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Ed Blaney is rescheduling the US tour for October. If you have any suggestions on venues the Fall might play in your area, please email him the contact info (email address, phone number, size of club etc.). Better yet get the club to email him directly. I've already covered the Boston area. He says they're planning about ten dates total.

He says the band are writing material for a new album, which'll be out at the end of the year.


Conway Paton:

Rob Ayling is currently reviewing the Cog Sinister release schedule - stay tuned for an announcement shortly. He would like YOUR HELP to find out what there's a demand for, especially in the way of live archive material. Please email me with what you'd like to see released - time period/tour/band lineup: c.paton@xtra.co.nz



2G+2, out now on Action Records (cat# TAKE18CD) comprises nine tracks recorded at the Nov. 2001 US gigs, plus three studio tracks (New Formation Sermon and Distilled Mug Art are from the withdrawn "The Present" EP; I Wake Up in the City was on the Flitwick freebie).

1. The Joke
2. New Formation Sermon (studio)
3. My Ex-Classmates' Kids
4. Enigrammatic Dream
5. I Wake Up in the City (studio)
6. Kick the Can
7. F-'Oldin' Money
8. Bourgeois Town
9. Distilled Mug Art (studio)
10. Ibis Afro-Man
11. Mr. Pharmacist
12. I Am Damo Suzuki

sleeve by Pascal Le Gras

You can get the CD direct from Action for £7.99 at http://www.action-records.co.uk/cgi-bin/tame/Action/action_f.tam. Don't forget to claim the Fall website 10% discount - just make a note in the comments box when ordering online.


I stand to be corrected but here's where I believe all the tracks come from:

01. The Joke (3:47) live Seattle, Tuesday 20 Nov. 2001
02. New Formation Sermon (2:03) studio
03. My Ex-Classmates' Kids (3:25) live New York, Sunday 25 Nov. 2001
04. Enigrammatic Dream (2:08) live New York, Sunday 25 Nov. 2001
05. I Wake Up In The City (4:39) studio
06. Kick The Can (1:59) live New York, Sunday 25 Nov. 2001
07. F-'Oldin' Money (4:23) live New York, Sunday 25 Nov. 2001*
08. Bourgeois Town (4:44) live New York, Friday 23 Nov. 2001
09. Distilled Mug Art (3:32) studio
10. Ibis-Afro Man (3:45) live L.A., Thursday 15 Nov. 2001
11. Mr Pharmacist (2:22) live New York, Friday 23 Nov. 2001
12. I Am Damo Suzuki (6:41) live L.A., Thursday 15 Nov. 2001
Total time: 43:35

* about 1 min 15 - 1 min 20 has been edited out of F-'Oldin' Money at the 3:56 mark, a mostly instrumental section towards the end of the Kick The Can reprise. Why, who knows? Maybe MES didn't like Ben's macho guitar-hero solo. It's a rather obvious cut too, not on the beat! I reckon I could've made a less evident join on cooledit with the kids screaming in one ear and the TV blasting in the other.

a few reader reviews:

