Fall News

News for November 1997 - last update 25 Nov 97


Reviews where available...

Newcastle Riverside (19)
Aberdeen Lemon Tree (20)
Edinburgh Venue (21)
Glasgow Garage (23)
Dundee Fat Sam's (24)
Oxford Zodiac (27)
Stoke Stage (30)
Leeds Irish Centre (December 1)
Liverpool Krazy House (2)
Portsmouth Wedgewood Rooms (4)
London Kentish Town Forum (5)
Cambridge Junction (7)
Norwich Waterfront (8),
Bristol Bierkeller (9)

Also possibly:
26/11  buckley

The Forum, Kentish Town, London: tickets 12 quid from 0171 344 0044 (credit card, probably booking fee).
Cambridge Junction 01223 511511
Bristol Bierkeller 926 8514
Stoke: The Stage, Hanley, Tickets £7.75 from Mike Lloyd Music, phone: 01782 207777
Oxford Zodiac.  (Number is 01865 726336. Gig details:  Tickets 9 quid in advance (in cash, in person!), 10 quid on
the door (if there's any left).  Doors open at 7pm, and the Fall will be OFF STAGE by 10pm - the Zodiac has an early curfew during the week. So get here early.)


MES is in Esquire this month. Apparently.

Another Gretchen Franklin? From Graham Coleman:

from the Complete Baseball Player Index

Doc Shanley
Career Statistics: Batting
Full Name: Harry Root Shanley
Bats: Right Throws: Right
Height: 6'0"
Weight: 174 lbs.
Born: in Granbury, TX
Major League Debut: Sep 15, 1912
Died: Dec 13, 1934 in St.Petersburg, FL


Cheetham Hill: Time Enough At Last, Free Range, Chiselers, US 80s 90s, Spinetrak, Idiot Joy Showland, Oleano, The Joke, Ed's Babe, Hit The North, White Lightning, Secession Man, Last Chance To Turn Around, Coliseum, Eat Y'self Fitter. Release Date: 17-Nov-97, supposedly.

Al Reynolds has seen it in The Netherlands:
By the way I saw Cheetham Hill in the shops on saturday. I'm not sure
if it has been out for a while in the UK. The cover is a browny affair,
probably a reproduction of a famous painting. It has a biblical,
dante-esque flavour to it (actually it reminded me a bit of the cover
of some swedish death-metal group - one of those bands called Godslapper
or Bogbrusher or Excoriator). The track listing didn't look particularly
rivetting - has anyone heard it?

Recent news....
971116 Manchester reviews, Loaded interview
971112 Band "back together", teletext interview
971110 NME report, various Dublin/Belfast reviews
971109 First Dublin/Belfast reviews, MES on Elastica album


From: Ken Sproat

The Fall at The Riverside, Newcastle 19/11/97

This was excellent. Much better than I had hoped. The audience was a
bit on the sparse side (around 200?) but following the South Shields
abortion, and the events on this tour I suppose it's not surprising.

The Fall took the stage just before half ten (by which time I had
convinced myself that they weren't going to show) and left just
before midnight after playing two encores. They opened with He Pep!
and the rest of the set was mainly from Levitate. I can't remember
the exact order but....

He Pep! - Unremarkable really, played to a torpid audience. Julia's
keyboard's were inaudible but Mark was coming across loud and clear.

Ten Houses - Seemed much shorter than the LP version.

Masquerade - Much slower than the LP version. This was brilliant.
Steve Hanley's bass was extra prominent all night but on Masquerade
it felt as if it was so low and loud that my internal organs (and
some of my external ones) were being liquified.

Hurricane Edward - Tommy read the opening speech from a sheet held at
arms length, Mark stood right at the back of the stage, back to the
audience, also appearing to read from a sheet. The music was a bit
shapeless and a few in the audience took the opportunity to go for a

I'm A Mummy - Last song in the main set. Anoraks may be interested to
know that Mark was singing Ol'Gang lyrics during this.

Doc Shanley - First song during encore. Instrumental only.

Spencer - I thought this was good but again it seemed to be a "let's
go for a piss song".

Jungle Rock - I didn't realise what this was at first because there
was a long keyboard intro. It got some of the crowd dancing though.

Ol' Gang - "Sound's like Sister Ray" said someone. Certainly
it was a completely different tune to the LP. Very good.

Levitate - Very intense. The sort of thing only The Fall can do.

Idiot Joy Showland - I think was played during the encore. Hanley
seemed to get it all wrong at the start (or was it everyone else?)
but by his grimace and shaking head I guesss he knew it was his
fault. Mark turned around and sang the first line directly at the
band. "Idiot groups with no shape or form..." He won't let it lie!
Lie Dream -I suppose it's good to hear the old tracks but The Fall
have moved on a long way since Lie Dream was fresh. The little twangy
solo guitar break seemed to be botched a bit by Tommy who made it
sound like a square dance. Hanley burst out laughing.

