Grotesque (The Fall)

  • 18 Aug 15:07
  • 2 lists

Grotesque (After the Gramme) is a 1980 album by The Fall. The music is a departure from that of the previous albums, 1979's Live at the Witch Trials and Dragnet. Marc Riley played organ on several tracks on the album. This was Paul Hanley's first album with the band, having joined earlier in the year aged just 15. The album was preceded by the singles, "How I Wrote 'Elastic Man'" and "Totally Wired", which were subsequently included on CD reissues of the album. The eye-catching full colour sleeve (the group's first) was drawn by Mark E. Smith's sister, Suzanne.

The album was much more outward-looking than its predecessor, Dragnet, and Smith's lyrical maturity was striking, reading as a state-of-the-nation address on "English Scheme" and "C 'n' C-S Mithering". The album also included the gothic horror of "Impression of J. Temperance" and the conspiracy theory-fuelled "New Face in Hell". In fact, a number of the tracks have particularly idiosyncratic titles: "The NWRA", representing the track's lyric, "the north will rise again" (not, as some supposed, "The North West Republican Army" — see Paintwork - Brian Edge, Omnibus Press 1989); "C 'n' C-S Mithering", a reference to cash and...


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