So has The Prodigy gone full circle? Well, in a way... Let me explain. “Invaders Must Die” marks a real return to form creatively, as well as through a fully rejuvenated line-up. It seems the back catalogue has been raided, the essence of the best of the albums squeezed out, with the resulting juices carefully mixed together to create a new, potent vision of The Prodigy, Mark 5. So, we have the rave samples and techno hysteria of “Experience”, combined with “Music for the Jilted Generation” beats and pieces; “The Fat of the Land” providing the punked-up attitude, and “Always Outnumbered Never Outgunned” providing... well not that much actually.
There are so many déjà vu moments through this set its incredible – is that the drum beat from “Voodoo People” I hear lurking in the background during opener “Invaders Must Die”? Is “Take Me to the Hospital”, simply “Out of Space” for the Noughties? “Vamp”, an original rave classic by Outlander,also features heavily on “World's on Fire”. Could this be a case of running out of ideas?
“Omen” is classic Prodigy – you know it as soon as the rave sirens kick in after three seconds. Being this is 2009, and not 20 years earlier, everything is obviously much more polished than back then, yet the energy is still there, at least in this track. A deserved single – and up there with their best. “Colours” is another track that delivers, and also couldn't have existed on any of the other albums, being a true blend of all the best bits: punk, rave and electro in hi-energy clash shocker! “Run with the Wolves” is another fine moment – a Keith Flint-led track, that goes a different route to that of “Firestarter”, but could still be seen as a distant relation. “Stand up” completes my faves, not just through Dave Grohl's live drumming, but it simply makes you move – expect to hear this everywhere.
Some downsides though. “Thunder” isn't the maelstrom promised, more a whimper than a bang. “Piranha” also relies too much on screaming synths making it sound more like an 80:s horror movie soundtrack than a dance number.
Despite my original reservations at feeling like this album was more a rehash of old material than anything original, it is hard to ignore the fact that this is a party album, just like the majority of The Prodigy’s output that came before. So what if a few ideas have been revisited, revamped and re-hashed, when it comes down to it, they made the originals, laid the blueprint and blazed the trail – so why not reap some of the rewards? Listen to it, dance to it and love it, after all isn't that what rave was all about anyway?