"Sub-Lingual Tablet"

By Dark Starr

I like The Fall. I can see why some people wouldn’t, though. I consider them progressive rock. I can also see why some wouldn’t. The music is a mix of punk rock with space music, jam band elements and more. It’s very creative. It’s also rather raw at times. To me, it always manages to entertain. Your mileage may vary. 

First up is “Venice With The Girls,” and the usual Fall mix of proggy space rock with punk elements is on display here. This is energetic and a lot of fun. “Black Roof” is short and quite bizarre. I’m definitely reminded of some of the stranger stuff from Hawkwind. “Dedication Not Medication” has a lot of percussion and electronic music built into it. There is a dark yet almost dream related vibe to this. It’s almost like a cross between Rock In Opposition and John Lydon to me. 

I love the fast paced bass work on “First One Today.” The combination of surf music, psychedelia, punk and more on this is cool. I like the organ that dances around on “Junger Cloth.” Add in a cool bass line and crazed percussion and you have a great idea of the concept of this song. There is some funky guitar and almost Nik Turner like vocals. High energy punky music is the concept of “Stout Man.” The vocals are almost sneered. 

More like space rock meets strange modern prog, “Auto Chip 14-15” is one of my favorite songs here. It’s weird, but also incredibly cool. Weird electronic based music is the concept of “Pledge!” There are some prominent drums and weird keyboard or computer sounds over the top early. That sounds almost like an old synthesizer program on a computer. Of course, there are also vocals. It builds out to more of a hard rocking jam that’s a bit like the punkier side of Hawkwind. 

“Snazzy” feels to me like what you might get if you mixed the sounds of Bob Calvert, Nik Turner and Copernicus. It’s a cool, if strange, tune.Another that makes me think of Hawkwind a little, “Fibre Book Troll” is fast paced and hard edged. It’s also tastefully crazed. Later sections seem like what you might get if the Sex Pistols were to become a proggy jam band. There’s a long bit of whistling at the end. 

The closing piece, “Quit Iphone,” is the most purely punk thing here. Still, it’s got a lot of prog and other weirdness in the mix. It’s high energy and very entertaining and compelling. There is a weird acapella section at the end of this.