Excavate!: The Wonderful and Frightening World of The Fall

Faber presents a definitive insight into the ever-influential world of Mark E. Smith and the Fall, featuring never-before-published essays and ephemera from fans and collectors, edited by Tessa Norton & Bob Stanley.

‘To 50,000 Fall Fans: please buy this inspired & inspiring, profound & provocative, beautiful & bonkers Book of Revelations, choc-stock-full of loving Acts by true Apostles, simultaneously both the scrapbook you wished you’d kept and a portal to futures & pasts, known & unknown, & a Fantastic Celebration of this Nation’s Saving Grace.’

‘Mind blowing… brilliant.’

‘A container sized treasure trove bursting at the hinges with strangeness and wonder . . . I strongly advise you to buy it.’

This is not a book about a rock band. This is not even a book about Mark E Smith. This is a book about The Fall group – or more precisely, their world.

Over a prolific forty-year career, the Fall created a world that was influential, idiosyncratic and fiercely original; it was an education. Who wouldn’t want to be armed with a working knowledge of M.R. James, contemporary dance and Manchester City?

Bringing together previously unseen artwork, rare ephemera and handwritten material, alongside essays by a slate of fans, EXCAVATE! is a vivid, definitive record – an illumination of the dark corners of the Fall’s wonderful and frightening world.

Limited edition prints based on Fall lyrics by designer Paul Wilson are available to the first 200 preorders through Rough Trade.

EXCAVATE! will be published on the 1st April 2021 by Faber in hardback, ebook and audio.

Bob Stanley is the author of Yeah Yeah Yeah: The Story of Modern Pop (Faber, 2013) and Too Darn Hot (Faber, forthcoming) and has written for the Guardian, The Times, NME and The Face. He is also a film-maker and founding member of the group Saint Etienne. He was Writer in Residence at the British Library in 2017.

Tessa Norton writes regularly about art, books and music for various publications including The Wire, and for exhibitions and events including Liverpool Biennial and The Tetley. She published the artists’ book The Fields Here Are Full of Ghosts with Wysing Arts Centre in 2019, and she is a Jerwood Arts Fellow at FACT gallery for 2020-21.