Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Smiths - Discography











The Smiths - Discography


Country :Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Genre :Indie Pop, Indie Rock

Members

Morrissey (vocals, piano),
Johnny Marr (guitar, keyboards, mandolin, bass, harmonica),
Andy Rourke (bass, cello),
Mike Joyce (drums, backing vocals),
Craig Gannon (bass, rhythm guitar, 1986)

Albums

1984 The Smiths
1985 Meat Is Murder
1986 The Queen Is Dead
1987 Strangeways, Here We Come
1988 Rank

Compilation

1987 Louder Than Bombs

Biography


The Smiths, arguably one of Britain's most influential rock groups of the eighties, were founded in late 1982. Over the course of the next few months, the group acquired a fanatical following thanks to iconic frontman Morrissey and their idiosyncratic stageshows. They rejected a deal with Manchester's own Factory Records (home to Joy Division and New Order, among others), and signed with London's Rough Trade Records instead.


The Smiths, arguably one of Britain's most influential rock groups of the eighties, were founded in late 1982. Over the course of the next few months, the group acquired a fanatical following thanks to iconic frontman Morrissey and their idiosyncratic stageshows. They rejected a deal with Manchester's own Factory Records (home to Joy Division and New Order, among others), and signed with London's Rough Trade Records instead.

Their first single "Hand In Glove" (1983) made a big impact on the British indie scene, with its allusions to same-sex love. The band's next few singles saw the Smiths climbing the pop charts, indicating that the time was ripe for the group's distinctive sound, inspired by punk and sixties pop and driven by guitars (much unlike most early 80s pop music). Johnny Marr would provide the musical background for Morrissey's lyrics, making for a fruitful creative process: Morrissey would sometimes provocatively tweak Marr's songs beyond recognition.

Their debut, 1984's The Smiths, sold very well, setting the standard for the same year's Hatful of Hollow, a collection of BBC session tracks and B-sides.

Meat Is Murder entered the charts at number one in early 1985, showing off Morrissey's vegetarian beliefs, and his antipathy for the Thatcher government. A minor drop in popularity followed (the Smiths' aesthetic had been copied by many other contemporaries, and the novelty of guitar-driven pop quickly wore off). However, by the time of 1986's The Queen Is Dead, the group quickly regained momentum, and even managed to carve out a niche in the USA. The Queen Is Dead would originally have been named Margaret on the Guillotine - another stab at Mrs. Thatcher - but that title was rejected by the record company.

Some signs of decline were already showing up, though: Johnny Marr was allegedly sliding into a number of bad habits, and Craig Gannon, the rhythm guitarist the Smiths had hired for their 1986 world tour, was fired as quickly as he'd been recruited. Andy Rourke, the bassist, was fired as well during this period, due to his heroin addiction; however, he re-joined the Smiths a few weeks later.

After a couple of well-received singles (including the controversial "Panic"), another compilation, The World Won't Listen, was released in early 1987 with a further compilation, Louder Than Bombs, released in the US. Although they had arguably reached their popularity peak by now, Morrissey and Johnny Marr, the songwriters and primary members of the Smiths, didn't get along that well anymore; Marr announced his decision to leave the Smiths just before the release of late 1987's Strangeways, Here We Come. Morrissey subsequently jumped ship to pursue a solo career, and the Smiths broke up.

Various Smiths compilations have been released over the course of the years: 1988's Rank, a live album recorded during their 1986 tour, and 1995's Singles, one of a number of best-of compilations, are maybe the most noteworthy post-breakup releases.

Andy Rourke and the Smiths' drummer, Mike Joyce, filed a lawsuit against Marr and Morrissey in 1996, demanding a redistribution of the royalties; they felt the group's songwriters received a disproportionally big share of the royalty income. Joyce and Rourke (who pulled out of the lawsuit before the final verdict) actually won the rather pitiful case. Consequently, a Smiths reunion doesn't seem very likely.

Links in comments

7 comments:

treasurebox said...

Albums

1984 The Smiths http://www.megaupload.com/?d=KLPVO9P5
1985 Meat Is Murder http://www.megaupload.com/?d=E1PVJXEX
1986 The Queen Is Dead http://www.megaupload.com/?d=BXWEMSX4
1987 Strangeways, Here We Come http://www.megaupload.com/?d=DYX25LJ8
1988 Rank http://www.megaupload.com/?d=06SCBM5M

Compilation
1987 Louder Than Bombs http://www.megaupload.com/?d=OHC0NABR

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much. I read the post, became intrigued and needed to hear their sound :) great blog

James said...

nice one!

i picked up the 'hatful of hollow' compilation last week and just need to hear more - so thanks alot, much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

I tried to download all the albums, but the only one that wasnt a broken link was the first one. none of the others worked.

treasurebox said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

none of the links work

Voodoo De Luxe said...

The Smiths are the best band of the 80's!

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