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10) The Fall Dragnet

Released barely seven months after their debut Dragnet arrived with Mark E Smith now the only original member of the group and only Marc Riley surviving from the debut recording moving from bass to guitar. The legend Steve Hanley arrived on bass and managed to stay for nineteen years, read his excellent book, The Big Midweek, for an insight into the band.


Grant Showbiz is the producer, and the songs are less scratchy but not crisp, whether intentional or Showbiz lack of experience back then, who knows but I have always enjoyed Grant’s production work.


“Is anybody there?” sings Smith at the start of Psykick Dance Hall, we certainly are and it’s a strong start. A Figure Walks we can add as a Fall classic and Printhead has the lyric “Hey you horror face,” wonderful.


Before the Moon Falls has a throbbing beat throughout and Your Heart Out reminds me musically of Half Man Half Biscuit and is light and easy for The Fall.


Flat of Angles has a lovely slide guitar throughout the whole song


Spectre vs Rector is nearly eight minutes of noise, the guitar at the start of the song sounds as if it’s tuning up and then Smith comes in and we have no drums until four minutes in and Smith ranting over the top, bizarre but good. Put Away ends Dragnet on a rockabilly note.


Two albums in and already an essential band.


8/10


GIVE IT A STREAM: A Figure Walks


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