Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Last Song Syndrome 12: C.R.E.E.P. (The Fall), Clever and Witty, Never Mind That It Is As Old As Mark E. Smith

"He reads books of the list book club,
And after two months, his stance a familiar hunch
It's that same slouch you had the last time he came around."
- The Fall, "C.R.E.E.P."

When I was still attending the university, "chong" music lorded it over the airwaves, thanks to the likes of XB102, 105.1FM, and later on, NU107. Chong is better known as New Wave, the former being a local variation. While I was wary of this label, I do admit that I like a good deal of chong music and, well, chong artists. I'm pretty sure that did not make me a "chong", in the same manner that listening to punk and hardcore did not make me a punk either.

C.R.E.E.P. is one of those supposedly chong songs that I really like. The Fall is essentially, from its inception in 1977 up to the present, Mark E. Smith, lyricist, frontman, and a known book lover. I have to emphasize the latter; it seems that C.R.E.E.P. is in itself a criticism aimed at so-called book lovers. Of course I did not really care then. The song had been my constant companion: it played while I was dissecting my frogs, cats, and sharks in my Zoology classes, it was blasting off the speakers when I was having a good time with friends, it was consoling me when things went wrong, it was appealing to my failing memory whenever I crammed for my examinations.

Lately I have been organising my messy digital files and I came across this collection of John Peel sessions of The Fall. I know it was Je who got hold of them years ago, himself being a fan of cleverly written songs and edgy artists. The song never fails to delight, even after all these years, but I now understand what Mark E. Smith was saying all along. Great to have C.R.E.E.P. on my player once again: it is one clever and witty song...

...which is exactly what I have always wanted my companion to be.

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