Your Future Our Clutter
At album number 28, or thereabouts, Mark E. Smith is showing no signs of giving up a muse that has served him admirably since he started making arch, anti-rock music more than 30 years ago.
Maybe it's his utter dislike of musicians that enables him to create such original music time and time again. Maybe it's his irascible temperament, allowing him to concentrate on his job rather than the people around him, that has given this singular talent such focus for the past 30-odd years. Whatever it is that has made The Fall such an obsession to two generations of indie fans, Smith (right) still has it in spades.
Opener OFYC Showcase comes as close as anyone can define to a typical Fall song but from then on the album goes way off track with Bury Pts 1+3, an almost Smiths-like riff-led track that has the main man berating the small Manchester satellite town. As the album progresses, it gets weirder - surf pop, electro noise, rockabilly (Smith's long-held passion) and psychedelia all jostle for position on this woefully too-short collection.
It's difficult to compare Fall albums against one another because Smith's unruly and obstreperous nature has ensured his band members have tended to leave in frustration after each album. This is believed to be the third or fourth with the same line-up (Smith rarely lets us know who's playing), a fact that is apparent in the tightness of the arrangements and general cohesion.
In the final track, the electronic epic Weather Report 2, Smith intones, 'I've never been called sir in my life.' That would certainly change if he visited this reviewer's home. All hail the master.