Of course, I had heard The Fall before 1993. The band John Peel owned the most records from, as he wrote in his biography Margrave In The Marshes, but the album that really resonated with me was 93’s Infotainment Scan. It was like finding the key to my front door and a wealth of recordings I’d previously ignored became very real and available to me. I was like a child who’d been given free rein in the sweet shop, so many sounds, textures, and flavours were suddenly at my fingertips. Although in those days it was a journey into town that was required, now it’s just flicking through my record collection or a Google search that brings these sounds to my ears and more likely through the walls. Well, after all – caring is sharing.
The latest in the label’s series of 10” releases that acknowledge Cherry Red’s 45th anniversary. Tracks here are previously unheard out-takes from sessions that spawned 2013’s Re-Mit album. A gorgeously chaotic blend over 4 tracks, with cover art that closely resembles the original. This alternate sleeve displays what appears to be an indifferent Mark E. Smith, who rather than stage-bound, could be after-show. Backstage, the unmistakable frame of keyboard player, Elena Poulou stands at the back of the setting, surrounded by band-mates. A dismembered arm coming from somewhere points at the title O-mit.
The opening track is another take of ‘Hittite Man’. An album that delivered differing opinions in some reports, although The Fall always were something of a Marmite band, you either loved them or were just bemused. This first track is ‘Hitmen (Dream)’ and is the closest sign you’re going to get when looking at track names on this set of tunes, so it’s probably best to sit back and enjoy. Mark barks his poetry, seemingly with little sign of where this came from, or where it’s going. The four tracks on offer here, I would describe as scribbles denoting ideas, although it has to be said these ideas are pretty well formed.
Mark E. Smith’s passing on the 24th of January 2018, might’ve stripped the alternative music scene of his words, wisdom, and Lancashire mindset, but unearthing these recorded treasures has maintained this adopted son of Manchester and his band, in speakers from Britain and beyond.