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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Strangeways, Here We Come

The Smiths

1987

Buy At Rough Trade
Strangeways, Here We Come
Album Summary

Strangeways, Here We Come is the fourth and final studio album by English rock band the Smiths. It was released on 28 September 1987 by Rough Trade Records, several months after the group had disbanded. All of the songs were composed by Johnny Marr, with lyrics written and sung by Morrissey. Rolling Stone said the record "stands as one of their best and most varied". Slant Magazine listed the album at No. 69 on its list of "Best Albums of the 1980s", writing that "Whether or not Strangeways, Here We Come ended the Smiths' brief career with their best album has been the subject of considerable debate for nearly a quarter century, but it definitively stands as the band's most lush, richest work."The album reached number two on the UK Albums Chart, staying in the chart for 17 weeks. The album also became an international success, peaking at number 16 in the European Albums Chart; from sales covering the 18 major European countries, staying in that chart for nine weeks. The album was certified gold by the British Phonographic Industry on 1 October 1987 and also by the Recording Industry Association of America on 19 September 1990.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.44

Votes

13844

Genres

  • New Wave
  • Post Punk
  • Indie

Reviews

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Thu Mar 11 2021
5

I don't want to sound hyperbolic, but I think I regret the years I spent hating on The Smiths more than I regret some of the bad relationships I've had.

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Mon May 29 2023
1

You should’ve seen the look on my face when this record got assigned to me this morning. I was ecstatic. After only 320 albums, I was about to cross The Smiths off the list. I’ve listened to the other two and this was the last. That meant the next 700 albums I had to listen to would be free from Morrissey’s dreary wrath. What a great fucking day. A few minutes later, a realization set in: “That fuck Morrissey has a solo career, too.” So I went over to the 1001 Albums Wikipedia page and looked at the “Artists” section. (This a good resource for when you want to feel like shit about how many more Elvis Costello or, in today’s case, Morrissey records you have to endure). “There can’t be more than one or two of his solo records on the list…not ideal, but it’s manageable,” I thought. There’s *four*. And I haven’t listened to a single one of them. Fuck. Someone put me out of my misery.

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Thu Nov 05 2020
1

Jangle Pop wankery. Sounds like an expensive 4track cassette demo, and i will never understand people's obsession with Morissey. Even Johnny Marr couldnt save this mess, and if this is heralded as the BEST Smiths record, I shudder to imagine what the other ones sound like. No standout tracks. Id give it zero stars if I could.

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Sat Feb 20 2021
1

Every moment I hear Morrissey makes every bone in my body go in to attack mode and it upsets me

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Thu Jan 14 2021
5

Was never really a Smiths fan, but now I can appreciate the musicality of the band. I still think that Morrisey is one of most overated singers of all time though.

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Sat Oct 16 2021
5

I love "The Queen Is Dead" as much as everyone else but this is their best album. Also fuck Morrissey

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Tue Oct 18 2022
2

The third Smiths album on this list and thank god this shit is done and over with. I've concluded I just do not care for this band. They write the same damn song over and over again and Morrissey's singing never changes. Once you've heard a couple of songs you've heard them all. For such an acclaimed band I was hoping that maybe they had variety but they found one thing and did it pretty mediocrely. Only thing I don't look forward to is there are 3 more Morrissey albums. Seriously why do people fellate this group and members so much? They are one trick pony. I would give it two stars but Girlfriend in a Coma is a great Douglas Coupland book so that's a plus in my book. 2.5/5

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Wed Jul 13 2022
5

Hey, this is the first album of this project that’s made me want to write a novel!! Death of a Disco Dancer may have just changed my life? Every song on this album resonated with me in some way. I was superficially acquainted with The Smiths before and always enjoyed what I heard, but listening to an entire album from start to finish has hit me so much harder. I can hear SO many ways they influenced so many of my favorite bands and artists, especially from my Brit pop/rock days in the early 2000s. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized that most of my favorite songs and sounds are at least a tiny bit dark (i.e. Susanne Sundfor, and some of Radiohead’s and Punch Brothers’ more experimental stuff). And while the songs on this album are very catchy and upbeat, they still have little dark underlying tones of melancholy, sadness, and disillusionment (not just lyrically). I favorited this album on Spotify, will absolutely revisit it, and look forward to exploring The Smiths’ discography more extensively!

