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The irrepresible Mark E. Smith is back with one of the strongest Fall albums in years. The post-punk legend talks to Craig Fitzsimons about the song he’s written for the World Cup, the soulless nature of the Manchester derby and Nick Griffin’s appearance on Question Time. Oh, and why he doesn’t shoot squirrels as a hobby.
Craig Fitzsimons, 15 Jun 2010
Smithy has suffered his fair share of broken bones and general mishaps lately, and recently shattered his hip: “I was lucky, I was in Germany, and the health care is really great. I broke my hip in Cologne, and they told me I had things wrong with me I didn’t know about. I only went with the wife. It was fuckin’ weird. I’d been all over the shop, I’d been to specialists. There was summat wrong with me back, and summat wrong down here (points at his nethers) – for three fuckin’ months I’d been going to VD clinics, sat with junkies in AIDS clinics, and it turns out there was no VD, it was me back. The Germans worked it out in five minutes. All they needed was to look at me fuckin’ back. I tell you, German painkillers are great.”
Calvin Klein approached Mark a few years ago with a view to talking him into modelling underpants, an offer he declined, though the idea still makes him cackle: “Me broken hip – it would have looked great. Maybe I should have done it.”
Well, it’s a thought for the future. Maybe they’ll ask him again. Billboards of the world, you have been warned.
The Fall play the Electric Picnic in September. Your Future Our Clutter is out now on Domino.