“During the past few years, the intersection of the Venn diagram linking noise, electronica, and heavy metal has been improbably rewarding: From Ben Frost's irascible compositions to Author & Punisher's turbocharged industrial menace, from Tri Angle Records' cadre of crawlers to Vatican Shadow's damaged tumbles, from witch house's pop-bound menace to Demdike Stare's intricate pattern corruption, musicians working as magpies between those sometimes distant forms have made some of the most intriguing records of the still-new decade. The concept of such a mix isn't necessarily new, but it does seem particularly rewarding right now, due in large part to the finesse and subtlety that many such acts are affording the work.
For the last two decades, Lee M. Bartow has hovered near that nexus, making aggressive and often misanthropic noise-cum-industrial as Leech and Navicon Torture Technologies. During the last three years, though, he's worked under the name Theologian, inching closer toward that aforementioned common ground. This year, he's firmly made his claim by releasing the EP Finding Comfort in Overwhelming Negativity and the LP The Chasms of My Heart, records that make his alliances and interests abundantly clear: Beneath a sculpted surface of static and sustained tones, Bartow has added massive beats and, at some turns, veritable (if rarely decipherable) singing. During the EP's ‘All I See Is You’, streams of noise wrap around each other in amoeboid motion as the concussive electronics of a drum machine hammer a cacophony into the sounds from below. In the background, Bartow slows and shifts his intonations, suggesting Jónsi Birgisson fracturing a Nitzer Ebb song into pieces only to sing behind the bedlam... Simple, stentorian percussion pounds beneath it all.”– Pitchfork
“I'd been waiting for this album, titled Finding Comfort in Overwhelming Negativity, to come out for what seemed liked an eternity. Sir Loren had mentioned in passing many months ago how good it was, and since I'm a big fan of Leech's (aka Lee Bartow) work (also of Love is Nothing, formerly of Navicon Torture Technologies, and founder and operator of the Annihilvs Power Electronix label ), this has been album I'd been anxiously anticipating since I first heard word of it. And needless to say, my expectations were high.