leviathan - Verrter

Lord(e)Po)))ts
August 18th 2019


44806 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

I said it before and I'll say it again this is just emo HEALTH playing DDR

Digging: ((( O ))) - ((( 1 )))

oltnabrick
August 18th 2019


37387 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

idk what that means

Lord(e)Po)))ts
August 18th 2019


44806 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

It sounds like modern HEALTH playing DDR is what I mean



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