We're currently spoilt for choice when it comes to rock music, but there's a tendency for some bands to become complacent and ape what they've seen others doing on YouTube and in magazines. But in Flintshire, North Wales, the four members of Falls — singer and guitarist Martin Gallagher, drummer Steff Jones, guitarist Phil Kelsall and bassist Ben Griffiths — have a particular distaste for the generic, and are injecting a sense of eccentricity and fun into their music.
“There’s about a hundred million bands, so to make yourself stand out is very important, to not be stereotypical” says Ben. “The generic band photo shoot where one foot’s raised against a brick wall makes us shudder with horror. Essentially, we have a good shit filter.”
Forming from “the ashes of other bands being crap”, the four came together over a shared passion for Taylor Swift and wanting to “make people wiggle.” After recording a number of demos, the band released their debut EP Dirtbox earlier this year as a free download. Described by the guys themselves as ‘fuck rock’, ‘gash pop’ and ‘sasscore’, this translates as the unhinged nature of early Pulled Apart By Horses delivering massive riffs at a breakneck pace, complimented by choruses overrun with earworms. It’s also led to the band putting on a string of incendiary live shows that share the unpredictability of Baby Godzilla gigs, but with a bigger sense of mischief, suggesting the band have come to life straight from the pages of the Beano. It’s led to some pretty interesting experiences.
“We played a show in Cardiff, in August, where you could run out onto the street outside the venue,” says Ben. “A guy vomited behind me as I was playing, and then as we jumped back inside the bouncer tried to clothesline Phil and I had ice cubes pelted at me!”
Other regular occurrences at Falls live shows include band members breaking bones and stripping off, or having various audiences members “feel their warm tender touch” by playing their guitars around those in attendance. The absurd nature of the band has perfectly been captured by the hilarious WWE/Sega Megadrive-inspired video for new single Sin Digger.
“A guy who me and Steff went to school with is a wrestler” explains Ben. “We had a meeting in a Wetherspoons and I drew up a very crudely drawn picture in crayon that basically had a stick figure of him saying, ‘I am a wrestler’ and a stick figure of me saying, ‘I’m not’, and that was the basic idea for the video. It was just us getting our arses kicked by three burly wrestlers, it was brilliant! I got to do five Stone Cold Stunners and take a chair shot to the face. It was one of the greatest days of my entire life!”
Falls new single Sin Digger is out now. Visit the band’s Facebook page for more information, and catch them live at the dates below.
November 26 – The Flapper, Birmingham November 27 – Kraak, Manchester November 29 – The Fox & Newt, Leeds November 30 – The Compass, Chester December 2 - The Buffalo Bar, London