Last Commands of Xyralothep Via MES


Locus   (1)
Beware characters connected with car adverts (2)
Real, assumed or imaginary
The vocal testament of M.E.S.
Coming from the little town of Speck Marsden (3)
1. Cash - the eternal fork out
To keep everything normal is well beyond the capacity
All monies will try and escape thee
Beware of thy lazy right hand 
This is the focal of M.E.S. locus and Xyralothep (4)
Avoid respectable television and respectable newspapers
They have neither the talent of art
Or the instinctive snout of the media
2. Deploreth thy real god
He mutters incomprehensibly
Still on job one
With alloys
The calibrator (5)
In a cave not yet invented or constructed
This is your vessel M.E.S.
From he to you
This one M.E.S. procured
Mountain's waters blocked by dormant tree
See later on this LP (6)
6. Avoid fat aggressive men and handsome aggressive men  (7)
In conflict they disappear overnight with bad backs
7. Cod-science/cod-psychology is to be avoided
But do not make your enig-noise public
As it will bring the wrath of the drud
e quarters (8)


1. "Locus" was the original working title of the song, as it appeared on 2003 set lists (thanks to Zack). According to an interview with Ben Pritchard, Dave Milner (who is indeed credited!) originally titled it "Locust," but this is likely to be a case of an interviewer hearing him wrong (see the comments below).
The song is a sort of list of advice, and formally resembles Max Ehrmann's "Desiderata" (see note 7 below).


2. "Touch Sensitive" was used in a Vauxhall automobile commercial, and MES has claimed he wasn't paid.


3. There are three towns in England called Marsden. The one in West Yorkshire is quite close to Manchester. Since the towns are small, "speck" could somewhat plausibly be appended. If so, then this is probably at the same time a somewhat more covert reference to Spencer Marsden (Spec. Marsden), who co-wrote "Mad.Men-Eng.Dog." from The Marshall Suite, and who appeared on an obscure single track called "Fistful of Credits" with MES as "Mildmanjan" (thanks to Fit and Working Again).


4. The name is reminiscent of "Nyarlathotep," otherwise known as "The Crawling Chaos," a sinister deity in H.P. Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos. He is sometimes said to resemble an Egyptian Pharoah, and the suffix "-hotep," which means "to be at peace," is found in numerous ancient Egyptian names. Another example of a lyric substituting an 'X' for an expected letter is "Mike's Love Xexagon," also on The Real New Fall LP.


5. WIlliam Blake's demiurge "Urizen," a wintry sky god who is often interpreted as representing calculating reason in abstraction from the other faculties (particularly the imagination), is portrayed, in Blake's painting "The Ancient of Days," as gripping a compass with which he measures something at his feet. In an illustration from The Book of Urizen, he is depicted in a cave writing in the book of the law, as described by David Erdman in The Illuminated Blake: "He is writing secrets and commandments, but his copy book is enrooting; the closed books in which he is transcribing may be seen as a single coffin lid; the Mosaic tablets at his back (where the proverb-communicating Devil of Marriage 10 has living wings) suggest a double tombstone: are both Testaments stony to Urizen." Caves in Blake, as in Plato's famous fable, often seem to indicate cognitive limitation, although in Blake's case it is imaginative vision that is bloked by the walls rather than, as in the most common reading of Plato, rational understanding. 


6. A reference to "Mountain Energei," which wound up being placed earlier on the LP.


7. nil70 submits "This sounds like a nod to Max Ehrmann’s 'Desiderata':

'Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit.'"

"Desiderata" is a prose poem Ehrmann, full of advice for living like "Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth." This song is formally quite similar to "Desiderata," then, and could even plausibly be seen to be lampooning it a little, as one would imagine it skews a bit platitudinous for MES's sensibilities...


8. From the Lyrics Parade: "This could be a response to Julian Cope (who refers to himself as the "arch-drude"), who commented on his website: " hear that new Fall record and it's just more embittered semi-mystical coded fraudulent ramblings about NOTHING nothing NOTHING." (editor's interpretation, which may well be completely wrong!)"  

This actually seems very plausible, considering the "enig-noise" line. 



