The Fall are the last true perpetrators of the post-punk spirit. It is only you that...
Daryl Easlea 2007-03-06
For their first album since October 2005's Fall Heads Roll, this new Fall swing and sway, teeter but never totter over. Reformation Post TLC reconfirms the group's position as perennial outsiders, with leader Mark E. Smith's curmudgeonly mirror refracting the light of the current popular mores, underlining their futility and transience. 'Celebrity' and past-it pop groups are but two of his targets.
Remarkable at their concerts over the past year, “Reformation” reaffirms Smith’s lifelong allegiance to the power of repetition. This attack upon pound-seeking acts on the reunion trail effortlessly becomes this album's showstopper. By its fifth minute, it has smelted down just to a throb in your head. By the time it collapses 120 seconds later you realise that although there may not be new worlds for Smith to conquer, he can at least surmount the same one over and over again so definitively.
“Fall Sound” continues this attack with a composite of the power of the gothic period Fall, 85-86, but this is no Bournemouth re-runner. “Scenario” is wistful and reflective, building on an obscure old country ’n’ irish tune, “Pal Of My Cradle Days”. Of course, it wouldn't be a Fall album without a rambling, rumbling excursion into the avant garde and this here comes in the shape of “Das Boat” (there’s possibly even a Syd Barrett tribute buried in here).
Although the album opens with Smith singing 'I think it's over now' and this is the first Fall album where he actually sounds old, there is still the promise of so much more to come. Reformation Post TLC is another example of why The Fall are the last true perpetrators of the post-punk spirit. It is only you that have been elsewhere.