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Tue Dec 13 2022
2

some folks here are saying that he sounds like a whiney wanker. I can't disagree

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Fri May 07 2021
3

Well, turns out I don't like the smiths. at least now i know

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Sat Jul 23 2022
2

Just felt very pretentious all the way through. Can't stand Morrisey's voice. Hard pass.

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Tue Mar 14 2023
5

I loved this and no longer know who I am.

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Thu Aug 17 2023
5

You can never be quite sure if it's overly serious, just regularly serious or actually making fun of everyone and everything. However, you can dance. It's about death, but it's catchy.

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Thu Sep 10 2020
5

Really good! Not what I expected. Is this New Wave ?

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Sun Jan 17 2021
5

I love this album. Great guitar lines and riffs, drum fills, orchestration and production, and interesting lyrics. Flows well from beginning to end noting their influence on future britpop bands and their own 60s influences, I love this album.

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Fri Jan 29 2021
5

A fantastic album, from the vocals to the layered instrumentation everything fits together so well. Truly ahead of its time and certainly laid the groundwork for countless musicians to follow.

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Thu Jun 03 2021
5

Every song is great and about half of them are perfect. The Smiths can never be 'cancelled'.

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Mon Jun 28 2021
4

Love The Smiths, but fuck Morrisey's stupid ass. Great album.

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Mon Nov 23 2020
5

know it backwards, grew up with it and love it

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Fri Feb 05 2021
5

Fantastic way to end an all too short run.

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Thu Jun 03 2021
5

One of the greatest album titles of all time and unlike many other albums, something truly unique. "Stop me if you've heard this one before" is all time classic material but "Girlfriend in a coma" is Moz and Marr at their bleak, melancholy best.

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Wed Jul 20 2022
5

I remember going out purchasing this for my 14th birthday in 1987, a couple of months after it had come out. I was already a big Smiths' fan and since it had been announced that this was to be their final album, I had all the emotions when buying it. The whole ordeal must have really left an impression with me because I can clearly remember everything about the experience, including bringing the vinyl home and putting it on for it's inaugural listen. "Girlfriend in a Coma" played almost every week on MTV's 120 Minutes that summer, along with "Stop Me if You Think You've Heard This One Before" and I was anxious to hear the rest of the material. I've listened to it on the regular since that day. I deeply love this album. The songs have imprinted themselves on me forever and, while a definitely brooding and sad album, it usually puts me in a good mood. It's one of those albums that I really need to just listen to the whole work instead of piecemeal songs. Top Tracks: *Death of a Disco Dancer (one of my favorite songs of all time) *Unhappy Birthday *A Rush and A Push and The Land is Ours *Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me

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Tue Jan 30 2024
5

A meticulously crafted masterpiece of melancholy.

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Sat Jul 17 2021
4

I discovered The Smiths by youtube recommendations, so I had no expectations going in. I loved them from the start. From Morrisey's insecure vocals to the introspective lyrics that cover social themes that we can all relate to. Absolutely love the rock sound that is not overbearing, leaves room for the vocals to take lead, and varies with each song to provide a unique experience. Of all The Smiths albums, this last one is their best produced piece that demonstrates their variation and talent. All the songs are great, but I did prefer songs from the rest of their catalogue that dive deeper into the narrator's conflicted emotions.

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Tue Oct 04 2022
2

Surprisingly, this album lacked the non-sensical rebellion of their earlier work. Maybe because Morrissey was just sort of along for this one, a way less self-absorbed version of him perhaps? Regardless, the album is actually decent in the background in a much less "What's that noise?" way and more of a 'Hey, what's this?". When the realization though that it is a Smiths album comes across, the reaction will be more surprise than borderline disgust at least.

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Wed Jul 13 2022
1

I can’t believe this album made a list of albums I must listen to before I die. I think this album actually brought me closer to death. As some vocalists have a range of approximately 3 to 4 octaves, Morrissey has a range of about 3 or 4 half steps on the chromatic scale. Shoot me now.

