Brix Smith Start says The Fall were massively ''under-appreciated''.

The 55-year-old musician was the post-punk band's lead guitarist and key songwriter alongside her legendary ex-husband Mark E. Smith - who sadly passed away in January after a courageous battle with kidney and lung cancer - and has admitted she felt she and the 'Totally Wired' singer deserved more recognition for their ''vision'' as artists.

Speaking exclusively to BANG Showbiz at the 2018 VO5 NME Awards on the red carpet before paying tribute to the late musician on stage at O2 Academy Brixton, Brix said: ''In his lifetime, I always thought that The Fall were so under-apprecaited, especially Mark E. Smith.

''He was singular in his vision and he never backed down from anything.

''People say, push the envelope, for him he created out of ether and he was just an amazing talent and quite a complicated man.''

''He used to say to me that there are seven original people in this world and everyone else is a slate of one of those seven.''

Brix first met Mark at a Chicago concert in April 1983, and moved to his native Manchester in North England, where they married in July of the same year.

The punk rocker then joined the group for their record 'Perverted by Language', and remained in the band until they divorced in 1989.

Speaking about Mark's influence on stage, Brix - who had a teardrop penciled onto her face as a symbol of mourning - said: ''Mark inspired all of us in The Fall to let go of preconceived notions of what a rock musician was ... Nothing was contrived and nothing was insincere... For Mark E Smith, there were no rules. Raise a glass, goodbye to my friend, soulmate and partner.''

The Fall formed in Manchester in 1976, and a number of stars revealed how influential they had been following the news of Mark's death, including Liam Gallagher - who DJ'd at Brix and Mark's wedding -Tim Burgess and Billy Bragg.