The Smiths- Will This Madness Ever End?

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Phenomenal Cat
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The Smiths- Will This Madness Ever End?

Postby Phenomenal Cat » 15 Nov 2004, 15:28

I'm not being facetious here, I have just managed to avoid this band for most of my adult life. I own every issue of Mojo, including the Special Editions and Collections, yet I have found no reason to buy the issue dedicated to The Smiths. Perhaps it's my anti-80s bias; maybe it's because I haven't heard "the right stuff". What am I missing? All the songs I've heard sound like this to me:

Ba da da da da dum da da (obscure literary reference)

And a fa da da da dum da (funny man's name)

Bop ba da da Bop da da da (witty/cheeky observation)

Bum ba da da da dum (scathing yet polite put down)


Yet I hear this Johnny Marr was fantastic, out of this world, a genius, etc. They are rated to the point of infallibility by some at The BCB, so I ask you: Can you make a Smiths fan out of me? What should I listen to first? What should I listen for? Did I have to be there, or is there a chance their music still holds up today? What's the big deal? Am I just asking for trouble?
Last edited by Phenomenal Cat on 15 Feb 2005, 14:16, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Jeff K » 15 Nov 2004, 15:31

We're American, therefore we don't "get it", get it?
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Postby -- » 15 Nov 2004, 15:33

Listen to something else?

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Postby Mr Maps » 15 Nov 2004, 15:34

I'm Canadian and I say all you need is Hatful of Hollow and maybe the singles collection but other wise it's a lot of rehash and junk.
Pretty fun but inconsequential stuff.
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Re: The Smiths- I Still Don't Get It

Postby Uncle Spellbinder » 15 Nov 2004, 15:35

Phenomenal Cat wrote: Can you make a Smiths fan out of me?


No.

If there's one thing I've learned about The Smiths (whom I do love by the way), is that you love 'em or hate 'em. Kind of like the Weller sentiment on BCB.
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Postby (Rain Of Crystal) Spires » 15 Nov 2004, 15:38

I'm from northern Maine in the U.S and have been a Smiths fan for more than twenty years. There's about nine of us in the state, I think.
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Postby Jeff K » 15 Nov 2004, 15:39

If you don't like them by now, I doubt you ever will. It's not just an American thing, like Wombat said, they are one of those love 'em or hate 'em type bands.

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Postby emerson boozer » 15 Nov 2004, 15:39

One thing about the Smiths is that, while in the UK, they were a chart act, in the US, they were strictly a college-rock band with all the baggage that brings.

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Postby Uncle Spellbinder » 15 Nov 2004, 15:39

Sweet Bird Of Truth wrote:I from northern Maine in the U.S and have been a Smiths fan for more than twenty years. There's about nine of us in the state, I think.


I'm in Georgia. I might be one of two or three here.
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Postby -- » 15 Nov 2004, 15:41

Jeff K wrote:If you don't like them by now, I doubt you ever will. It's not just an American thing, like Wombat said, they are one of those love 'em or hate 'em type bands.


I don't even know about that, if it's necessarily this band per se...

If you've listened to a band and their music does nothing for you, why would someone else's opinion change that? If you have to be told what you're supposed to be enjoying, isn't that somewhat missing the point of why we listen to music for pleasure in the first place?

You can't be a fan of everything, I guess.

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Postby Phenomenal Cat » 15 Nov 2004, 15:42

Iam wrote:Listen to something else?


I listen to plenty of other things, but seeing as that people on this forum like to discuss things they like, I thought I would maybe learn a thing or two about a British band that obviously slipped past my radar because I'm American (which has been mentioned), and I was listening to death metal and punk in the 80s. I'm trying to be sincere when I ask if it's possible for me to like this band.
Now, I’m liberal, but to a degree
I want everybody to be free
But if you think that I’ll let Rick Santorum
Move in next door and marry my son
You must think I’m crazy!

But somehow when you smile, I can brave bad weather.

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Postby Phenomenal Cat » 15 Nov 2004, 15:47

Iam wrote:
Jeff K wrote:
I don't even know about that, if it's necessarily this band per se...

If you've listened to a band and their music does nothing for you, why would someone else's opinion change that? If you have to be told what you're supposed to be enjoying, isn't that somewhat missing the point of why we listen to music for pleasure in the first place?


