The Fall – The Remainderer EP (Cherry Red)
EP – 10″ Vinyl
Out 9th Dec 2013
Hot on the heels of The Fall’s last studio album, the awfully well received Re-Mit, comes this, a new EP. Andrew Bardsley reviews.
Whenever new Fall music emerges, there is always some apprehension as to whether Mr Smith and his latest group of loyal servants still have it, whatever ‘it’ is.
The accompanying blurb to the Remainderer EP also raises a few eyebrows.
It is described as representing a ‘bridging point’ between Re-Mit, released in May this year, and their new full-length effort scheduled for release next year.
Coupled with the album title, it may be construed that the six-song effort was just the last remnants of those sessions cobbled together.
That may be the case, but The Remainderer carries on where the brilliant Re-Mit left off.
The title track is held together by Keiron Melling’s tribal drumming, led by Peter Greenway’s droning guitar work, but let down by some dodgy backing vocals.
Amorator! brings all the elements of the Fall at their best, very few musical ideas expanded to their limits to produce an incomparable three minutes of rockabilly.
Parts of Mister Rode are almost radio-friendly, except the ambling intro, and the menacing outro, which firmly limits its audience to BBC 6 Music, if we are lucky.
Remembrance R features a guest spoken word spot which investigates the anti-Fall concept – the reformation of aged bands, out for a big payday.
Imagine Mark and co. rolling out the greatest hits for a Glastonbury Pyramid Stage set. For a start, he says he is banned from the festival, a ban which was seemingly lifted for his guest spot with Gorillaz in 2010. (Which, by the way, I very much recommend if you haven’t seen it already that you do; Mick Jones of The Clash watching on in horror as Mark pulls his best amp messing trick is priceless.)
Say Mama / Race with the Devil is a tribute to his hero Gene Vincent, while Touchy Pad sees Mrs Smith, Elena Poulou’s typically abrasive keys come to the fore.
While it does not hit the heights of Re-Mit, which in this author’s opinion, was their best since 2005s Fall Heads Roll, it is enough to keep us happy until next year.
The current crop of Mark’s disciples are now the longest serving in the Fall’s history, with most recent recruit Melling joining in 2007.
You wonder whether Mark has gone soft, or conversely whether it is because they are constantly churning out excellent records, and that they are a force to be reckoned with in the live arena.
With this release, two shows in Leeds and London coming up and the promise of a new album next year, it is a good time to be a Fall fan.
The Remainderer EP is expected to be released on December 9th through Cherry Red Records. Order a copy here.
The Fall will play London’s Clapham Grand on Friday 15th November and Leed’s Brudenell Social Club on Friday 29th November.
All Words by Andrew Bardsley, who can be found on Twitter HERE.