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Fri Feb 17 2023
1

I am not listening to this Nazi prick and his shite band. Never have (even changing the radio station if they come on) never will. I hate this band, especially their arsehole of a singer, and I always will. *googles* how to give a rating below zero

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Wed Apr 28 2021
5

About bloody time. The final studio album from the greatest band of the 80s. The marriage of Marr's riffs and Morrissey's lyrics here are some of their best. Its probably my second favorite Smiths album after queen is dead. But there was a happiness when it popped up this morning that only a truly great album can give you. No Skips on this one. Maybe it could be argued that the last two tracks aren't quite up with the soaring heights of the rest of the album but its getting a 5 anyway from me. 5/5

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Sat Mar 27 2021
5

Moz is an asshole, just getting that out of the way upfront. But he’s not w/o talent, and incredible wordplay. Plus Johnny Marr is amazing. Going into this w/ fresh ears. I always found the Smiths interesting in that they seemed to exist like New Order, where their singles were huge, but didn’t appear on the albums. And yet the albums were amazing and sold very well. That’s a fascinating, I guess, strategy? It only works b/c even the non-“radio hits” are just incredible. I saw Morrisey live at Riot Fest in 2016. He managed to convince a major festival in Chicago to stop selling sausages and other meat products about an hour before his set, or I guess he wouldn’t go on. He played 45 minutes of weird YouTube clips before he took the stage. His voice still sounds great, but fuck that guy. Smiths are always 5, regardless of his bullshit. I might not be so kind to his solo albums ( though I’ve heard good things about the first few). Whatever, this is a music review site, so I’ll review the album, not just politics. But FUCK his politics. Sorry ass bastard, he sounds like someone that’s never been laid

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Sat Jun 19 2021
5

I already knew and enjoyed a couple songs by The Smiths, but none of them are on this album. Regardless, I enjoyed the whole album a lot. It's just really nice and relaxing in a good, mellow, quality darkish synth-pop way. After it finished, I gave it a second spin right after. Great for an otherwise stressful day.

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Mon Mar 07 2022
5

A fine swansong for the best band of the 1980s. well the best band from the 1980s that comes from Manchester anyway...

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Tue Oct 18 2022
5

Its kinda funny. People have been telling me for literally years to listen to the Smiths and here they are, on Day 4 of a 1001 day challenge, to let me know how much I've missed from not listening to them over the years! A real outstanding album. The instrumentation is spot on and the lyrics and melody dance between serious and tongue and cheek from song to song. I was going to list all my favorite songs from the album but then realised I was just typing out half the album. I will say after my first two listens through the album, my favorite is probably Last Night I dreamt that Somebody Loved Me. But yeah, def got some Smiths catching up to do now! 5/5

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Tue Jun 04 2024
5

For me this is their best album. Where it all came together. I've never been the greatest Morrisey fan, or even the Smiths to be honest but I like a few of their tunes and this one has the best number of their hits concentrated. Well put together and quite slick in places Plus I think people like to kick Morrisey which is unfair.

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Wed Jun 05 2024
5

I think this is the best Smiths studio release, though it seems to generally be considered their worst. Johnny Marr and Morrissey are both at their best, the lyrics are at their most humourous and self-pitying (which, let's face it, is what Morrissey does best), and it has some of the best hooks in the Smiths discography. Johnny Marr's guitar playing on Death of a Disco Dancer is a real highlight. I think it also has more experimentation with their sound compared to the others, which makes me think their next album would have been something somewhat different, though unfortunately we'll never get to hear that. I can see why others would dislike this. Some of the songs are a bit weird (like the country rock song that's under 2 minutes), and Morrissey is definitely at his most dramatic and excessive here. Also credit to Andy Rourke, the most underrated Smith, for his bass playing.

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Tue Jan 26 2021
4

Strangeways is a great description to this album. I like the sound of each song and they focus on very interesting topics, like hoping your girlfriend will wake from a coma.

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Tue Nov 30 2021
4

Same review as the last Smiths album: I really do love the Smiths. I find them very nostalgic for my teenage years. This is a great album with some bangers. Only lost a star because Morrissey is a c*nt.

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Mon Dec 20 2021
4

One of those bands I knew I should listen to because of all the later ones they influenced. Excellent early alt/new wave with lyrics that inspire pop-punk and emo 20 years later

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Mon Jun 03 2024
4

i always love singing along in an exaggerated style of morrisey so my family looks at me weird

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Wed Oct 27 2021
3

Un énième album de Morrissey et de ses godiches de potes. Si le côté musical passe encore, le propos général est sensiblement le même qu'à chaque fois. Et vas-y qu'au fond tout le monde préfère sa propre race, et vas-y que j'arbore un badge pour un parti d'extrême droite, et vas-y que j'agite un drapeau britannique devant un décor évoquant le nazisme... Rien de nouveau sous le soleil.

