Rejoice! The end of this bizarre social experiment is coming to an end. On the horizon, if you squint, you might be able to make out the silhouette of festivals, summer BBQs and, yes, pubs. But we’re not out of the woods yet, and even when we are, what kind of world will we walk back into?
Listening to Commentating on a Massacre (CoaM), the third release from Statue Stance – it’s hard to picture anything other than a fever dream of a post-apocalyptic society. The duo – comprising Blackpool rapper Amos (AKA Rambutan) and up-and-coming producer Hooper Stax – paint a vivid portrait.
It’s a world in which kindness is a weakness and every bar comes loaded with more layers than a Matryoshka doll.
Amos’ snarling delivery drips with genuine anger. His flow is brutal but seamless, like a rusty chainsaw revving inches from your face.
‘Opium Waterfall’ feels like Charles Manson on a psychedelic trip narrated by Albert Camus. ‘Rib Tickle Carnivorous’ is akin to watching Eraserhead reinterpreted by Brotha Lynch Hung after drinking a bottle of cough medicine.
In short, CoaM seems custom-made to bewilder and disorientate. Still, there’s something classically English about Statue Stance; a toxic blend of wry humour and gloomy cynicism. In the wrong hands, lines like: “When life gives you lemons, get a round of tequilas” could sound like the next ‘Live Laugh Love’. But delivered in Amos’ north-west accent, it feels more like a command than a light-hearted spin on an old proverb.
So what is it about? In truth, I have no idea. Statue Stance aren’t here to guide you through this world. Instead, you’re thrown head-first into a world of oblique idioms with obscure allusions.
It’s not just the semi-impenetrable, hyper-surreal lyrics that leave you reeling. It’s the unrelenting moody atmosphere conjured by Hooper Stax’s production. Each track feels like being submerged in a subterranean world of factory smog and smoke-choked back-alley bars.
Blending elements of straight-up boom-bap with jazz-samples reminiscent of ATCQ-era Q-Tip. From the exceptional deckwork of ‘Drama’ (courtesy of Si the Skint DJ & DJ P-Nutz) to the rolling piano loop of ‘Poltergeist Guide’, Stax’s touch lifts CoaM to a different level.
So whether you’re willing to dive into this world probably says more about you than the music. If you’re looking for the sunshine after a dark year, you won’t find much in Commentating on a Massacre to make you smile. But if you’re already too deep into the rabbit hole, Statue Stance could be the soundtrack to your apocalypse.
Commentating on a Massacre is out now on Northern Structure Records.