The Velvet Underground legend John Cale produced five of these tracks while the band produced the rest on this 1995 album. We have Sioux as chanteuse so The Rapture isn't as firmly in the rock tradition as their earlier work. It's rather a progression from their 1991 album Superstition in its focus on creating moods and sonic textures. The opener O Baby is pure pop, a lilting, swaying track with a lovely tune, while Tearing Apart is rockier but in a dreamy sort of way.
With its killer hook, shimmering guitar work and appealing arrangement - especially the vocals - the melodic Stargazer is one of the highlights. I love the mid-tempo rocker Fall From Grace that sounds so distinctly Banshees yet somehow unique and innovative too. There are also the brooding slower numbers that impress, like Forever with its percussive texture and the tender Sick Child. The Lonely One is an atmospheric ballad with a lilting rhythm, appealing instrumentation & spooky whispered male backing vocals. Highly atmospheric too is Not Forgotten with its massed guitars.
Mournful and atmospheric, the title track is a searing lament. The tempo shifts halfway through, unleashing Sioux's voice to transform it into a rousing anthem before it slows down again. Fans of their earlier work may not appreciate Siouxsie as a singer (instead of a howler or screamer) but for me her career followed a logical progression from the harsh, uncompromising debut album through the varied & underappreciated Join Hands to an ultimate mastery of timeless, quality pop-rock in the 1990s. These melodies are particularly strong and the lyrics of high quality. The Rapture is a fine album of great musical depth.