Blanck Mass – In Ferneaux
LP – DL – CD
Blanck Mass recently released a new album In Ferneaux which he says ‘explores pain in motion, building audio-spatial chambers of experience and memory using an archive of field recordings from a decade of global travels.’ Recorded during isolation it’s two long pieces, Fighting Boredom have been listening, read what we thought below.
This doesn’t feel like an album of two twenty odd minute compositions, it feels like a journey, a trip across country with different places, environments and weather encroaching and widening out around you. It’s built on field sounds and is a reaction to the world being in lockdown and isolation. Phase I is for the most part calm. washes of electronic sound lead into tiny delicate sounds which lead back into weird outdoor noises, a lost windchime, digging and the wind. It does, at about four and a half minutes step up and turn into a racing car of electronics but then dissipates back into the smallness. It’s hopeful and uplifting and tangled. Even the drone feels like a warm breeze. It’s like a tangle of copper wire disappearing into an old cracked plaster wall.
As the noise moves towards Phase II it becomes harsher to listen to, built more around static and noise and discord. Which carries on into the second piece. This time the sound is built on feedback and static, a far more built up and concrete sound. The snatches of street conversation are clear but sampled over and under the noise it’s foggy, steamed over and misted up. There are moments of respite, of the small tunes coming through from phase I but for the most part it’s harsh, the sound becomes drums and screaming like a celebration, a parade, a crowd. But the feeling is that it’s just out of focus, just out of reach. The periods of calm increase and the static gets more sporadic, a choir, piano music and washes of electronic calm seep into the end of the piece and make it an altogether more hopeful and beautiful proposition. The last minute or so melds into what sounds like underwater and a boat gliding forwards. Hope, it has hope. An electronic master work highly recommended.
All words by Adrian Bloxham.