Comments (42)

  • 1. Mark | 03/07/2014
The snippet of taped gobbledigook at the start of this track includes a reference to KitKats:
  • 2. Mark | 03/07/2014
Following on from the previous comment, there's also mention of hedgehogs and the "Coco bah" phrase from the Peel session version of "Grooving With Mr Bloe / Green-Eyed Loco Man" in there.
  • 3. Zack | 16/01/2015
"Locus" was the informal "setlist title" of this song, as you can see from the 2003 setlists on the Fall gigography as well as one or two actual 2003 setlists in my personal collection.
  • 4. Martin | 10/03/2015
Very small correction needs to be made, I think:

"Nor the instinctive snout of the media":

The "nor" needs to be changed to "or".
  • 5. dannyno | 27/01/2017
Worth noting that "Locust", with a "t" was according to Dave Milner, his original title for the song [Source: The Pseud Mag #15, April/May 2007]
  • 6. bzfgt | 11/02/2017
Pritchard, that is (said it of Milner, who wrote it).
  • 7. bzfgt | 11/02/2017
Also it would be good to know how the interview was conducted, if it was aural it may be an error.
  • 8. Zack | 11/02/2017
The interview where Ben Pritchard called the song "Locust" ( ) took place in a bar after a gig and I strongly suspect that "Locust" was a transcription error.

Again, the Fall Gigography has scans of no less than three setlists from 2003 on which the song is called "Locus." The group continued to call the song "Locus" on setlists and in at least one interview even after Country on the Click's tracklisting (containing the song's full, official title) was released c. March 2003.
  • 9. dannyno | 15/02/2017
"Locus" it is, then!
  • 10. bzfgt | 18/02/2017
Thanks for that, Zack, I suspected the same so I'm going to throw shade at "Locust."
Fit and Working Again
  • 11. Fit and Working Again | 28/04/2018
spec Marsden could be a ref to Spencer Marsden who co.wrote aka mild man jan. No idea where his little town is.
  • 12. bzfgt (link) | 09/07/2018
I'd somehow never heard or heard of "Fistful of Credits" until now.
  • 13. nil70 | 26/11/2018
“Avoid fat aggressive men and handsome aggressive men”

This sounds like a nod to Max Ehrmann’s “Desiderata”

“Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit”
Paul Go
  • 14. Paul Go | 29/11/2018
“Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexatious to the spirit” the mantra of passive aggression

'media tabloid mob'
mutters mutterly?
bad backs? not sore elbows?
druids and cope as a last line? not very general advice.
I guess it depends on how many people Cope generally slams
...with his 'wrath of the druids' special move,.. kablam.
Paul Go
  • 15. Paul Go | 02/12/2018
I remember his voice tailing off after 'media' ' mob"
The line sits there wanting, to be distinguished from respectable media in someway.
Mutters incomprehensibly is tautological, same meaning twice.
I can't see or hear bad backs, it seems prosaic considering the drama surrounding it.

'more embittered semi-mystical coded fraudulent ramblings about NOTHING nothing NOTHING'
Wow, this sounds a lot like attitudes round these parts... wait, is this secret Cope funded sabotage site??

He might actually be that jealous and petty minded, not sure Mark would downgrade his little soliloquy for that prick's sake.
  • 16. dannyno | 03/12/2018
The Cope quote is from his review of Boredoms Vision Creation New Sun, dated 2001:

You know how you occasionally read a review of some new Fall LP and they say the Fall are back on form and you just gotta hear this particular record and you get all excited and hopping cause if the Fall just got genuinely back on it (even briefly) U-Know it would be a pagan free-for-all to live for. And it has intriguing song titles like "Dame J. Burchill Art Gulag" and a supposedly great cover version of Don Covay’s "It’s Better to Have & Don’t Need (Than Need & Don’t Have)". And in that brief time between reading about the album and hearing the album, you’re a kid again with a kid’s dreams and a whole world of possibilities (not just musical) is thrown up in front of you. Then you hear that new Fall record and it’s just more embittered semi-mystical coded fraudulent ramblings about NOTHING nothing NOTHING.

