A post-punk supergroup for the noisenik set, Githead features Wire’s Colin Newman, Minimal Compact’s Malka Spigel and Max Franken, and experimental sound artist Robin Rimbaud (a.k.a. Scanner). Of those component parts, Newman and Spigel undoubtedly cast the longest shadow. Profile is reminiscent of Wire’s A Bell Is a Cup … Until It Is Struck (1988); Newman’s solo releases, Commercial Suicide (1986) and It Seems (1989); as well as a select mining of the Minimal Compact catalogue. Considering that wedded bandmates Newman and Spigel have been collaborating heavily since Newman produced Minimal Compact’s 1986 release, Raging Souls, and that Profile is released on the couple’s own Swim label, it would be stranger if Githead’s output didn’t have that familiar feel.
Though not as melodically impressive or as visceral as much of the band’s work, there’s a lot to enjoy as Profile unfolds. “Option Paralysis” and “Wallpaper” fit the classic Newman mold, and Rimbaud’s presence is felt strongly on instrumentals “Antiphon” and “Pylons.” But it’s Spigel’s turn on the mike on “My LCA (Little Box of Magic)” that stands out. Her voice – cold and direct, but sweetened through brusque overdubbing – brings a buoyancy to the track’s clattering percussive rain and floating embers of guitar. For the minimal summation, just look to Newman’s lyrics: “They are articulate. They are here.”
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