  • So, what's the general verdict on 2G+2 then? My verdict is really fucking shite - dull live versions of fairly crappy songs (apart from Damo Suzuki) and a (very small) handful of uninspired studio songs, one of which is the same as one of the live ones but with different words. And on these songs MES sounds like he's just a bit too close to the mike, as if he's trying to eat it. I'll listen to the studio songs again and may reconsider, but the live ones can fuck right off. Really. I'm totally sick of live Fall albums.
  • You know what, it's not that bad really. The live ex-classmates/enigrammatic > studio version of wake up in the city was a bit jarring though. Quite like Distilled Mug Art. And one of the new ones had a line about a rabbit in the headlights or sommat like that - shoulda been a feckin' squirrel! Sleeve notes just say LA/New York/Seattle, so I'll have to dig out all those gigs tonight to see which tracks come from where. Ibis-Afro is obviously from LA, with our man Ed going on about "I live in LA..." before MES takes the mic.
  • I'm not buying it. Life's too bloody short.
  • Saw the expected slaggings off on the news site, have to say that I partly agree (sadly). Although the live versions of The Joke and Damo Suzuki are fantastic, other live tracks vary between merely decent 'Ibis-Afro' and 'Mr. Pharmacist' and pretty shoddy - all the rest. The studio tracks are mostly naff (except Wake Up In The City), and the live Enigrammatic Dream is a waste of what was a pretty good live track (except not at this concert). Cover art is rather nice, but typos and mis-credits spoil the rest of it. R.Jonson (sic)did not write Bourgeois Town, and Spencer wasn't the drummer! But can't complain too much when it was £8, and it is certainly listenable... [Spencer was the drummer at all the US gigs - Stefan]
  • To be honest the most recent Fall album I have is Kurious Oranj, mainly because I'm cheap and the Beggar's Banquet releases are the only ones I find in bargain bins. Anyway, apart from Damo Suzuki I can't compare any of the live recordings with album versions and I don't know how it compares with their recent albums. The recording on some of the live tracks isn't great, most of them are listenable but nothing special. I found Damo Suzuki disappointing compared with the album version and Ibis Afro-Man just irritated me. It's redeemed by three great studio recordings, plus decent live material like F-oldin' Money and Bourgeois Town. It's not a classic, but there's an EP of great music on the disc and it's well worth the £8.
  • Not bad at all, better clarity than many live recordings. You can tell it's recorded in the USA with the whoops and oh yeah's from the audience whereas we tend to be a bit stuffier over here!
  • £8 in the UK, Euro18 in Ireland?? (& in the shops before scheduled UK release date). The voice over on I Wake Up In The City would be more at home on My Ex-Class Mates Kids. Prefer this version of 'Ibis Afro' to that on AYAMW. The Joke's good (powerful). Like Kick The Can also. Pharmacist is weak as is 'F-oldin' Money' (& tired of hearing them playing it live). Sound quality is good for a live Fall album. Bar I Wake Up In The City though the two studio tracks offer nothing to suggest a break away from the same tired set lists (Joke/Foldin'/etc...) being reproduced at the next round of *50 minute* Fall gigs.
  • The truth be told we'll pretty much go for any new Fall material, including the new hybrid release. But this is a disappointing excercise in selling a single that was scheduled but never released; they even omitted the better songs from the last album for the covers. The annoying thing is it could have been so much better; some stuff from the last two albums, plus the studio tracks at the end. At 43 mins, or thereabouts, it just about gives VFM, but it seems sad that all the comments expected something quite average, and that everyone seems pleased that it's not a complete bummer.
  • Actually this is a slightly better album than the ridiculous "missing winner"-shite. features the most tasteless heavyrock-guitarsound ever heard on a fall lp. very funny. forget the some-tracks-live/some-tracks-studio-thing, just hear it as one loud concert. spiritwise it reminds me a bit of "burnside on burnside" or those weird dylan-live-cd-singles that came out some time ago. not bad at all.

City Life, Manchester, 26 June - 11 July, 2002:

Record companies seem to have given up trying to release Fall singles - instead we get 2+2G: a three track EP padded out with nine live tracks from last November's US tour. It's the same mixed bag you get at any Fall gig, ranging from the spare poetry of 'Enigrammatic Dream' right down to the embarrassingly puerile 'Ibis Afro Man' - the worst song in The Fall's 25-year career. Of the new stuff, the amusingly raucaus 'I Wake Up In The City' features a lengthy Kate Hoey sample, while 'New Formation Sermon' borrows from another unexpected source: Prefab Sprout's 'Faron Young'. Passable enough for hardcore fans, but non-initiates should try 2000's studio classic The Unutterable if they want to celebrate Mark E's jubilee. 5 stars out of 10.


upcoming releases:

According to Amazon UK the 2xCD (downgraded from a 3xCD box?) "Totally Wired" (Essential #CMETD461) has been pushed back to July 15. Tracks are:


(sorry about the CAPS - I didn't feel like rekeying it all)

Castle/Essential/Sanctuary also have "The Rough Trade Singles Box" 4xCD set (#CMGBX526) due for release on the same day:

The Singles Box Set
Sanctuary Records Group Ltd (Record Producer)
CMGBX 526 SET (4 CD)


The box will package the CDs in exact miniature replicas of the original 7" releases and includes a poster.


Thanks to Graham Coleman:

From "10 SEMINAL BANDS - That You Say You Love But Never Actually Listen To" http://www.viceland.com/issues/v9n5/htdocs/10.php

"Great band, right? “Mr. Pharmacist” is the jam, right? What about the other 99.9% of their songs? Have you ever heard that album they made up on the spot? The one where he goes, “I am curious orange, curious oh-rawnge”? What the fuck is that? Those guys suck. They’re one of those bands your big brother totes because nobody’s ever heard them before and they seem like some heavy shit. Like Brian Eno. Or Roxy Music. How gay are they? All these groundbreaking bands like The Residents or Throbbing Gristle or Captain Beefheart or Pere Ubu or Cabaret Voltaire are essentially nonexistent. Music critics always cite them as a huge influence but nobody’s ever heard them play a note. I wouldn’t be surprised if none of them even have any albums. I’m not going to look into it, though. I checked out Gang of Four, Love, and Frank Zappa after hearing how influential they were and all I heard was a bunch of gay weirdos going “pajama people, pajama people.” Fuck that."