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Tue Mar 21 2023
3

Great band with an awful singer who also happens to be an awful person. Favorite track: Unhappy Birthday

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Fri Dec 17 2021
2

It's ok. I just can't stand Morrisey

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Thu Feb 16 2023
2

I don't get it, the Smiths are only boring

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Sat Apr 01 2023
2

Ish. Morrissey has such a dreadful Kermit-y singing voice. Just this splatty wimpy mess of a voice. Gross!

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Sat May 20 2023
2

Morrissey sucks and I've never vibed with The Smiths' style of indie/jangle pop.

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Tue Feb 16 2021
1

This plays every time I have to use the Leeds ring road,Traveling to a doctors appointment were they ask me how many Units of alcohol I consume a week. I say 14 units...We both know this is a lie! As I wait to hand the pharmacist my prescription, I am behind a man in his 60s, Flat cap, brown leather gloves and a navy blue windbreaker. He dose not hand in his prescription but has some questions about it! Your insides sink with the sound of Loyd Grossman plummeting down a well with 1/6th of the Earth’s gravity....Your day from this point is going nowhere...Your day from this point is a Smiths Album

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Mon Feb 08 2021
5

Not my favorite album but it's still the smiths

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Tue Jan 26 2021
5

Melancholy, Morrissey has such a haunting voice.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

Excellent album, all songs are gold. 10/10 album!

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Wed Apr 07 2021
5

Con los Smiths me pasa esto de que me gustan cuando los escucho, pero no los escucho tanto. Quizá de repente sí bajonean, pero qué bonito suenan. La voz de Morrissey siempre me ha gustado mucho. Acá me gustan mucho "Death of a Disco Dancer" y "Unhappy Birthday", aunque no tengo skips. La canción final suena a una buena despedida y se agradece mucho que la música y las letras sean igualmente buenazas. 10/10

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Mon Jan 18 2021
5

I grew up on the queen is dead. I didn't get a copy of this until I was an adult. I remember not liking it much on my first listen, but it quickly grew on me. Death of a Disco dancer is such a perfect song for our times. Girlfriend in a coma is hilarious. If you've ever been in a toxic relationship, this song will hit way too close to home.

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

Always been a Smith's fan, never listened to an album though, just the hits. Enjoyed hearing this.

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Fri Feb 12 2021
5

Mooi album, leuk om eens een hele plaat te draaien, want normaal gesproken beperk ik me tot de hitjes...

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Mon Jun 28 2021
5

William, it was really something

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Mon Apr 05 2021
5

i have always want to be a manic pixie girl! not as good as their earlier album though. not sure why this one was selected as a representation of The Smiths

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Thu Jun 03 2021
5

Favourite song: I started something I couldn’t finish

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Sat Apr 17 2021
5

Morrissey ist ein Arschloch, aber die Musik seiner Band 10/10

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Mon May 17 2021
5

AMAZING! Where have I been in this world without The Smiths?

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Thu Jul 29 2021
5

Loved it. Never heard it before.

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Mon Aug 02 2021
5

So so good. Loved girlfriend in a coma. The depressing musical start to Last Night I Dreamt That SomEbody loved me was fuckinnsick

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Wed Sep 01 2021
5

Up there in the top two best smiths albums… which makes this an automatic 5*

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Thu Sep 09 2021
5

9 septembrie// lucram la prezentarea nutriento

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Tue Sep 21 2021
5

I enjoyed this album so much , I listened to the Queen is dead after

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Tue Sep 28 2021
5

I listened to this a few months ago on a recommendation from a friend and thought it was great then. I enjoyed it even more this time through. I struggle to pick a favorite track because I really enjoyed all of them and each one stands up well on its own. Maybe "Girlfriend in a Coma," which is ironic because I singled it out as an oddball the first time. I like this more than I remember liking The Queen is Dead (which is also fantastic) probably due to being not quite so dark overall.

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Wed Oct 20 2021
5

This really is a fantastic album. I'm kinda tempted to deduct a star because Morrissey is such a prat, but that hardly seems fair. Fave track - "Girlfriend in a Coma" maybe, on this listen through. I could honestly go with a different track each time, though - about three quarters of them are candidates....

