The Fall - Re-Mit - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

The Fall - Re-Mit

by Rich Morris Rating:6 Release Date:2013-05-13

After three albums which successfully messed around with the traditional Fall template (on songs such as the spaghetti western mangle of 'Cowboy George', the metal thrash of 'Greenway', and the brain-battering epic rant of '50 Year Old Man'), Re-Mit is one of those Fall albums which does pretty much what you'd expect. Which isn't to say it's an easy listen. Far from it, of course, but the clipped, indie-rockabilly likes of 'No Respects (Intro)' and 'No Respects (Rev)' (they're basically the same tune) are classic Fall through and through and could have been recorded at any time since the mid-80s.

Classic Fall is no bad thing, and we know undying Fall main-man Mark E Smith intermittently goes back to the source of his band's grumbling, bile-flecked sound no matter what the current line-up, as he did on 1999's excellent comeback 'Touch Sensitive'. However, it's fair to say this is the first Fall album for a few years without any surprises on it. There are no jaw-dropping, funny/spine-chilling moments here, such as on previous albums Ersatz GB, Your Future Our Clutter, and Imperial Wax Solvent, but Re-Mit is far from being the sort of wash-out 2007's Reformation Post TLC was either.

Instead, the likes of 'Jetplane' (about queuing in an Italian airport) and 'Kinder of Spine' get on with being middling Fall songs, not bad but not excellent. The album contains a few expiermental, spoken-word tracks in 'Noise', 'Jam Song' and the wonderfully titled 'Pre-MDMA Years'. These songs are packed full of interesting little sounds and details but somehow aren't quite enough to lift the whole set above the average, maybe because two of them sound like brief doodles while 'Jam Song' evolves into something which should be an angry motorik jam but actually just sounds repetitive and uninspired.

Despite this, if you like The Fall (I do) it's kind of impossible not to enjoy Re-Mit. It's still a slightly frustrating listen because you feel like those involved haven't put quite enough effort in. The one exception is 'Victoria Time', a squelchy synth-punk number which could have sat happily on The Fall's excellent 2005 album Fall Heads Roll.

After a lengthy, tense intro, there's a terrible moment where Smith lets loose a comic high-pitched wail and you think he's just not taking things seriously. Thankfully, it's a brief outburst and soon Smith is at his ranting best, delivering the kind of inimitable, fiery vocal that keeps fans coming back to The Fall no matter what they put out and who else is in the band. We'll be coming back from the next album too.

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