The Fall
Re-Mit


3.4
great

Review

by Joseph Viney STAFF
June 15th, 2013 | 23 replies


Release Date: 05/13/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Vocal testaments of M.E.S.

Even if you’re not a fan of The Fall, you can’t help but admire their obdurate longevity. After nearly 40 years of piss ups, bust ups and *** ups, Mark E. Smith and his cast of Jonestown-esque musicians are still here and wreaking havoc.

Seasoned Fall aficionados (this writer included) like to play a spot of ‘Fall Bingo’ when reading the latest reviews. Cards are usually marked with any of the following phrases ‘always different, always the same’, ‘John Peel favourites’, ‘curmudgeon’, ‘revolving door’ and a few others besides. In essence, most reviews centre not on the music but on the recycled goo that has dripped from website to magazine to ‘paper since the turn of the century.

So, in the interests of trend-bucking, what can be gleaned from Re-Mit? As with most Fall records, any lessons or points of interests make themselves known after a few repeat listens.

It’s no secret that Smith has become even odder as the years have passed. While some of his lyrics border on the downright mad (“Dear spider, hello spider, help me spider” from “Kinder Of Spine” for example), there are moments of clarity that call to mind the gothic horror overtones of older tracks like “R.O.D.” and “Spectre Vs. Rector.”

“Hittite Man” tells the tale of a “pilgrim out of mind, out of death and debt” that precedes a chilling summation: “you do not exist.” Elsewhere, “Loadstones” is choc-stocked with Lovecraftian narration: “And at that dark sunset, my brother and I…we walked the path far from the tower. A light sea breeze ruffles the blood. Skin is bleeding.” The past two decades have seen one detractor after another look to knock Smith off his perch, but the evidence shows that he still has a keen eye for a story.

The current line-up, the longest in the Fall’s history (whoops, there’s one for the bingo players…), have obviously benefited from such unprecedented stability. Pete Greenway (guitar) makes with some decent, understated riffs on “Jam Song” and “Jet Plane”. The rhythm section, Dave Spurr (bass) and Keiron Melling (drums), are as sturdy and hard-hitting as ever. Smith’s wife, Elena Poulou (keyboard), is the perfect foil to his garbled weirdness; her sultry voice and slabs of electronic noise bringing a distorted, askew sense of femininity to proceedings.

Re-Mit, while able to hold its own in some quarters, is not the best of The Fall by any stretch. However, some of the strange humour and twisted narratives, sorely lacking from their last release Ersatz G.B., are back. It takes a good, interesting group to keep you guessing, and with 30 or so LPs to their name, The Fall always make you wonder what’s coming next.



Recent reviews by this author
Morrissey World Peace Is None of Your BusinessArchie Bronson Outfit Wild Crush
Manic Street Preachers FuturologySweet Apple The Golden Age of Glitter
Parquet Courts Sunbathing AnimalSKATERS Manhattan
user ratings (10)
Chart.
3.2
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
JViney
Staff Reviewer
June 15th 2013


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.4

Extra reading: Live review I penned from their Liverpool gig on May 10th...

http://www.peterguy.merseyblogs.co.uk/2013/05/the-fall-evil-blizzard-the-tem.html

jefflebowski
June 15th 2013


8247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

there's something slightly cynical about the fall's output recently, you feel they could just churn out this kind of angular garage-rock with mark ranting inchoherently over the top for the next 50 years or more

Digging: Shellac - Dude Incredible

ethixx
June 15th 2013


1170 Comments


great review, recently just got into grotesque and it ruled
probably will check this out wayyy down the line but it's cool to know they're still releasing stuff

JViney
Staff Reviewer
June 15th 2013


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.4

jefflebowski - Yeah, I agree to a point. I'm willing to extend credit to Smith/The Fall because a) I'm a huge fan and always will be, b) the majority of their back catalogue is staggeringly good and c) the guy's in his mid-50s and has a nearly four decades of booze and drugs constantly in his veins.

