"Leviation have been kicked off"

Melody Maker, March 28 1992 (p. 5)


LEVIATION have been kicked off The Fall's tour after just three dates, claiming that Mark E Smith called them "a bunch of fucking crusty poofs". Smith is denying the allegations, which allegedly occurred during an argument between The Fall's singer and Levitation's sound engineer.

The trouble began on the early dates of the tour. Smith claims that Levitation were taking up to an hour and a half each night to soundcheck and were using too much dry ice during their set. Matters came to a head on the third date of the tour, at Leicester Polytechnic last Monday (March 16). During a backstage altercation before the show, Smith allegedly tried to pick a fight with members of Levitation. When they refused his invitation, he allegedly said: "You might as well pack your bags now and fuck right off."

When contacted by a spokeswoman for The Fall, Smith said he was provoked by Levitation's Terry Bickers and alleged that the Levitation guitarist threatened "to take his eye out".

A statement issued by Levitation says that "even as fans they found it impossible to work under Smith's oppressive regime". "We're not into character assassination, but we couldn't work under the atmosphere he was creating," Levitation guitarist Christian Hayes said. Their manager, Biddy Nolan, added that the band were "disgusted and upset with Smith's attitude". The Sandmen have now taken over as support group on the tour. Moose and Max also appear at the Fall's Brixton Academy show.