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Mon Nov 08 2021
5

I used to be obsessed with this album. Obseeeeesed. I also used to be obsessed with the boy who introduced me to The Smiths, but eventually The Smiths became more important to me than he. Strangeways isn't even their best album, but perhaps it's their most fully realised, a wholly conceived album rather than a collection of song. A band on the verge of a nervous breakdown. I've generally given up on Los Smiths due to Morrissey being problematic, but he is but one quarter of the group so I am happy to revisit their charms from time to time. So let's praise Johnny Marr's guitar and the melodic suburban drama. The best song is "Stop Me If You Think That You've Heard This One Before".

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Mon Nov 29 2021
5

No soy parcial con los Smiths. Fue la primera música no comercial que empezó a gustarme. Los Smiths, Simple Mind y los Housemartins. De este disco en que ya iban desvaneciéndose recomiendo casi todo. Su hit "Girlfriend in a coma" o "I won't share you". Para mí es un 5 estrellas de arriba a abajo.

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Fri Dec 10 2021
5

Sum is greater than smiths individuals. Marr really pulls it together

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Mon Jan 10 2022
5

Ok. That last record tricked me. I somehow had the first song on repeat. It was atypical for the rest of the record, which included rock and rap elements. I didn't care for it. So I would have given Duck Rock a 1/5 stars. For the record. Now, Strangways, Here We Come... The best Smith's record, IMHO. Enough said. 5/5.

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Wed Jan 26 2022
5

I love this! This is sepia-toned, melancholic, rueful, brooding, gorgeous. I like the distorted guitars and jangly melodies.

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Tue Mar 01 2022
5

Baš sam Aniti pričao prekjučer da nikak' da dođu, a vjerujem da su sva njihova 4 studijska albuma na 1001. Imali su kratak rok stvaranje glazbe, bar što se tiče kao grupa. I šta su s tim napravili? Definitivno nešta najbolje ikad na ovom svijetu u tako malo vremena. Iako mi je ovo njihov ako baš moram reć najlošiji, ne mogu to tako nazvat jer je i ovaj album tak' jebeno dobar. Vremenski, album je savršen. 10 pjesama oko 36min, dosta. Možda bi se moglo nać da je kratak, ali su strpali u to malo - sve (that's what she said). Također, ovaj album ima drugi najbolji closer sa I Won't Share You, koji se nalazi iza prvog Suffer Little Children sa s/t albuma (jebiga zna se koji album ima najlošiji closer song). Reć ćemo nekako da između ta 4 albuma će biti isti broj zvjezdica, samo ću ja znati koliko je kod nekoga slabija zvjezdica, a kod koga opravdana!

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Sat Mar 12 2022
5

No hope, no harm; just another false alarm

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Fri Apr 01 2022
5

What a coincidence. In my previous rating I said that I had other music that I prefer for "sadboy time" and look no further but the king of mope himself: Morrissey. Not my favorite Smiths album but it's still great. Everything Smiths and Morrissey is a 5. One of those personal rules. I don't give a shit what kind of asshole Moz might actually be. His vocals and lyrics with Johnny Marr's guitar playing is always welcome to my ears.

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Mon Apr 18 2022
5

Another charming release by The Smiths. It’s not The Queen is Dead, but definitely is a masterpiece.

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Fri May 06 2022
5

I'm glad they took a different turn on what would be their final album and didn't replicate The Queen is Dead. It doesn't have as many notable songs, but the music and production feels more sophisticated. It feels more grand and luscious, especially the string arrangements. Girlfriend in a Coma is an excellent example of this. Stop Me If You've Heard This One Before is probably their most accessible song on here, but still holds a lot of weight. You do get a couple of others that sound like they could've been from the Queen era, including Unhappy Birthday. But then you get tracks like Death of a Disco Dancer and Last Night I Dreamt... that goes into darker territory that musically hasn't been explored much.

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Sun May 08 2022
5

Amazing album 10* Cover art 5/5

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Wed May 25 2022
5

Already listen to this fairly regularly, so knew it would be 5 stars before I played it. Love the lyrics and guitar riffs. "I Started Something I Couldn't Finish" my favourite track.

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Wed Jun 08 2022
5

Hello old friend. I much prefer Meat Is Murder, but I'll accept this on the list! Too short and a couple of throwaway numbers on this, but that's always been the Smiths style. Great album.

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