Blood Money

Axis of Blood

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Blood Money's first album finds the trio of vocalist Ken Ueno and instrumentalists Tom Worster and Jon Whitney working in the realms of spooked-out, often anguished music that takes the admittedly vague term "dark ambient" as a starting point and pushes the extremes on both ends.. That may sound strange, but by the time the first vocal wailings and open-ended screaming start to emerge from the static-laden crumble of the opening "Russolo," one might be amazed at how well Blood Money is at both soothing and threatening a listener simultaneously -- easy listening this isn't. The whole album, consisting of five tracks, functions as a piece, songs blending into each other seamlessly over nearly an hour's length with variations on the basic mood initially set cropping up in a variety of ways. Thus "Following Thunder," the album's shortest song, also has its quietest drones at the start, though again Ueno's vocals, strained and unnerving, keep it from being something to easily drift away to. Meantime, the crackling zoned-out electronics of "April" have an unusually rising sense to them, recalling nothing so much as a modern version of the endless swell that concludes Pink Floyd's "Shine on You Crazy Diamond," but like that older track less reaching for the heavens than aiming for a cold, distant sky by means of withdrawal. A calmer midsection changes the tone of the track a bit, but not without leaving that earlier monumental impact.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
8:05
2
10:24
3
10:37
4
7:56
5
24:12
6
blue highlight denotes track pick