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The Smiths: Top 10 Songs

Hey guys,

I have decided, with my mate Hendrick, to compile a Top 10 List of songs from one of the most influential bands of the ’80s, The Smiths. Compiling the list was extremely difficult, considering how many amazing songs The Smiths have released over the years. However, we have been able to narrow it down to the Top 10 songs that Hendrick and myself believe are the most commendable. We hope you enjoy these 10 songs which have been shining examples from the pioneers of Indie music.

Don’t be hating if your favourite isn’t there, because we know our choices might not be the most popular ones. However we hope you understand that their are so many great songs to choose from and these are what we believe are our favourites.

10. “This Night Has Opened My Eyes”

“This Night Has Opened My Eyes”  was recorded during the John Peel sessions in 1983 and was released on the compilation album “Hatful Of Hollow” and later on the album “Louder Than Bombs”. The song is based on the play “A Taste Of Honey” which tells the story of the troubles faced in the play by a hardworking yet alcoholic single mother. The song is very moving, with alluring vocal melodies and lyrics.

Favourite Lyric: “In a river the colour of lead, immerse the baby’s head”

9. “This Charming Man”

“This Charming Man” was released on The Smiths self-titled debut album in 1983. The song is filled with beautiful lyrics from Morrissey and an extremely memorable opening guitar riff from guitarist Johnny Marr. Morrissey uses many words which had been lost within society in the 1980s England, he stated in an interview that he used these words to “try and revive some involvement with language people no longer use. In the daily scheme of things, people’s language is so frighteningly limited, and if you use a word with more than 10 letters it’s absolute snobbery.”

Favourite Lyric: “Why pamper life’s complexity when the leather runs smooth on the passenger seat?”

8. “Cemetery Gates”

“Cemetery Gates” was released on The Smiths 1986 album “The Queen Is Dead”. The song is a direct response to all those who criticised Morrissey’s use of words from many well known authors in his songs. It is a very catchy song with, once again, amazing lyrics. It is one of the best “cheer up” songs made by The Smiths, and fills you with a sense that, no matter what goes wrong, you always have your friends by your side to help you through it.

Favourite Lyric: “A dreaded sunny day so I meet you at the cemetery gates, Keats and Yeats are on your side”

7. “I Know It’s Over”

“I Know It’s Over” was released on The Smiths 1986 album “The Queen Is Dead”. It is one of The Smiths most beautiful songs, and if it catches you in the right mood, won’t hesitate to make you shed a tear or two. Morrissey’s poetic lyrics flow over the slow guitar and merge into a song that is extremely real.

Favourite Lyric: “Oh Mother, I can feel the soil falling over my head”

6. “William, It Was Really Nothing”

“William, It Was Really Nothing” was released as a single in 1984. It is a song about the male standpoint of marriage, taking the form of one man saying to another that marriage is “really nothing”. This song shows some of Johnny Marr’s best guitar work and is a very technical song in a sense. Morrissey’s voice is nothing short of amazing…as always.

Favourite Lyric: “The rain falls hard on a humdrum town”

5. “How Soon Is Now?”

“How Soon Is Now?” was released on The Smiths 1985 album “Meat Is Murder”. It has been called the “Stairway To Heaven” of the ’80s and is one of the most daring song by The Smiths, and is quite a change in sound to their earlier singles. The song is extremely haunting, which explains why it has been used in many supernatural/horror themed television shows (Charmed) and films (The Craft). It remains a favourite amongst many fans of The Smiths.

Favourite Lyric: “I am human and I need to be loved, just like everybody else does”

4. “The Boy With The Thorn In His Side”

“The Boy With The Thorn In His Side” was released on The Smiths 1986 album “The Queen Is Dead”. The song describes that the music industry is the the thorn in the boy’s (Morrissey) side. It discusses the fact that no one really believed in Morrissey or The Smiths and that the thorn that was the music industry wouldn’t play their records. Morrissey stated in an interview “if they don’t believe me now, will they ever believe me? What more can a poor boy do?”.

Favourite Lyric: “Behind the hatred there lies a murderous desire for love”

3. “The Queen Is Dead”

“The Queen Is Dead” is the title track on The Smiths 1986 album. The Queen Is Dead is one of the most energetic songs by The Smiths and is one of the best songs to illustrate how brilliant Morrissey’s lyrics are. This song is a semi-attack at monarchism, however, done in the politest way possible, using extremely witty lyrics.

