Tuesday, April 16, 2013

"45 45's until I'm 45" (#27/45)

Good morning dear readers,

alright, as you might already have gathered, it only was a question of time when something by The Smiths would come along in this rundown. Let me point out - again - that the sequence by and large does not reflect my estimation for the chosen tunes. This might change a bit when it comes to the last ten singles or so: all of them are top notch in my book and this will never change.

The Smiths. Well, I must admit I never really understood the fuzz that was made about them (and still is) in fact. Yes, they were fresh, they were new, they were brilliant. But there is an enormous amount of people who say that they are the best thing since sliced bread .... I never really could share this opinion. Still can't.

The first I heard by them was - immediately upon its release - the debut album, which I still regard as being an absolute masterpiece. Only quite some time after that (well ahead into 1984, if memory serves correctly) I got to listen to their second single, 'This Charming Man', which was released 5 months before the LP). To be absolutely frank to you: I didn't like it very much. At least not in comparison to most of the songs on the album. And you know what: this attitude hasn't changed much in the last 29 years. I carefully watched what they did until their end, but they never matched the debut album, as far as I'm concerned. As it so often is the case with other bands as well, it must be said.

But there is one non-debut album - song which I always adored, funnily enough one you don't hear all that often: your number twenty-six, friends. Enjoy:

from 'This Charming Man' - Rough Trade - RT 136 (1983)

A serious proportion of their singles weren't lifted from albums, and they came with B-sides and extra tracks that were not only exclusive to the singles, but were frankly as good as the A-sides.

Such a prolific output led to several compilations sweeping up those non-album tracks ('Hatful Of Hollow', 'Louder Than Bombs', 'The World Won't Listen'), yet somehow 'Jeane' slipped through the net and appears never to have been issued anywhere but on the B-side of the 'This Charming Man' 7".
At least as far as I know.
Take good care,




TheRobster said...

Interesting. I like 'Jeane' more than 'This Charming Man', that much I agree with. But I must take issue with your declaration that nothing matched that first album.

For me, 'The Queen Is Dead' rates as one of the greatest British albums of all-time. OK, one of the greatest albums in the world of all time. Admittedly most of my evaluation of the band came after they split - I didn't really get them until someone lent me 'Strangeways...' shortly after its release and I kind of went backwards from there. That's when it all made sense to me.

'Reel Around The Fountain' remains one of my fave Smiths tracks, but for me, they got stronger and stronger up to 'The Queen Is Dead'.

Of course, it's all subjective isn't it? That's what makes pop music so great. Can't fault 'Jeane' though. Good choice.

Walter said...

@ The Robster: I happened to me nearly the same way because I fell in love with The Smiths when they published 'Strangeways ...'. From this time on I listen intensive to the records I bought before. From this time on I did not only listen to the music - I tried to listen to the words also.

By the understanding of the lyrics, other and bigger dimensions have disclosed to me.

Swiss Adam said...

Jeane is a great song, love it. Its funny how thin it sounds compared to what came after which was all multitracked guitars.

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