Wheel Of Fortune – Protomartyr

Noise Noise Noise. I love it. This new tune from officially weird weirdos Protomartyr invokes the ghosts of The Fall’s Mark E Smith and worryingly (because he’s not dead) Nick Cave. There’s feedback, gloomy thudding, verbose spoken word bitterness and (in a glorious twist of events) a featured artist who is neither Mark E Smith nor Nick Cave but just as legendary in indie circles.

The special guest is Kelley from The Breeders. She pips in with backing vocals and raises the stakes further. That’s no mean feat (pun entirely frikkin’ intended) among this cluster of sound clashes. Sound clashes which flow in different directions like a dinghy in a storm from one moment to the next. Fuzzed out squealing gives way to creepy chorals and pianos lilt into feedback guitars, while the whole thing sort of flops about like it needs putting back in the water.

While Joe Casey confronts the human condition like it just spilled his pint, spitting out phrases like;

‘Pulling yourself up by your boots straps is impossible’

Kelley chimes behind him with the refrain;

‘I decide who lives and who dies’ 

It’s visceral stuff. Unnerving and exciting like seeing a fist fight erupt just outside your personal space. I was compelled to play it again as soon as I first heard Wheel of Fortune even though it made me feel a little queasy.

Lyrically I think the song does a pretty good job of describing itself with this line;

‘A man with a gun and a deluded sense of purpose’

Come on in. The water’s lovely.

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5 thoughts on “Wheel Of Fortune – Protomartyr

  1. First encountered these guys when a buddy of mine (deep in the throes of graduate school applications) sent me the song A Private Understanding last November. What an interesting Thanksgiving that was. I love how you write they “confront the human condition like it just spilled his pint”–excellent choice of words, and so true.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ive been really enjoying the noise these guys make. I got into them when complexdistractions posted about their latest album… amazing stuff. I think maybe there was a suggestion that it sounded like Leonard Cohen if he’d been sharing a flat with a disgruntled Nick Cave.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. No worries, Steve. JH there has introduced me to some albums and artists I’d never heard of… pretty high hit ratio, too.

        Liked by 1 person

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