Blanck Mass is the British composer and electronic recording artist of Benjamin John Power. The first Blanck Mass album, recorded for Mogwai’s Rock Action imprint, was recorded and released in 2011. Originally intended as a studio only project, whilst Fuck Buttons were on hiatus, the album soon took on a life of its own when it received critical plaudits. A tour followed, with dates in the UK, Europe and the US.
In July 2012, Danny Boyle and musical director Rick Smith handpicked ‘Sundowner’ from the album to be performed in collaboration with the London Symphony Orchestra at key
moments of the Olympic Games opening ceremony in London, which was broadcast to 900 million people worldwide. Some of Ben’s work with Fuck Buttons was also featured at the games and on the TV broadcast.
Oneohtrix Point Never’s Software label released ‘White Math / Polymorph’ 12” the following month, which was a departure from the ambient hi-fi sound of the debut, and Blanck Mass’
first move into Techno. By this point Blanck Mass had become a fully functioning live and studio outfit, and was handpicked by Sigur Ros to be the main support act on their European tour. Shortly afterwards Ben appeared in Ben Wheatley’s ‘A Field in England’ movie, which featured the
Blanck Mass track ‘Chernobyl’.
Spring 2015 saw the release of ‘Dumb Flesh’; a landmark recording both in terms of production and composition, with Blanck Mass now fully established as Ben’s main creative outlet. This period also saw Ben’s first foray into the soundtrack world, as he curated and featured on an alternative score for Belgian independent movie ‘The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears’, in collaboration with the East End Film Festival. The year closed with the release of ‘The Great Confuso’, an epic 33 minute EP featuring contributions from the legendary former Throbbing Gristle and Psychic TV leader Genesis P. Orridge.
Extensive touring and writing the next album were the order of the day in 2016, with the Adult Swim singles club release of ‘D7 D5’ (entitled as a response chess move to Manuel Gottsching’s classic ‘E2 E4’). This was also released as a limited edition one-sided 12” single on the Richter Sound label.
The ‘World Eater’ album came next and propelled Blanck Mass to the forefront of experimental electronic music. Critical acclaim followed, firmly putting Blanck Mass in people’s minds as a premier league outfit. A world tour cemented cult status and established a post-Fuck Buttons global fan base. The record further solidified Ben’s position as a cutting edge producer and performer, with other established artists approaching Ben to produce and oversee recording sessions. This manifested itself in the release of the Blanck Mass produced Editors album ‘Violence’, with another Editors release following; the eight track ‘Blanck Mass
In 2018 ‘Please’ from ‘World Eater’ became BM’s first track to be streamed over a million times on Spotify, and this was followed by a remix of the track featuring original vocals from Sacred Bones label mate Zola Jesus. The same year witnessed the one off double A-sided single ‘Odd Scene’ / ‘Shit Luck’, which was a nod to Ben’s youth in the UK punk and hardcore scene.
In 2019 the ambitious ‘Animated Violence Mild’ album was a creative step forward, with metal and dance music colouring his palette to produce another album which made it clear
that the re-invention process was a part of the ongoing Blanck Mass agenda. Again, critical response was extremely positive, with the album attracting listeners beyond the confines of the existing fan base.
Ben’s work was now attracting interest from the film world, and first time director Nick Rowland approached Blanck Mass to score his staggering debut feature length movie ‘Calm with Horses’ (re-titled ‘The Shadow of Violence’ for the North American market). The soundtrack was issued on Portishead’s Geoff Barrow’s label, Invada Records.
At the start of the COVID-19 lockdown Ben instigated a series of improvised live performances, broadcast worldwide through social media outlets, as a means of sharing new
and original Blanck Mass material during trying times. The first of these was edited down to one long track, which will be released later this year on Blanck Mass’ Weirding Way label. Entitled ‘Mind Killer’, the digital release will be the full 46 minute long techno exploration. There will also be an extremely limited LP with the track divided into two parts.