The Fall – Dragnet

ARTIST: The Fall Dragnet
TITLE: Dragnet
YEAR RELEASED: 1979
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: The Fall didn’t release singles off albums at this time. The deluxe version has the great Rowche Rumble (#31 UK Indie)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Only if you’re collecting the Fall
LINEUP: Mark E. Smith, Steve Hanley, Mark Riley, Craig Scanlon, Mike Leigh
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: The second Fall album adds two long standing members admist the normal band turnover, but sounds like it’s recorded in a shed on a crusty old Ampex.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: I know about lo-fi records and fast, hurried recording practices, but this album really sounds like a bunch of demos instead of a fully formed album. It’s not just the recording that has that feel, it’s some of the material. Smith seemed like he was on auto-pilot and his repetition, which is a clever device, elongated some cuts past when they should have been ended.

Just a few of the cuts, to my ears, are as good as their debut album. Such is the problem with artists like Smith (and Robert Pollard). Everything seems to be worthy of recording, so they record it. The problem is that the pruning and editing gene isn’t there. Fortunately, most of what Smith puts out there is at least OK. Nothing here was BAD, just a lot of it was not stellar.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: Only Riley (and Smith) were left from the first album, but Hanley and Scanlon joined on and stayed for quite a while.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yep. It’s not as vast as the other Fall deluxe sets. Just two singles and B-sides (all better than most of the album) and alternate takes.

GRADE: B-: The bonus tracks make it a B. It’s just not as interesting on sonically pleasing as the first album.

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