The rest of the column is pretty funny, too.


Thanks to Kyle and That Pete:

In case you missed it, pitchforkmedia.com had an interesting article about bands that "don't gravitate toward a pre-existent commercial or stylistic niche." MES and the Fall are listed number 2.

"2. Mark E. Smith/The Fall: The Fall's first single declared "Repetition in the music and we're never gonna lose it." Almost 30 years later they (he: Mark E.) remain true to their autodidacticism. Smith has never been dissuaded of his belief in the primal power of the primal power of the primal power of the three R's: repetition, repetition, repetition. And while Malkmus has copied his splice and shunt lyrical style, Smith never stopped at style. His words are the perfect manifestation of the socio-aesthetic-political anger and meaning borne of a working-class British upbringing in a middle-class American world.



Something I forgot to post before, but Kyle also wrote me about an archived Marc Riley and the Creepers hour-long retrospective that Boston College's radio station (WZBC) broadcast last month. You'll need a fast internet connection to listen to the stream.



Stephen Bending has very kindly posted an mp3 of Mark's appearance on Bruce Dickinson's "Freak Show" (BBC 6FM "for freaks, rockers, headbangers and closet cases everywhere") from May 5, 2002.


Celine has put together a great Fall page full of Dutch and English press clippings and assorted Fall images at http://www.v-d-zijde1.myweb.nl.


Thanks to Peter Reavy for mentioning that John Peel's Radio 1 show has been added to the BBC's Radio On Demand player: http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/alt/johnpeel/index.shtml


Thanks to Michael Pinto for finding the story of the Bourgeois Blues:

From http://courses.essex.ac.uk/lg/lg432/Bourgeois.html:

The Bourgeois Blues
"Leadbelly" (Huddie Ledbetter)

Me and my wife, we went all over town
An' everywhere we went the people turn us down, Lord
In a bourgeois town, It's a bourgeois town,
I got the bourgeois blues, Gonna spread the news all aroun'

Home of the brave, Land of the free
I don' wanna be mistreated by no bourgeoisie, Lord
In a bourgeois town, It's a bourgeois town,
I got the bourgeois blues, Gonna spread the news all aroun' 

Well, me an' my wife, we was standin' upstairs
I heard a white man say "I don't want no niggers up there", Lord,
In a bourgeois town, ooh, bourgeois town,
I got the bourgeois blues, Gonna spread the news all aroun'

Well, them white folks in Washington, they know how
To call a colored man a nigger just to see him bow*
Lord, in a bourgeois town, mmm it's a bourgeois town,
I got the bourgeois blues, Gonna spread the news all aroun'

Tell all the colored folks to listen to me,
Don't try to find you no home in Washington DC
Cause it's a bourgeois town, it's a bourgeois town
I got the bourgeois blues, Gonna spread the news all aroun'.

 [*Alternate line: They chunk you a nickel just to see a nigger bow]

The Events behind the Song:

Huddie Ledbetter, born 1885 in Louisiana, was better known as Leadbelly. Perhaps the most influential folk-singer in 20th century American music - his great songs include Rock Island Line, Take This Hammer, Goodnight Irene, Pick a Bale of Cotton and Midnight Special, to name a few - he came to Washington in 1937, some years after being released from the infamous Angola Penitentiary in Louisiana, where he had been serving a life sentence for murder. In their biographical study, Charles Wolfe and Kip Lornell describe the genesis of the song, Bourgeois Blues:

"In June 1937, [Leadbelly and his wife Martha] went to Washington, D.C., in part to record more songs for the Library of Congress. [Folklorist] Alan Lomax was in charge of the session... and offered them lodging at his little flat near the Supreme Court building. Huddie and Martha spent the first night sleeping on the floor and were awakened by angry voices. Alan's landlord was at the downstairs entrance, shouting at Lomax, "You brought some niggers in my house? I don't want no niggers up there!" Lomax knew his landlord could bring the Jim Crow laws down upon him and reluctantly agreed to find Huddie and Martha another place to stay.

"This was easier to say than do. The Ledbetters had driven with [two white friends]... The party set out to find lodging. Huddie recalled, "We rode all around in the rain. No colored people would take me in because I was with a white man." To his astonishment, he soon learned that the mixed group couldn't even go into a place to eat - even to one catering to blacks. 'I had so many white people with me, he wouldn't let me in. But she told me just before I left, the colored woman did, that when I came back and didn't bring no white man, I could eat.'

