The Fall

Live 77

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Live 77 is a fascinating document, the only readily available source for several of the Fall's earliest songs, and an eagle-eye view of the perils of playing live at the height of punk. Cries of "you immature bastards" do nothing to halt the hail of gob raining down on the band from the dancefloor, and the sense of confrontation between musicians and onlookers is palpable. Visceral versions of "Oh Brother," "Copped It" and the bare bones of "Hey! Student," here titled "Hey! Fascist," are also fascinating -- it would be several years before the Fall would record studio versions of any of them. Unfortunately, if hi-fidelity is your main concern, this is one to avoid. While the show itself has some historical relevance as Tony Friel's final appearance with the band, and the performance itself is executed with all the dismissive flair and aggression for which the early Fall were renowned, the sound quality is such that listening to the actual disc is an experience best reserved for wrapping up those parties when the guests refuse to leave.

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