The clichis about [a]Prolapse[/a] are legion. They’re mental. They’d rather have a fist fight than a hit single. There being no smoke without fire, to varying degrees they’re all true. Because listen to their fractured muse, and it’s hard to believe that stimulants – alcohol at the very least – aren’t partly responsible.
What tends to get lost in the stereotypes, though, is what a mesmeric band they can be. If it was needed, ‘Ghosts Of Dead Aeroplanes’ is further proof. For starters it’s not quite as abrasive as usual. In fact, songs like ‘Essence Of Cessna’ seem positively cute on first listen. But don’t worry, they’re just lulling you into a false sense of security, before the conflicting asides of singers Mick Derrick (he of the Irvine Welsh jabber) and Linda Steelyard (clipped, posh, quietly disturbed) make you wake in the night and wonder just why they are listing every type of footwear they can think of.
If the vocal dynamics remain the same though, musically this is a leap forward. Odd bits of the clattering art-punk they’ve patented in the past surfaces on the sublimely deranged ‘Government Of Spain’, but elsewhere they’re pushing hard into the territory of Stereolab and Joy Division. Which means songs like ‘Fob.com’, ‘After After’ and ‘One Illness’ are still full of dissonance and chaos, but they drive hypnotically into your soul, reeling around one note and a driving, relentless rhythmic assault until you submit gladly.
The drunken, ramshackle clichis might persist, but the reality is infinitely more interesting. [a]Prolapse[/a] are mavericks making ever more exciting and innovative music. If only more bands were drinking from the same cup.