BUT......... it does not matter because you’ve still enjoyed AND lived fully through those moments of possibilities.

At least one third party site took the "nothing etc" comment to be about "The Real New Fall LP", which of course would be impossible since the album was released a couple of years after Cope's comments.

But if you read what Cope says, he probably doesn't have a particular (contemporary) Fall album in mind. He's speaking generally and generically.

Anyway, it's chronologically possible that MES could be responding to Cope, since TRNFLP was the first album to appear after Cope's comments were published. Whether MES would bother, a couple of years down the line, is another matter.
Paul Go
  • 17. Paul Go | 04/12/2018
Very specific to be a guess. I think he's talking about the 'public' in general.
Paul Go
  • 18. Paul Go | 04/12/2018 'druids' don't like the realities of the modern age, longing for a more innocent time.... an age when they could play at being wizards.
Paul Go
  • 19. Paul Go | 04/12/2018
He sounds like a pussy anyway, unless you think 'wrath' is sarcastic. I can't sense any sarcasm in his voice. The car advert comments are amusing, not for him perhaps, but the only specific to him, the rest, once it gets going (without wanting to sound like a pussy) is philosophical and deeply heartfelt.

A subtle and lovely shift, as he proclaims 'this is your vessel', being then in the third person, throws open the question, who is the author and listener now?

One of my favourites.
Paul Go
  • 20. Paul Go | 05/12/2018
So there's about 20 odd pages via google using the same uniformly bad lyrics, Not a single alternative version.

At what point does this process emerge from being a badly thought through opinion and blossom into an ugly new fact?

Why would any one not part of this process question this uniform repetition?
Paul Go
  • 21. Paul Go | 06/12/2018
Wait, arch-drude is something to do with charlatan druid orders, isn't it? I saw a picture of him standing next to a rock, so I assumed. I'll check...

charlatan arch-drude talentless shameless prick of the highest druid order julian Cope

Yep, he's definitely a shameless prick, of the highest druid order. He wrote a 'book' too:

Publisher's blurb“When drugged-up Time Traveller and ’80s musical burnout 'Rock Section' (oh my god) and his fellow 'English Hooligans' (hard as nails I bet) get kidnapped during Italia ’90, there are ruinous implications. But now Rock has returned to Sardinia one final time (...he's going to sink it?) to settle some scores and uncover the truth. He believes only Dutch cult leader Judge Barry Hertzog, still incarcerated on the island for the crime (...matter of opinion), can provide the answers. But through prescription drugs, the persistence of his driver Anna and a quest for the hidden ancient doorways (come again?) strewn around Sardinia’s only highway, the 131 (...surely 'the 1' if anything), Rock will discover that a greater truth awaits him.”

Julian has said “I demand of the reader to the point where they don’t know what’s real and what’s not real.” I think we do know Julian, clearly it's all a crock of shit. Note that this has to be the feeblest attempt to be like Mark E Smith ever. What a c##t.
Paul Go
  • 22. Paul Go | 06/12/2018
'tabloid mob' is there
pretty sure these are wrong: incomprehensibly/bad backs/drude
  • 23. bzfgt (link) | 15/12/2018
"Desiderata" is a good catch, that could be the sort of template for the thing
  • 24. bzfgt (link) | 15/12/2018
I think "drude" is right, but not sure about "bad backs." Between that and "cod" there's another word, "southern" or "sudden"? I can't quite get it, anyone hear it?
Paul Go
  • 25. Paul Go | 15/12/2018
I think you should consider whether the arch-dick is worthy of yours or marks fear for another day. 'Seven' is accounted for. the missing 3, 4, and 5 still puzzles me.
Paul Go
  • 26. Paul Go | 15/12/2018
I thought Cope had won the argument just by existing

'As it will bring the wrath of its ....' clear sibilance

If you hear the 'ts' it would mean drudes are a quarter of the public.

From my experience, lord of the rings fantasists are about as much part of the public as gypsies, besides, no one would ever describe 'drudes' as a quarter of the public.
Paul Go
  • 27. Paul Go | 15/12/2018
You're saying, Mark's 'god' is telling us/mark, to fear for our/his, soul, because of the sheer fury (mildly-mean) Julian Cope, the renowned pussy and plagiarist, will send our way?

