Boomkat Product Review:
Stunning first outing on Yves Tumor’s Grooming label from John Bence; a thrilling 14 minutes of choral aggression and cavernous percussion sounding quite unlike nothing else right now...
Sepulchral, majestic, Kill is Bence’s sophomore release following a début for Nico Jaar’s Other People in 2015. Since then Bence has become a performer whose shows are “as abrasive as his works are astounding”, and he also recently appeared as part of Ashley Paul’s new ensemble on her striking new LP, Lost In Shadows for Slip.
Where Bence’s first record, Disquiet was a sort of palimpsest of re-scored composition, Kill finds him much closer marrying his live and composed work in a shocking three part movement for vocals, cello and bellicose drums that should leave no one uncertain of his talents. And in that sense it’s really not hard to hear why his music has been snapped up for release by Yves Tumor’s label, as the pair patently share a feel for music both fuelled by and navigating overwhelming emotion.
In the first part, he shapeshifts from something like prime, latter day Coil in a section of reverberant cello and ghostly keening, to erupt in Prurient like howls and psychotomimetic scat like a possessed, Welsh mining choir.
By contrast, the 2nd part is pure entropy, vocals layered and decaying into extremes of the soundfield, leading to a passage recalling Aíne O’Dwyer’s haunted situations, before a real denouement comes with the sublime closing coda of vaulted vocals into noirish strings and recursive industrial percussion.
Fresh from playing shows alongside Grouper, and with this new LP really sounding unlike anything else we've heard this year; we reckon you should be keeping a very close eye on this one...