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They started as The Outsiders but soon became (and stayed for 20+ years now) The Fall, named for the Albert Camus novel. A lot of things can be said of The Fall. Their music is something you either love or hate. No one says, "Oh, they're okay." They either say "they're great" or "they suck."

The only other constant with The Fall is Mark E Smith and the fluidity of Bandmembers. The Fall is presently in at least its 27th personnel lineup (yes, they are still an active band). When one music reporter asked the illustrious Mark E Smith in 1998 if the constantly changing line-up was problematic he replied, "If it's me and your granny on bongos, then it's a Fall gig." Therefore, any band with Mark E Smith IS The Fall. And, not surprisingly, many members have left and returned -- some more than once!

Mark E. Smith Craig Scanlan Karl Burns Yvonne Pawlett Steve Hanley
Some members of The Fall at the time they were on IRS(L to R): Mark E Smith, Craig Scanlan, Karl Burns,
Yvonne Pawlett and Steve Hanley...

Philosophical punk (with more of an edge than Devoto's similarly described Magazine) driven by the obligatory amelodic guitars and sing-speak vocals, they have always been a cult band. They recorded their first EP in 1977 for New Hormones (The Buzzcocks' label of origin). Too esoteric to be classified as punk and not slick enough to be "new wave" they were unable to find a label willing to release it and it languished in the vault for a year...

Enter Miles Copeland, who was making a name for himself creating labels and exploiting the new music explosion erupting in the UK at the time. Adrenaline magazine Editor Danny Baker convinced Miles to release the EP on his new Step-Forward Records label. With support from famed UK DJ John Peel, their following grew. They soon left the Copeland stable for Rough Trade Records.

During a US tour Smith met Louise Elise "Brix" Smith and married her. After Brix joined on guitar in 1984 The Fall became somewhat more melodic and even managed to hit the top 40 twice in their native UK. In 1988 Brix and Mark divorced and the band's sound shifted back to the darker and more chaotic sound. This was enhanced by the return of several former bandmembers.

In 1993 The Fall signed with Matador Records, their first US label in nearly a decade. They continue to perform and tour and including a US Tour in October of 2002 (details on the official Fall website) and will record tracks for the next CD while in Memphis (Memphis!?!?)...The Photo at right is Mark E. Smith today.

Photo courtesy of
The Fall Official Web site


This discography will cover only THE FALL's recordings for I.R.S. Records. Recordings for other labels, other recordings, solo recordings and guest appearances, may be mentioned in the biography or discography, but details can be found by visiting some of the cool links for THE FALL, below...

Albums & EPs

IRS SP-003 (Released 17 Sep 1979)

Vinyl Only

Produced by The Fall & Bob Sargent
Recorded At Camden Sound Suite, 15 Dec 1978
Art Direction Not listed, but probably Vermilion Sands
Photography No Credit given

Mark E Smith Vocals
Yvonne Pawlett Keyboards
Marc Riley Bass
Martin Bramah Guitar, Vocals
Karl Burns Drums

Track Listing:

  1. Frightened (Smith/Friel) 5:02
  2. Crap Rap 2/Like To Blow (Smith/Bramah) 2:03
  3. Rebellious Jukebox (Smith/Bramah) 2:54
  4. No Christmas For John Quays (Smith) 4:37
  5. Various Times (Smith/Riley/Pawlett/Bramah/Burns) 5:14
  6. Underground Medicin (Smith/Bramah) 2:05
  7. Two Steps Back (Smith/Bramah) 5:02
  8. Live At The Witch Trials (Smith) :52
  9. Futures & Pasts (Smith/Bramah) 2:35
  10. Music Scene (Smith/Riley/Pawlett/Bramah) 8:04

Review coming Soon!

Cope 2 77-EARLY YEARS-79
Faulty Products COPE 2(Released 1981)

Vinyl and Cassette

Produced by The Fall and various producers
Recorded At Various locations, Nov 1977-Nov 1979
Cover Art by Vermilion Sands/Insult Design

Mark E Smith Vocals plus Keyboards on 6-11
Yvonne Pawlett Keyboards
Marc Riley Bass on 1-5, Guitar & Keyboards on 6-11
Martin Bramah Guitar on 1-5
Craig Scanlan Guitars on 6-11
Karl Burns Drums on 1-5
Mike Leigh Drums on 6-11
Tony Friel Bass on 1-5
Steve Hanley Bass on 6-11
Una Baines Keyboards on 1-5

Song Listing:

  1. Repitition (Baines/Burns/Friel/Smith/Bramah) 5:10
  2. Bingo Masters Breakout (Smith/Baines) 2:15
  3. Psych Mafia (Smith/Friel) 2:16
  4. Various Times (Smith/Riley/Pawlett/Bramah/Burns) 5:14
  5. It's The New Thing (Smith/Bramah) 3:31
  6. Rowche Rumble (Smith/Riley/Scanlan) 4:00
  7. In My Area (Riley/Smith/Scanlan) 4:09
  8. Dice Man (Smith/Riley/Scanlan) 1:45
  9. Psykick Dancehall (Smith/Riley/Scanlan) 3:36
  10. Second Dark Age (Leigh/Scanlan/Riley/Hanley/Smith) 2:02
  11. Fiery Jack (Smith/The Fall) 4:44

Review coming Soon!

Compilations & Soundtracks

IRS GREATEST HITS VOLS 2 & 3 (SP 70800): features "Rebellious Juke Box" on Side 3, Cut 6
KILL YOUR RADIO (IRS29696): features "Rowche Rumble"


There are great numbers of sites on the world wide web devoted to The Fall. Below we list just the seven best ones we found. Most have links to even more! And somewhere out there there is a site where you can even download a true-type font of Mark E. Smith's haunting penmanship!

The Fall's Official Web site
Jonathan & Jeff's Fall Page
Join The FallNet and get updates, post in the forum and more!
The FallNet is part of this< A HREF=""> greater fan site with lots of details about the band...
Download a Mark E Smith font. Way cool!
Keep up with the latest Tour Info & News about The Fall.
Every Issue of the Fall Fanzine, The Biggest Library Yet
A collection of The Fall Sleeve Images, Not complete, but impressive
A new and quite slick Fall web site...
Gnod's Statistics site which strangely displays other bands you may like in an odd "orbital" pattern...

Return To The I.R.S. Records A&M Era Discography
Return To Faulty Products Discography
Discuss The Fall in The DISCUSSION FORUM
This Page Last Updated 12 September 2002

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