The relationship between ritualistic drumming and consciousness alteration is an age old tradition stemming largely from the overlooked shamanic cultures of antiquity. It should go without saying that viewing the supposed "triumph" of Western materialism thought over the more "primitive" concepts of animism is a retardedly short-sighted way of oversimplifying...

The genius of Fuck Buttons has always been the duo's ability to put sounds on loop -- of creating and finding the nuances of that loop, while at the same time redlining the amplifiers into a moving wall of distortion. So when Benjamin John Power, one half of Fuck Buttons, decided to try his hand at a solo electronic effort under the moniker of Blanck Mass, the results were expected to be relatively the same. Less blatant dance music, more deep thoughts.

Going in with that mentality isn't doing Power any favors. The self-titled release is less Fuck Buttons noise and more a focus on the atmospheric qualities of his original group. The album opens with "Sifted Gold", a song that has waves of slight distorted electronics fading in and out, ebbing like the tide, with the actual sound of the tide in the background. Blanck Mass is harkening back to the originals of the ambient wave, more Eno than recent forays into distortion-driven music. While some songs like "Sundowner" and "Land Disasters" rely on distortion, the peak of the song never comes at the drop of a grand crescendo. Like most ambient songs, most of the songs never really peak on Blanck Mass, but that isn't to say that they are boring at all.

Listen to "Land Disasters" - DOWNLOAD MP3


This week's recommended picks! Go to the website for the Seattle International Film Festival for more details. Between Two Worlds A man returns to his homeland in Sri Lanka -- post its 26-year civil war -- to discover that the repercussions of war last far beyond wars themselves. SHOWTIMES Mon, May 24 @ 5:00pm...

Surfer Blood are a weird anomaly: they hail from West Palm Beach, FL, home of Jewish grandparents and all things octogenarian, yet they make refreshingly current indie-rock. The first single from Astro Coast, "Swim," has been all over the internet, with critics and bloggers gushing -- and deservedly so. It...

United Kingdom/Austria/Netherlands, 2006, 150 minutes, HDcam English Slavoj Zizek is one of the few philosophers I can think of who can so easily slide between schizophrenia and didacticism, two characteristic which basically sum up his new film, The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema. Unlike his last documentary, simply entitled ‘Zizek!,’ it becomes painfully...