Mark E. Smith might be considered the “father figure” of several punk rock generations. Or the stepfather figure. 😀 Figure it out for yourself. Formed back in 76, what Mark E. Smith said, still stands: “If it’s me and your granny on bongos, then it’s the Fall”. Not at all surprisingly, the 29th studio album by The Fall sounds fresh and it’s kicking, scratching and biting as always. And at age 54, Mark E. Smith proves to be much more alive than most of the nowadays kids with stupid hair cuts, sneakers, iPads and lack of personalities and perspectives. If I tell you that “Ersatz G.B.” it’s the best The Fall album, probably you will not believe me, but it’s actually their best album. Still, don’t know who plays the bongos and the other instruments around Mark E. Smith this time, but they all did a great job! 😀
01. “Cosmos 7” – 2:48
02. “Taking Off” – 4:01
03. “Nate Will Not Return” – 6:02
04. “Mask Search” – 2:41
05. “Greenway” – 4:13
06. “Happi Song” – 4:19
07. “Monocard” – 8:08
08. “Laptop Dog” – 4:01
09. “I’ve Seen Them Come” – 6:05
10. “Age of Chang” – 3:27
Mark E. Smith makes more sense than most of the kids nowadays and it’s quite outrageous that he still have more guts, energy and inspiration than his much younger competitors. “Cosmos 7” is already a classic The Fall anthem in the vein of “Senior Twilight Stock Replacer” and open the record explosively and rumbling. “Taking Off” takes us back to the 70’s psychedelia and it’s a mysterious trip down to minimalism. Then comes the over 6 minutes of “Nate Will Not Return” which sounds very breathing and alive, almost raw as a live jam recording, it’s so absolutely The Fall than it sounds very familiar. “Mask Search” bring back the rockabilly spirit and the punk rock rawness while Mark E. Smith spitting his thoughts right in our face. “Greenway” might be what Metallica with Lou Reed never succeeded to deliver: raw metal and meat garage rock colliding. And accidentally the following “Happi Song” reminds me of The Velvet Underground (& Nico). “Monocard” returns to the heavy and cutting sounds of “Greenway” and by drowning it into the psychedelia of “Taking Off” bring us again closer to “Lulu”, but once again Mark E. Smith and his band seems to be much more inspired and authentically aesthetic.
“Laptop Dog” waving on the pounding drums and some quite warm and familiar grooves which reminds me the 80’s somehow. It’s actually quite joyful. “I’ve Seen Them Come” squash punk rock and experimental psychedelia into one, don’t listen it drunk, it’s quite a dizzy trip. “Age of Chang” speaks for itself: it’s another punk rock anthem. Suitable for the street and not for the social networks… if you know what I mean: time for change – deeper change.
Not faking sophisticated bullshit, but being straight and efficient, “Ersatz G.B.” is the best response to why “Lulu” seems to be a failure.