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190) The Fall - Levitate

Remember folks times these were tough for The Fall after Light User Syndrome, we had lost members and Mark was losing the plot, well now they have been hit by huge inland revenue bill and Smith is so out of control with his drinking and behaviour that Brix has had enough and quit before they enter the studio and after eleven years of being part of the best rhythm sections in the business Si Wolstencroft (a huge loss) has walked as well and Karl Burns was brought back again, he had been fired recently by Smith…are you keeping up? 

 

Ten Houses of Eve opens the record, and we have a more dance orientated electronic track with a lovely change in tone halfway through, good start.

 

Masquerade sounds of its time but is a solid drum and guitar song with electronic noises in the background and Mark’s vocal suits it well, two out of two, crisis, what crisis.

 

Hurricane Edward is all over the place and who decided that whistles were a clever idea, but then we obviously have a cover version, I’m a Mummy, and it’s a belter with a storming guitar and Mark sounds as if he is enjoying himself. We may have lost Si but thankfully the genius of Steve Hanley is still there as he dominates The Quartet of Doc Shanley, lets appreciate him as times running out sadly, he’s the best thing on Spencer Must Die as well. Jap Kid is a pleasant interlude and 4 ½ Inch has a guitar that seems to be fighting its way as everything crashes around, its bizarre and it’s the Fall.

 

Jungle Rock is a cover you don’t need to hear again but Ol’ Gang has banging drums and a clattering piano and over two minutes before Smith comes in clear as a bell. There is no point to Tragic Days, sorry it’s a band tuning up.

 

The same music from Jap Kid reappears for I Came and Stand and Your Door, doesn’t really do much. Levitate is probably the song that sounds most like The Fall on the album, love the speed up by the band at about one twenty in.

 

The album closes with Everybody but Myself it starts as a live recording, moves to the studio rather badly and Smith sings falsetto, it’s a mess but is worth your time.

 

And that’s the summing up of this. Things are a mess, so is this record but there’s enough to give us hope.

 

6.75/10

 

GIVE IT A STREAM: Ol’ Gang

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