At one point in the search, Barnicle was feeling especially bitter about the extent of Jim Crow in the nation's capital and complained, and the whole group began joking about what a bourgeois town Washington was. Huddie perked up. He didn't know what the word bourgeois meant, but his poet's ear loved the sound of it. When he asked Barnicle what it meant, and after she explained it, he was even more interested in the word. There had to be some way to use it - and the whole Washington DC trip - in a song. The end result was The Bourgeois Blues, a song that would become one of his most famous and that would gain fame as one of his more sincere, heartfelt protest songs... What emerged was a strong indictment of Washington, then as now living up to its nickname of 'the largest city in North Carolina'." (Wolfe and Lornell 1992:206)

Wolfe, Charles and Kip Lornell. 1992. The Life and Legend of Leadbelly. (Harper Collins)

Jeff Curtis:

"What *I'm* wondering is this -- Where exactly did MES get the idea for covering this song? My theory is -- from Tav Falco! If you look on the back of Grotesque, you will see MES standing near a record rack with a Tav Falco record pictured in it -- and Mr Falco also did a pretty cool cover of this song on his album, "Behind the Magnolia Curtain". So... That is my theory, and it is mine, such as it is. Ahem."



The new punk issue of Uncut (old NME reprints from the early years) has got some Fall stuff in it: some single and ep reviews ("bingo masters-") and a two page article with band photo.


Tom Hingley (ex-Inspiral Carpet) and the Lovers (including Steve and Paul Hanley) tour dates:

June 27 sheffield boardwalk 01142799090
Aug. 23 scooter rally isle of wight 07774893178
Sept 14 fibbers york

Also Tom says: "more dates to come, call 07973861540 for more details."

July 3 , 2002

This is the latest news and gossip off FallNet for those with weak stomachs.

If you have anything to say, you can mail Stefan, but you can't mail the FallNet mailing list direct anymore. To subscribe to FallNet, send mail to fallnet-subscribe@ yahoogroups.com. The Freedonia list is out of action.

ta to biv for this

Recent news...

13jun02 2G+2, Wire 25th anniversay piece, custom Fall gig, PDFs of four old articles
16may02 Blackburn, London, ATP gig reviews, BBC 6FM, Sydney 1990 int., French cartoon
19apr02 US tour cancelled, Mojo article, Select (June 91), bits & pieces
19mar02 Euro tour reviews, Record Collector interview., Wire review, new Fall discog., misc.
13feb02 comp results, Athens review, Bournemouth Runner, Pan
13jan02 Timekode, Pan, bad German translations, NME 2/25/89 interview
02jan02 album reviews, ancient Usenet refs
12dec01 MCR gig reviews, album reviews, Pan
28nov01 mammoth US tour edition
13nov01 first batch of AYAMW reviews, London Forum gig reports
5nov01 Euro gig reports, Knitting Factory Knotes interview
19oct01 UK gig reports, studybees interview
30sep01 tour / booking details, 1979 fanzine interview
9sep01 not much
28aug01 Flitwick single, 82/83 gig pics
27jun01 Faustus
31may01 Dublin pics, Cash for Questions, Guardian interview
29apr01 IR, UK gig reviews
9apr01 NL gig reviews
3mar01 Dublin gig, Invisible Jukebox
28jan01 World Bewitched details
1jan01 some ace Castlefield pics
19dec00 more reviews
1dec00 tour reviews, crap interviews
10nov00 Unutterable reviews
21oct00 Stanza festival, HighSmith Teeth, comedy dogs
11oct00 RFH reviews, new Cog Sinister releases
12sep00 DOSE interview, Fall calendar
22aug00 Portugal, Manchester gigs 
9aug00 bits & pieces
23jul00 Psykick Dance Hall, Pure As Oranj details, Triple Gang reviews
9jul00 few bits
20jun00 Ashton, Hull, Middlesbrough, Glasgow, Edinburgh reviews, old Volume piece
30may00 LA2 reviews
22may00 few old LP reviews
2may00 bits & pieces
24apr00 TBLY #19 details, Prop details
8apr00 more Leeds reviews. WSC interview, other interview snippets
26mar00 Doncaster, York, Leeds reviews, BravEar interview (plus others)
14mar00 various reviews, old Liz Kershaw i/view
24feb00 Past Gone Mad details
13feb00 few bits & pieces
30jan00 tour details, Tommy Blake stuff
20jan00 TBLY #18 details, Hanley in Mojo
10jan00 Dragnet doylum, New Year message, etc

Old stuff: Nov 1997 - Dec 1999