I made this little overview for the Best Ofs thread recently if it helps!
For me and many others in the 80s & 90s, The Fall and Mark E Smith were always part of our lives. For us who read the NME & Melody Maker and listened to John Peel. I just took it for granted that Mark E Smith would always be around. This makes me sad.
Fuck! Gutted I never got to see him but he’ll live forever.
A true original
Yeah I’ve not listened beyond 50000 Fall Fans tbh but I’ve very much been meaning to get stuck in. It’s a shame this is the catalyst really
Saw them three times along the years, Blindness was one motherfucker of a tune live! My favourite memory of MES though will always be watching him trying to eat a bacon and egg bap for breakfast one morning at ATP and covering himself in it
RIP. I remember seeing The Fall at the Cartoon in Croydon around 12 years ago. One of the most memorable gigs I’ve been to.
Shit… absolute genius.
Really gutted about this.
One of the greatest bandleaders of all time. He forged and reforged the sound of The Fall over and over again with each new batch of musicians, despite having no discernible musical ability of his own (in the conventional sense). Inspirational figures of his kind don’t come around very often and we may never see another in our lifetimes.
I saw them play live several times around the Extricate / Shiftwork era, and to be honest they weren’t that great (workman-like is probably a fair description). I regret that I never caught them during the 2000s when they seemed to gain a fresh impetus. Ah well…
I mentioned on old DiS (a comment that sparked the bands Top Trumps thread) that I think that by certain measures The Fall are the greatest band there has ever been.
So glad I got back into them seriously around Your Future Our Clutter (a late career masterpiece) and caught them live a bunch of times over the past few years. They (ie, he) could be a deeply frustrating experience, but it was never once boring. In the words of John Peel, ‘They are always different; they are always the same.’
The Fall is the same age as I am - fucking actual hell…
They’re the same age as me too.
Would be interested some of these books if you could recommend some to me?
They did say they’d finished 7 new songs before Christmas when they weren’t able to tour so hopefully there’s one last album/EP to come.
personally I would recommend The Fallen by Dave Simpson, where he tries to track down as many members as possible and gets loads of wonderful anecdotes out of them, and The Big Midweek by their old bassist Steve Hanley, an incredible first hand account of 20 years in the band.
i still have Brix Smith’s book The Rise, The Fall and The Rise on my shelf, signed, waiting to be read. I think I’ll get stuck into it this week.
Smith’s own autobiography Renegade is a pretty good laugh but a lot less substantial than the others.
dunno if bornin69 has any others to recommend on top of those, i hope so.
Just heard on Newsnight of all things. He really was a unique talent (and I think unique is overused). The Birmingham School of Business School almost made me feel warmth towards a place I largely despised for ten years.
The Brix Smith book is pretty good. Really have to get the Dave Simpson book. He’s written a nice piece on the guardian tonight.
i find that a lot of Fall live videos from later years on youtube and stuff sound a bit shit but when you’re there it always sounded pretty great.