Concert Recommendation: The Fall, Metro, Saturday, April 24
One of my favorite funny-because-it's-true music industry jokes is that
the Fall can't sell any records because anyone who might buy one is already
on a record company mailing list. On one hand, I can understand why they've
never had more than a cult following. Mark E. Smith's dentist drill-like
voice is one the greatest, most distinctive in rock but clearly an acquired
taste. Yes, they've been very influential, but the bands that show their
influence are ones like the Wedding Present and Sonic Youth, not exactly
household names throughout America. And their live shows are erratic, not
unlike the Replacements back in their drunken heyday: on a bad night, they
can be terrible, but on a good night, they are the greatest live band in
the world at that moment. When they hit their groove, what a groove they've
got. Yes, they sing about shoulder pads and cabs and telephones, but few
bands can match the thrilling sing-along of "Appreciated!" on "New Big Prinz."
The Fall play with Shesus and the Ponys at the Metro 3730 N. Clark, Chicago, 773.549.0203,
on Saturday, April 24 at 11:30 p.m.