Mark E Smith has a few issues, oh yes indeed. You see, he’s concerned about the number of lesser bands out there who stole all their ideas from The Fall. “I invented acid house, me. I’ve been using dance techniques for years“. Next he’ll be telling us that The Fall invented jungle, given that for all this time they’ve had a drum and a bass in their band.

Mark, I’m sorry, but use your ears, man. With the sad exception of Pavement, no fucker has ever ripped off The Fall. When Coldplay, for example, were sitting around deciding how they could best make a pile of dosh out of the gullible indie public, their deliberations ran in part as follows:

COLDPLAY BASTARD: Hmmm. We need to find a hugely popular group to copy, one who have redefined rock without losing their commercial appeal, one who combine excitingly progressive instrumentation with lyrical acuity, range and depth.
EX-COLDPLAY BASTARD: Hey! I know! How about The Fall?

Further proof is perhaps needed. Find yourself a copy of the current National and Indie Top 40 Charts. Now cast an eye down them, and we can accurately measure the number of groups who sound like The Fall. Let’s see, shall we:

No. of incomprehensible songs about goblins and Nazis: NONE.
No. of hamfisted rockabilly thrashes with two-note keyboard lines: NONE.
No. of male singers with offputting gimmick: MANY. But NONE whose gimmick is quite as irritating as Smith’s probably trademarked “-ah” sound. Yeah, very idiosyncratic.
No. of groups who have made the same record for twenty-plus years, use of trendy rhythms notwithstanding: ONE, but the Rolling Stones started that before The Fall did.
No. of ‘scathing’ attacks on current musical styles: GOD KNOWS. Again, though, hardly a trend kicked off by Smith’s mob. Incidentally can anyone really have been surprised when Mark E Smith came out against glam?

Let’s face it, in twenty years of trying, The Fall have influenced one smug mob of check-shirted musical panhandlers, plus the Creepers and the Blue Orchids, both of which were in any case started by individuals too shit for The Fall, a concept more terrifying than any Cthulhoid bobbins Smith could come up with. That tradition continues, with the news that the Fall line-up binned by Smith last year has formed their own band, tidings which will surely gladden the hearts of those millions of fans just desperate to hear a Fall instrumental record.