Glaswegian four-piece Glassbooks are, by their own admission, the world's most inept band: the post-punk quartet came close to murdering each other when deciding on song titles; lead guitarist Adam Carrington required a swift rescue mission after he trapped himself in his own apartment; and the first message on their Twitter timeline has them down as a Caribbean pop-punk trio.

On top of this, album updates remained thin on the ground, tentatively scheduled releases were delayed, and more murderous sentiments were no doubt expressed during rehearsal sessions. What the above suggests is that Shieldface was seemingly as close to release as it was to collapse for quite a while. But while the period of delay between the recording of the album and its release may have initially been a problematic time for the band, the fact that it even exists at all is something to treasure.

Its eventual release in October last year, during something of a barren twelve months for post-punk, meant that its introduction to the world was more than timely. Being the first full release for the group with their current line-up, it was modestly self-distributed and passed under the radar quite significantly, but in a year so bereft of post-punk to cling onto, Glassbooks dug up their gem.

Over its duration, Shieldface marries the light with the dark and the clean with the distorted, and it's something special that Glassbooks have firmly in their locker. Drummer Rosie Murray contributes organic, natural reverb with her playing - the drums take on a live sound that's suitably spacious and leaves enough headspace for her bandmates to plug the gaps.

The opener, 'Trident', begins with Murray performing alone, a comfortably mid-tempo and neatly syncopated pattern before bassist Bo Hamilton joins in. The bass tone is deliberately dampened and sullen, and the juxtaposition begins to take form. It's also here that we discover Adam Carrington is especially adept at providing incredibly bright guitar tones when he's not locked in his own flat. He's capable of making songs soar, and that's exactly what 'Trident' does: after its reserved beginnings, with Carrington providing a subtle arpeggiated lead guitar line, it explodes into life for its final act.

As vocalist David Escudero King sings "I press on my temples with open palms," the frustration in his voice is palpable. The rest of the band hammer around him and pull the song upwards towards its finale. 'Hammerhead' immediately follows and is similarly explosive but from the off this time, with only brief passages of patient waltz-time there to break up play.

By the time 'Hammerhead' reaches its final notes, that sweet formula of combining dusky bass frequencies with a shimmering, hugely melodic top end has been successfully established. Glassbooks know their strengths and rarely do they deviate from them, but in the process, they manage to turn it into an engrossing game. That game: simply waiting for the next interpretation of their approach.

'Oh State Violence' begins with neat breakbeats and light guitar work but ascends suddenly into its stadium-sized final form just before the halfway mark; 'Rosa' has polite instrumental offerings, too, with subtle, melodic guitar lines acting as the support for a dark monologue detailing an incident in which a young woman is lost to a violent river; 'Girls Own the Void' develops the deliberately bleak and lonely bass sequence introduced in its predecessor, 'Prox' (produced and co-arranged by Chris McCrory of Catholic Action), into something much larger, and closes with the darkest dominant melody of the entire record.

The clear stand-out is 'Laika Monologue', however, and it's the finest showing off what Glassbooks and Shieldface both offer. Relaxed waltz-time guides the opening third, with Hamilton's warm bass carefully omitted until the second run around the first verse - it's dreamy. The introductory mood is then sliced up entirely by an abrupt burst into odd time. This sudden switch is the lifeblood of the song: the guitars immediately spark into life, and the drums strike out with intent, while impressively intricate guitar licks arrive once the rhythm straightens out to greet the song's climax. It contains so much information and variety but still comes in at under four minutes, and the excitement felt by the band simply for having composed it is palpable.

As much as Shieldface was the post-punk album we needed in 2016, 'Laika Monologue' is the post-punk song we deserved. Much like the album it belongs to, 'Laika Monologue' is an exercise in cohesive spirit despite generating so much diversity from limited materials. For the world's most inept band, Glassbooks have gone some way with Shieldface to proving the exact opposite. Their work may not stretch as far and wide as their quality deserves but their future material should still stand out, even if post-punk produces a triumphant before the decade is out.