Glam Racket - The only song in the second encore. Went on for ages
and was superbly done.

M5 - A very long intro, with Mark sitting at the side of the
stage watching. Equipment problems meant that it was drums and
bass only for a long stretch. Again, excellent.

Behind The Counter - This track is always better live.

I am positive they played another track but for the life of me I
can't remember.

General impressions. - Mark didn't seem pissed, wasn't high, wasn't
low, just very focused. All the usual tricks - singing into
different microphones, wandering off stage, playing keyboards
without looking, messing about with Tommy's guitar et al. Tommy is
enthusiastic but seems to be learning as he goes along. He stood
abnormally close to Steve all gig. Moral support I suppose. I think
he looks like Gary Lineker as well. Steve looks like he has lost
weight and seems fitter for it. As ever, the foundation for all that
is Fall. Karl is starting to look like the transvestite in MASH
without the drag. Julia just seemed like an accessory. She didn't
seem to be enjoying the gig. Quite often I couldn't hear the
keyboards but her guitar work did give extra beef to some of the

For those sad fucks who note such matters, apart from taking his
jacket off during the first song, Mark did not change his gear once
and looks very nice in black.

I do hope this is not the last time I see The Fall but I get a
nagging feeling.....

Ken Sproat

From: Toby Blake
Subject: EdiGig

The evening began as Amber, her sister Tammy and I met fallnetter Garry
and non-fallnetter-but-Fall-fan Paul (Celtic fan) in the Black Bull.
Garry's much taller than his emails had previously suggested.  Old Firm
related banter was prominent.  A couple of drinks later and we wandered
off to the Venue.

It's quite a small place but seemed to be sold out.  We'd missed the
support band (Foil, apparently) - the Venue had a club due to start at
10ish.  We made ourselves comfortable at the back (coincidentally
beside the bar) while Garry and Paul negotiated their way further
forward.  This is the first time that I've watched a gig from the
back. I like it, I think I'm aging daily.

One pint later the band came on stage and launched into a slightly
slower than the album version of Masquerade.  MES followed after a few
minutes and lifted the hearts of the previously unenlightened with his
angelic voice.  Tammy in particular thought they were bloody awful.
It was the first time she'd ever heard them and maintained a somewhat
bemused expression.  But these people are heretics and their opinions
don't matter.  The sound was great - driving bass and vocals that were
loud and audible.  Much better than at the Cas Rock but maybe this was
because of MES's state.  He seemed sober and on pretty good form -
improvising lyrics and staying on stage for the whole time.  Fit and
working again?

Line up was Steve and Tommy (stage left), Julia on the right playing
keyboards and some guitar, Karl on drums and MES wandering round the
front.  The bass maestro was head bobbing in true style.

Rough set list is:

Lie Dream
Ten Houses
He Pep
Idiot Joy Showland
Pearl City
I'm a Mummy
Behind the Counter
Ol' Gang
Jungle Rock

Behind the Counter is so much better live than on record.  So is Ten
Houses - particularly the added drum and bass power.  Top notch.  Amber
enjoyed I'm a Mummy.  Idiot Joy Showland was great and Ol' Gang is quite
different live than on Levitate - much longer but maintaining a
relentless backing.  It was a pretty professional show - no walk offs or
other shenanigans.  Garry and Paul thought it was good but not
marvellous - that's Glaswegians for you.  The band were supposed to be
off stage by 10:15 (according to the sound bloke who didn't think they
were going to do an encore) but they came back at about 25 past and did
a pretty crappy version of Jungle Rock.  But it's a pretty crappy song -
turds like this can't be polished.

After the gig, Tommy was mingling about and Garry and I spotted Paul
speaking to him.  Undeterred by feeling stupid, we ambled over.  He
seems a nice bloke, from Glasgow but for some reason he sometimes tells
the press he's from Edinburgh.  He seemed quite pleased with the gig.
This of course is the second Fall member I've met.  As I've
name-dropped before, my friend Jamie's auntie is going out with Kenny
Brady, ex-Fall violin maestro.  Hooray.

We adjourned to the Black Bull for another couple of hours of drinking
while Garry and Paul ventured towards the bright lights of town in
search of a club (spurning the Venue's own Drum n Bass offering.)

Anyway, a really good gig.  It was nice to meet Garry and Paul and the
band seemed on top form.

Toby, going on a bit

From: Ewan Brown
Subject: Re: EdiGig

You're not the only ones to be caught out by the early start.  We wandered in
from the pub to discover the Fall were already on stage!  Fortunately this
was just the intro to Masquerade so we didn't miss too much.  I saw Foil on
telly last week and am consoling myself with the fact that I didn't think
much of them then (therefore they must be crap!).

