One of the most interesting things about Mark E. Smith in his and The Fall’s latter years was predicting exactly what legacy he/they would leave. As the obstinate bastard’s health faded and the band’s music dug itself ever deeper into a browbeating niche the inevitability of his passing had many filing their obituaries neatly well in advance; most focussed on the creased, incomprehensible racket he gleefully fronted rather than the controlling darkness of his sometimes malign off stage persona.
Indirectly or otherwise there’s a line somewhere between Live At The Witch Trials and Cabbage, a band from the Manchester suburbs who mirror The Fall’s turd-in-the-duvet joy at making straight folk glaze over in confusion or wrinkle their nose in disgust. Nihilistic Glamour Shots is their debut album, released on the heels of a slew of unfocussed but vibrant EP’s; co-produced by The Coral’s James Skelly, it’s a necessarily more coherent affair, a several pronged attack on our willingness to succumb to zombiefication whilst being in a near-permanent state of outrage.
It’s not an easy ride, a high entry fee that song titles like Post Modernist Caligula hint at, but the quintet’s accompanying gallop through post punk, distressed country, warped pop and surf rock is a thrilling, boundary free excursion on a bus full of society’s offcuts.
As for old Mark, he’s up there giggling, toothless and raising a whisky to this, to the chaos and overpowering warm toilet seat vibes which he left trailing in his fuck’s-not-given wake.
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