This has been discussed before. I certainly don't need to be told what to like, but my past prejudices have kept me from listening to a lot of things (jazz, for instance) that I am now reassessing. There are plenty of bands I did not like the first, second, or even third time around, but ended up enjoying (The Beach Boys, for instance). If it's merely "a Brit thing", I'll move on.
Now, I’m liberal, but to a degree
I want everybody to be free
But if you think that I’ll let Rick Santorum
Move in next door and marry my son
You must think I’m crazy!

But somehow when you smile, I can brave bad weather.

no one

Re: The Smiths- I Still Don't Get It

Postby no one » 15 Nov 2004, 15:51

Phenomenal Cat wrote:Ba da da da da dum da da (obscure literary reference)

And a fa da da da dum da (funny man's name)

Bop ba da da Bop da da da (witty/cheeky observation)

Bum ba da da da dum (scathing yet polite put down)




:lol: i so stole this for my signature, cuz it's too funny.....



and i've always thought Morrissey sounded like a Gregorian Monk, myself.....he doesn't sing, he chants, and in the same 3 notes....it's almost completely monotonous....but i do have to say i loved "How Soon is Now" when it first came out and i still do.....while i was also listening to death metal and punk during the 80s, i was also into "Goth" and "New Wave", too...

by the way, sometime, look up the Smiths' lyrics and give them a read....a lot of them are pretty good...

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Postby andymacandy » 15 Nov 2004, 16:13

I bought the Singles collection recently, as it was available very cheap, and I have to admit that its not bad.
As somebody that really hates all the moany studenty iconography, and thinks they are hugely overrated musically(apart from Marr- I can appreciate his obvious ability), its a good place to start.
There are some good singles,and Id go as far as to recommend this album, but I dont feel the need for any more.
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Postby Matt Wilson » 15 Nov 2004, 16:25

Let's not forget that maybe six months ago there was a poll on these very boards pitting the Smiths against none other than Bob Dylan with the Smiths winning quite easily I might add. :lol:

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Postby andymacandy » 15 Nov 2004, 16:27

Matt Wilson wrote:Let's not forget that maybe six months ago there was a poll on these very boards pitting the Smiths against none other than Bob Dylan with the Smiths winning quite easily I might add. :lol:

Was there?
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Re: The Smiths- I Still Don't Get It

Postby Neil Jung » 15 Nov 2004, 16:28

Arctic Crap Wombat wrote:
Phenomenal Cat wrote: Can you make a Smiths fan out of me?


No.

If there's one thing I've learned about The Smiths (whom I do love by the way), is that you love 'em or hate 'em. Kind of like the Weller sentiment on BCB.


I don't mind them.


(There's always one....)
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Postby Matt Wilson » 15 Nov 2004, 16:29

andymacandy wrote:
Matt Wilson wrote:Let's not forget that maybe six months ago there was a poll on these very boards pitting the Smiths against none other than Bob Dylan with the Smiths winning quite easily I might add. :lol:

Was there?


Yep, this was about the same time a similar poll had Dusty Springfield beating Aretha Franklin as a better vocalist.

Ah, nationalism...

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Postby Love Vigilante » 15 Nov 2004, 16:31

Hip Priest wrote:I'm Canadian and I say all you need is Hatful of Hollow and maybe the singles collection but other wise it's a lot of rehash and junk.
Pretty fun but inconsequential stuff.

[defensive Smiths fan]Look, a Canadian calling something inconsequential. Pfft...[/defensive Smiths fan] :lol:

If you don't feel you're familiar enough to make a proper judgement, you should check out the Singles collection, and at least one album. Much of their best material wasn't released as singles, although that's not to say that the singles are top notch for the most part.

If after that you don't like them, then don't go bashing your head against a brick wall. Not loving the Smiths is usually a sign of stupidity, but I'm prepared to forgive that.

Oh, and it's not "of its time", by the way, it's aged just fine.
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Postby Love Vigilante » 15 Nov 2004, 16:32

Matt Wilson wrote:Let's not forget that maybe six months ago there was a poll on these very boards pitting the Smiths against none other than Bob Dylan with the Smiths winning quite easily I might add. :lol:

And justifiably so. Despite all those aliases voting for Dylan...
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