This is worse than calling Bo Diddley a fatty,
Paul Go
  • 28. Paul Go | 15/12/2018
cope hadn't got the imagination to dream up such a fabulously unwarranted honor, he'd jizz in his pants if he heard you talking like this.
Paul Go
  • 29. Paul Go | 15/12/2018
copes jizz will be on your hands, think about it
  • 30. bzfgt (link) | 12/01/2019
"So there's about 20 odd pages via google using the same uniformly bad lyrics, Not a single alternative version.

At what point does this process emerge from being a badly thought through opinion and blossom into an ugly new fact? "

We're not the source of that, we're the recipients and haven't sorted it all out yet. I don't know if that's better or worse.
  • 31. harleyr | 11/04/2019
On about my 500th listen it struck me that...

They have neither the talent of art
Or the instinctive snout of the media


They have neither the *talons* of art
Or the instinctive snout of the media
Paul Go
  • 32. Paul Go | 24/05/2019
you don't hear any extra words directly after 'snout of the media'?
Paul Go
  • 33. Paul Go | 24/05/2019
Avoid respectable tv & newspapers as they don't have the snout of the media
...doesn't strike anyone as an obviously incomplete sentence?
  • 34. bzfgt (link) | 23/06/2019
Harley, that makes sense, but it sounds like "talent" to me

Paul, I do hear him saying something after "media" but I can't tell what it is

"To keep everything normal is well beyond the capacity" is also an obviously incomplete sentence

I can't hear "tabloid mob," I am listening to the COTC version where the vocal is more prominent and still can't make it out

Can anyone else here anything distinct after "media"?
  • 35. Craigness | 29/06/2019
Same riff used by killing joke on depthcharge, 2010, similar rythym too.
Paul Go
  • 36. Paul Go | 08/07/2019
A trashy 'tabloid' is the opposite of respectable 'broadsheets' in the UK. Broadsheets are big newspapers read by the educated classes, tabloids are full of celebrity gossip and sports news. I don't know if you call them tabloids in the US... like the National Enquirer I think.

I'm not 100% on 'Mob', it really tails off... but it's the best fit for me. I guess it refers to the way tabloid journalists have an unthinking, or pack-like sense for juicy stories.

It does sound a little inverted, but if 'the capacity' is like 'the full amount', it would read ~ beyond the amount that can be forked out.
Paul Go
  • 37. Paul Go | 08/07/2019
Always makes me think of Nietzsche's 'Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for All and None'
Zarathustra is a character telling parables in this bible parody. Ubermensch and all that.
He's like an ancient prophet speaking through Nietzsche. Much like Mark's Xyralothep in that sense.
It's most obviously like the ten commandments,
but the single line aphorism thing is found throughout Nietzsche's work.
  • 38. bzfgt (link) | 12/07/2019
Yeah, of course it's "Nyrlathothep," so "Xyra--" could be a portmanteau with "Zarathustra"
  • 39. dannyno | 01/03/2021

Locus is the title of a science fiction/fantasy magazine, founded in 1968.

Perhaps that has some relevance...
  • 40. DJAsh (link) | 18/01/2023
Re ; Speck Marsden
Marsden FC ( The Cuckoos) in West Yorkshire play their home matches at the Fall Lane ground.
Mark Oliver
  • 41. Mark Oliver | 13/09/2023
In 1971, 'Desiderata' was recorded as an LP track, with a syrupy backing track, by the US radio/TV presenter Les Crane- it was released as a single on Warner Brothers and reached no.7 in the UK charts in February 1972.
  • 42. dannyno | 26/01/2024
From the booklet with the 2024 Cherry Red box set of The Real New Fall LP, formerly 'Country on the Click':

Eleni Poulou: Somebody described Country On The Click as a psychedelic album. If you listen to Last Commands of Xyralothep Via M.E.S., that's a Krautrock song, as it doesn't have a bridge or a chorus.

Add a comment