Invaders Must Die is 40 minutes of having your head battered by future nostalgia, serotonin levels twisted by feel-good horrorcore and your synapses snapped by whiplash attitude. It's the sound of The Prodigy mixing up genres, contorting the past and rewiring the future, ram-raiding through the tranquility of music's status quo like a blot on the landscape of England's dreaming.
The first thing you notice about Invaders Must Die it is how complete it sounds, a consistent collection of bangers all firing from the same cannon. The next thing you notice about Invaders Must Die is just how melodic it is. Not just melody in the vocal sense but in the heyday-of-hardcore keyboard-hookline sense. Yes, if The Prodigy have learned anything from the hugely successful live shows was that those old skool rave anthems still rock hard - and are every bit as iconic to their generation as punk was to the nation's forty-somethings.
So Invaders Must Die is awash with references to the free party generation, thundering along like the mother of all E-rushes, all hairs tingling, spine jumping and lips buzzing. But not a retroactive arms-in-the-air, water-sharing nostalgia trip, but a set fuelled by punk's saliva-dripping rabid snarl. Take 'Colours', the first tune The Prodigy recorded for this set with it's 1992 polysynth riffing that sounds like The Stranglers' 'No More Heroes' parachuted into the middle of a Castlemorton circa 1992. Or 'Thunder', the 21st century bastard child of the classic 'Out of Space.'
‘Take Me To The Hospital' finds Keith and Maxim flexing over a vintage Prodigy riff. Suitably rusted, distorted and in need of urgent medication it bites like the soundtrack to Dante's Inferno. While the live favourite 'World’s On Fire' resurrects a 'flaming' theme and applies it to a groove straight out second album 'Music for the Jilted Generation. 'Omen' and ‘Warrior’s Dance’ are both beamed straight into the moshpit from rave central, while 'Piranha' rips the threads from the back of 60's garage and beats it into the filthy gutters of modern urban life.
Any old skool bonhomie floating around the riffs of this album are quickly slaughtered by 'Run With The Wolves' where The Prodigy's self-assured, gang-minded campaign turns into a maniacal, nose bleeding, heads-against-the-wall warzone. With added drum-pounding energy supplied by Dave Grohl.
And finally Invaders Must Die delivers its last brilliant twist with ‘Stand Up’ a horn-led sunrise anthem that aches with the positivity of a new dawn, walking the line of a burning horizon with the swaggering look of satisfaction that only comes when you instinctively know you've achieved what you set out to do.
Cocky? Perhaps, but wouldn't you be if you'd seen off all of the invaders with your most complete album yet, the first for your own record label?
Invaders Must Die is the unique sound of The Prodigy, still trespassing after all these years, walking the path they've created for themselves. And with that free party attitude still breaking and entering where others can only dream of following.
01. Invaders Must Die
05. Take Me To The Hospital
06. Warrior's Dance
07. Run With The Wolves
08. Omen Reprise
09. World’s On Fire
11. Stand Up