ethixx - Are you new to them? I could give you a little list of what to check out in a certain order if you're interested. And yes, leave this record until near the end.

ethixx
June 15th 2013


1170 Comments


yes, i'm and new to them and please do!! that would be awesome

JViney
Staff Reviewer
June 15th 2013


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.4

Ok, so the ones that any Fall fan would cite as 'must haves' are:

This Nation's Savings Grace
Hex Enduction Hour
Perverted By Language
The Unutterable (my personal favourite)

Then I would move on to things like:

Slates, Slags, Etc.
The Infotainment Scan
The Wonderful & Frightening World Of The Fall
Levitate
The Real New Fall LP

After that you've got the...stranger releases (with a tendency to coincide with Smith's increase in alcohol/drug abuse):

Cerebral Caustic
Light User Syndrome
Code: Selfish

I could go on all day, frankly. I'd say check out Live At The Witch Trials (their debut), Dragnet, The Frenz Experiment & Extricate. If you're looking for a complete overview of most of their history, then try and get a copy of their six-disc Peel Session boxset, which is just outrageously good.

I know that's a lot to take in, so if you need any help/advice then just leave a message on my profile or whatever.

ethixx
June 15th 2013


1170 Comments


you rule, man. thanks a ton - i'll probably check the "must haves" out as soon as possible.. not a lot to take in at all but i definitely appreciate it.

clercqie
Contributing Reviewer
June 16th 2013


6451 Comments


Mr. Viney, I like your reviews!

Digging: Thom Yorke - Tomorrow's Modern Boxes

JViney
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2013


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.4

Thank you!

jefflebowski
June 16th 2013


8247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

no love for grotesque? you've pretty much covered the best of the rest though

and of their new stuff, your future our clutter is pretty good/it has 'bury' on it

AliW1993
Contributing Reviewer
June 16th 2013


7343 Comments


Good work as ever Viney. Still not heard this, might get on it tomorrow.

You don't hear many good things about The Fall live nowadays, but I saw them at a festival last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. Having said that, I don't think I've ever been so drunk in my life, so I probably wasn't in a fit state to judge :p

jefflebowski
June 16th 2013


8247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

i'm sure you were still significantly less drunk than mark e smith however

InfamousGrouse
June 16th 2013


3514 Comments


the day The Fall call it a day will be the day the universe implodes

Digging: Harry Nilsson - Nilsson Schmilsson

jefflebowski
June 16th 2013


8247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

when the universe does implode i predict mark e smith will be the last entity standing

JViney
Staff Reviewer
June 16th 2013


322 Comments

Album Rating: 3.4

jefflebowski - Left off Grotesque as he'd mentioned it already. If I was feeling up to it I'd rank them all in order but...

Your Future Our Clutter is a decent shout. Bury is a fucking behemoth of a tune, but I think our friend is best getting to know the classics prior to the late period stuff.

Ali - Thanks as ever. Yeah, the Fall are pretty hit and miss live. Think I've seen them about 12 times now. It's about 50/50 on good vs. bad shows. Last time I saw them (the link in my first reply) was the best I've seen them for a long time. Worst I've seen was Bolton Town Hall about three or four years ago. Paid £17 a ticket, only to realise the venue had no ticket checkers or any staff at all. Then they came on late and stunk the place out. Awful. Only salvation was the first ever airing of Tommy Shooter.

Sanders
June 17th 2013


2352 Comments


It's not a proper gig until you break a rib

Sanders
June 17th 2013


2352 Comments


also "Bolton Town Hall"

that was your first mistake

Sanders
June 17th 2013


2352 Comments


triple post but good work on both the review and the gig report pal

EaglesBecomeVultures
June 17th 2013


5245 Comments


sweet band

Digging: The Rural Alberta Advantage - Mended With Gold

jefflebowski
June 17th 2013


8247 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

'jefflebowski - Left off Grotesque as he'd mentioned it already. If I was feeling up to it I'd rank them all in order but...'

fair enough then, that'll teach me to skim the comments



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy