The Fates

Following her role in the early years of The Fall, and the searing post punk of The Blue Orchids, as well as a few years serving as a backing band for Velvet Underground chanteuse Nico, Una Baines found herself starting 1985 without a band. Drafting together members of the all-female Beyond The Glass, and compatriots associated with her past projects, she entered the studio with a clutch of songs and a willingness to experiment. Separating the sides into “waxing”, for the more traditional songs, and “waning”, where the structures become looser and varied, the resulting album seemed quickly lost to time, but feels shockingly current in both it’s feminist content, and it’s freak folk execution.

Songs like “Bridget of Ireland” could be traditional ballads from decades past, while “No Romance” is a lo-fi new wave hit waiting to happen. “Sheila/Beats My Heart” fashions The Velvet Underground as a feminist protest band, and “Ritual” plays out like all of the Motown girl groups finally telling the world that they don’t need a boyfriend to solve all of their problems. It all draws on sources that are so familiar, yet turns them upside down in a celebratory fashion. It is the sound of a woman, and an artist, truly finding her voice, and it is both magical and compelling.

“Remarkably prescient and weirdly beautiful record. A creative, challenging and memorable companion, with a distinct voice and identity of its own: in turn playful, political and experimental. It's highly recommended.”  The Quietus

the fall, blue orchids, manchester, feminism, freak folk, punk, casio, wyrd folk, nico, goddess, political, primal

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