Favourite Lyric: “Farewell to this land’s cheerless marshes, hemmed in like a boar between arches, her very lowness with a head in a sling, I’m truly sorry but it sounds like a wonderful thing”

2. “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out”

“There Is A Light That Never Goes Out” was released on The Smiths 1986 album “The Queen Is Dead”. It is one of The Smiths finest efforts and is considerded on of their greatest songs ever. It was extremely difficult in choosing between this song and the number one song in this list because both are equally brilliant. The song is without doubt one of The Smiths most gorgeous songs with moving flute and string sections along with Morrissey’s genius in his lyrical abilities this record is considered not only one of The Smiths best, but one of the greatest songs ever.

Favourite Lyric: “And if a double-decker bus crashes into us, to die by your side is such a heavenly way to die”

1. “Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want”

“Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want” was released as a b-side to the song “William, It Was Really Nothing” in 1984. This song in my opinion is one of the greatest songs of all time, and it wraps up in just under two minutes. The Smiths have managed to fit so much emotion into one song that is generally considered very short. The song is featured in the scene in the cult movie “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” during the very memorable art gallery scene. The song is extremely majestic and is in one word a “masterpiece”.

Favourite Lyric: “So for once in my life let me get what I want, Lord knows it would be the first time”
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Here is a list that I have compiled of the acts that i think will be infiltrating ur iTunes library and radios all around the world in 2010.

Freelance Whales

Freelance Whales are a five-piece from New York, who (as seen in the picture above) defy the idea of what is seen as a “normal band”, it is illustrated in their use of instruments, including the banjo and the glockenspiel, but also in the diverse range of the music that they produce, which can be seen as a mix of indie and folk and just a dash of dream pop.

Download: “Generator ^ First Floor”

Surfer Blood

These boys from West Palm Beach, Florida have just released their debut album “Astro Coast” and what an album it is. By experimenting with garage rock guitars and surf rock psychedelia these guys have managed to produce a fresh and very likeable album debut album. “Take It Easy” & “Swim” are a must for this years summer mixtapes.

Download: “Take It Easy”

Two Door Cinema Club

Indie-electro is going to be big in 2010, with the likes of MGMT and the Midnight Juggernauts to release follow ups to their highly successful debut albums, and for these Northern Irish lads, their anticipated debut album “Tourist History” is set for a March release, which no doubt will be one of the highlights in the indie scene this year.

Download: “I Can Talk”

The Middle East

After releasing their amazing debut EP “Recordings Of The Middle East” things can only get better for this Townsville musical collective. Last year the received the Triple J award for “Unearthed Artist Of The Year” which convinced the band to stay together and continue making music. The Middle East’s debut is set for release this year, where vocal harmonies and soothing melodies will be heard at their best.

Download: “Blood”

Owen Pallett

After changing name from Final Fantasy, this will be a good year for Owen Pallett whose incorporation of classical movements into ambient baroque indiepop can be seen at its best on his first album as Owen Pallett “Heartland”. His subtle music is perfect to kick back too and focus on the everything beautiful around you.

Download: “Red Sun No.5”

Local Natives

After touring and releasing their debut album in the UK, these guys will be expected to return to the US all out and ready to go. Their sound has been compared to many bands which are on opposite sides of the “indie spectrum” which shows the bands diversity especially in their song “Sun Hands”.

Download: “Sun Hands”

Jonathan Boulet

This extremely gifted young Australian musician has shown us just how talented he is by producing an amazing Self Titled debut which he wrote, recorded and produced. And just incase you wanted to know, the multi-instrumentalist also played close to every instrument on the record. His awesome first single “A Community Service Announcement” is accompanied with one of the best videos I’ve seen all year.

Download: “A Community Service Announcement”

King Charles

“Quaint Psychadelia” & “Folksy Electronica” is how King Charles has been described, and in 2010 we should be seeing a large rise in his popularity, especially within the indie scene. As his name suggests he is royalty in the field of lyricism, his poetry mixed with his music, and most importantly his trademark hairstyle will be very liked in the new decade.

Download: “Love Lust”

Art Vs. Science

Last year the odd person knew about this new upcoming band, whose debut EP was a favourite amongst indie festival go-ers and music enthusiasts. But this year with the promise of a debut full length album, this Australian electro trio will be a festival highlight and will be heard at house parties all across Australia and perhaps the world.

Download: “Hollywood”

Suckers

There is something about Brooklyn, Vampire Weekend, Yeasayer and Grizzly Bear are all stellar indie bands and the next group you can add to the list is Suckers. After a successful debut EP these guys should be heading back to the studio to produce what I see to be a highly anticipated full-length debut. If you are a fan of Yeasayer and other brooklyn bands, these guys wont disappoint.

Download: “Beach Queen”

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