Friday, 22 April 2011

Day 39: I hate the countryside so much.

A request today from another reader called Drucker, he's asked for some latter-period Fall, about time, I'm spending my time in the 80s and 90s at the moment.

This one is a cracker actually.

Song: Contraflow
Album: The Real New Fall LP (Formerly Country On The Click)

Year: 2003

So this one reminds me of all sorts of things, the dark, swirling guitar sound could be influenced by a million bands, but I'm mainly reminded of the spirit of The Dead Kennedys, and as well as that song, it brings to mind this one. I wonder if Jello Biafra is a fan of The Fall? Certainly sounds like it.

Back to The Fall, this is off the album that could almost be the definitive in this generation's sins against the record industry, as I've mentioned in a previous post, this album was leaked as being called Country On The Click on the net and the unreleased version people cyber-stole differs almost completely from the released version, hence the new title and massive cuts, pastes and changes in the songs. Apparently this song exists as a slower version with keyboards and backing vocals, but I feel this would detract from what is a raw, mysterious slice of MES. The punk-esque 'chorus' is spat out with a grunt and works really well with the overly-loud guitars. I love the production on Fall songs, so over-clocked if it was a computer it would have burned out long ago, it always sounds calculatedly raw and brutal in a way that not many other bands can manage.

Interesting lyrics that appear in this song seem to focus on the countryside, mentions of Snake Pass and Buxton get a mention, the Peak District is an area of the UK that marks out a massive area between Yorkshire and Smith's native Manchester/Salford/Prestwich/Bury, he actually mentions the peaks a few times on Your Future Our Clutter, so maybe it's a minor obsession he has. The Snake Pass he refers to is a road that stretches from Manchester to Sheffield/Barnsley and is beautiful, but also pretty hair-raising, some sheer drops on either side of the road and is often closed in bad weather, but remains a main route for some reason.

There's a line that reinforces this odd notion of the countryside "Them keys won't fit/Keys won't fit (the keys won't fit)/The keys won't fit in the socket/Or the controls/Stuck like grids on Pennine mud" I feel like the last part should be reversed, but it works both ways, is the mud stuck to grids or are the grids stuck to mud? It does bring up the idea of cattle grids and the earthy smell of the countryside.

But why does he hate it?


  1. Yes, Jello Biafra is (or at least was) a Fall fan. There's a photo of him at the front of a Fall gig in SF in 1981 -

    Great blog btw.

  2. That's amazing, love that its documented too!

  3. i hate roundabouts(simple)SHOUT...S.YORKSHIRE MANCHESTER(THE MIXER)

  4. British people in hat leather,sweating fat fuckers kfc mc two lager cans...

  5. why haf do read half baked and then type em hardly? When anyone arskey me my fave The fall thing, It's the larst whon ay heard.Royalist bastards! how dare they, vote yes for AV...

  6. even if its bollocks(never mind) something to say!you have atough journey, idon't think so, think of (apt) weather report, wierd sound. Love it myself, don't know what the fuckers on about but yerv only been listening to em for a bit, carry on ...