The sound was indeed top notch, although I think it's permanently damaged my
hearing.  I've had tinitus all weekend.  I thought the Cas Rock performance
had a bit more life to it (and the friends I was with agreed) but each to his
own.  Although MES didn't disappear completely, he did sing the whole of
Levitate from offstage somewhere.

> Rough set list is:
> Masquerade
> Lie Dream
> Ten Houses

Spencer Must Die

> He Pep
> Idiot Joy Showland
> Reckoning
> M5
> Pearl City
> I'm a Mummy
> Behind the Counter
> Ol' Gang
> Levitate
> -
> Jungle Rock

Are you sure they did Jungle Rock.  I thought that Ol' Gang was the encore.
I agree that it was pretty crap, whatever it was.  Good gig overall though.


(taking cotton wool for my ears next time)
From: "Graham Wilson"
Subject: Glasgow Garage Gig

A brief review:

Troglodyte bouncers herded everyone away from the bar area which usually
signals the imminent arrival of the band, but then there was a very lengthy
delay with the crowd getting very restless and me beginning to fear the
worst.  Intro tape appeared to be from Mark's answering machine.

Setlist pretty much as per Toby's report of the Edinburgh gig. On the whole
it was really good.  Smith was quite focused and not drunk (although
suspicions of chemical mood enhancement were mooted).  He was even seen to
smile a couple of times.  Tommy looked very nervous whenever Mark was
wandering about near his amp, and the guitar volume took a bit of a dip near
the end but I'm not sure if this was Mark's doing.  Tommy has also gone to
the trouble of learning his spoken intro to Hurricane Edward off by heart
and doesn't have to resort to a crib sheet.

Fashion notes:  plain dark shirt initially, removed mid-set to reveal
curious Bacofoil-type garment, possibly being worn as a gesture of support
to under-fire Gary Glitter.

Foil aren't much to write home about.  Their last song was quite good on
account of it having a tune, not something that the rest of their oeuvre was
blessed with.

Overall it was much better than I'd expected and any fears of imminent Fall
demise have been banished from my mind.

From: "Graeme Park" <rpa1@cableol.co.uk>
Subject: Glasgow Garage Gig - Mark II

Sitting in the pub across the road from the venue....Container Drivers on
the jukebox, Guinness in hand, watching the punters slowly going in and
noticing that most have no hair. Fact. Everyone in the pub looks like a
Fall fan. Most of them turn out to be.

Enter venue....bollocks, don't get searched....tape recorder in house...as
gig progresses, really start to regret this situation.

Standing in bar prior to Foil taking stage, drunken man vomits copiously on
the floor. Wow! The human body can hold an amazing amount of fluid and
chicken lumps. The bugger has chosen the spot everyone wants to walk on. A
new sport is invented, guessing who's gonna stand in the big pile of sick.
Best moment so far, Yummy Fur man stands in pile of sick. Many sniggers.
Poor barman throws down the obligaotry cat litter/vomit cleaner upper stuff
and walks away, people still flock to stand in the spot.

Foil come on, less interesting than the pile of sick.

Hurly-burly men move us into the main hall, so we guess the Fall are coming
on in the next hour....intro tape..phone messages...rising
excitement.....the gig is busy things looking good.

Fall take the stage....a storming Masquerade....yer man Smith looking in
good form, miles better than at Motherwell last year. Not a bottle of sauce
in sight. At end of song, he looks at the huge "Garage" sign on the wall,
from where we stand it simply says "rage" he announces "Good evening we are
Rage".....launches into Spinetrack. The band are on top form tonight,
tight. Tommy is a damn good guitarist by the way...if he's learning on the
job as seems to be the case, he's due promotion.

Set List:
Lie Dream
Hurricane Edward
10 Houses
Hip Priest
I'm a Mummy
Idiot Joy  ------- silver spangly shirt makes an appearance!
He Pep!
Behind the Counter
Jungle Rock
Pearl City

No encore, as previously mentioned, there's no backstage area for them to
go to and it looks like they had to be off by 11. Saturday's Glasgow Herald
had a little blurb to the effect "can MES get through this gig without
wandering offstage?". He did wander behind the speaker stack on the sides
of the stage and went away behind the drums to steal Karl's drink at one
point too. Early on MES has fun playing with the end of the microphone
stand. And a couple of smiles too! Only one track dissapointed - jungle
rock. Lie Dream and Hip Priest are as good as ever...the latter featuring
random key hitting over the intro.

If I could take you all to one Fall gig ever, this would be the one. It is
your duty to go see em if they're playing near you.

Graeme....if anyone gets a tape of this gig, give us a shout please....

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