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

Horses

Patti Smith

1975

Horses

Album Summary

Horses is the debut studio album by American musician Patti Smith. It was released on November 10, 1975 by Arista Records. A fixture of the mid-1970s underground rock music scene in New York City, Smith signed to Arista in 1975 and recorded Horses with her band at Electric Lady Studios in August and September of that year. She enlisted former Velvet Underground member John Cale to produce the album. The music on Horses was informed by the minimalist aesthetic of the punk rock genre, then in its formative years. Smith and her band composed the album's songs using simple chord progressions, while also breaking from punk tradition in their propensity for improvisation and embrace of ideas from avant-garde and other musical styles. Smith's lyrics on Horses were alternately rooted in her own personal experiences, particularly with her family, and in more fantastical imagery. The album also features adaptations of the rock standards "Gloria" and "Land of a Thousand Dances". At the time of its release, Horses experienced modest commercial success and placed in the top 50 of the American Billboard 200 albums chart, while being widely acclaimed by music critics. Recognized as a seminal recording in the history of punk and later rock movements, Horses has frequently appeared in professional lists of the greatest albums of all time. In 2009, it was selected by the Library of Congress for preservation into the National Recording Registry as a "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" work.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.3

Votes

5499

Genres

  • Punk
  • Rock
Reviews
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View Author
Thu Jul 08 2021
3

Aujourd'hui, à l'ouverture de mon génèrateur favori, Patti Smith au menu. A la vision de la pochette, je me dis "tiens, un nouvel album d'un artiste effeminé à l'orientation sexuelle douteuse". Premier erreur de ma part, puisque après vérification de sa page Wikipedia, Patti n'est pas le diminutif de Patrick mais bien de Patricia. Mais la lecture de sa page Wikipedia m'en apprendra bien plus, et ce avant même d'avoir lancé l'album. Patrick est considéré comme le parrain de la punk, c'est donc sans surprise que je me lance dans un album composé exclusivemetn de musique folk rock. Pas la moindre note de punk, pas même une apparition de travestis a perruque blonde. Rien ne se sera passé comme prévu lors de cette écoute, mais n'est-ce pas la l'apanage de notre Robert, ne cesser de nous surprendre avec des albums tous moins interessants les uns que les autres?

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Thu Jul 08 2021
3

En me renseignant sur Patti Smith, j'ai très vite appris qu'elle était considérée par beaucoup comme la marraine du mouvement punk. La suite de mes recherches donna raison à cette affirmation puisque j'ai obtenu l'accès à de nombreuses photographies de Patti la montrant assise devant différents Carrefours City, canette de 8.6 à la main droite et demi-douzaine de laisses de clebs dans la gauche. Un portrait bien loin de l'image lisse à laquelle veulent nous faire croire les merdias.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

Full disclosure: I love Patti Smith. This review is less about the album itself and more about its influence so many years later. Gloria is one the best openers ever in my opinion and “Jesus died for somebody’s birthday sins but not mine” is an amazing opening line. You can tell Patti is a poet first with her lyrics. She also definitely loves to pay homage to her influences, covering My Generation and the references to other artists in songs. Particularly enjoyed Free Money and Land. We all know that I’m a lyrics first person, and so what better person to listen to than a poet. She is the godmother of punk and a paver of the path for riot grrls everywhere. I love her.

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Thu Aug 05 2021
5

The polish, I hate the polish. Gimme the real stuff. Patti Smith is a total badass and her passion and intense desire to create something regardless of natural talent and poise is infectious. There's a gravitational pull toward her I don't quite understand, it's certainly not her voice which I can understand puts some people off. I think it stems more from just doing whatever the fuck she wants to do and be completely unapologetic about it. I've seen this emulated for years in music, but it appears I've found the source of truth in this album. I love the builds in her songs, the way she slowly dips into song and by the end of it has erupted and is totally killing it with chaos like in Free Money and especially Birdland. I enjoyed her cover of Gloria and the Horses song is hella fun. To boil it down to the bare minimum, it's Patti Smith, and the quality of this music that I really love. It's refreshing not to sense an overt drive toward fame, generating sales and digging in to create a brand or perfect album. This just seems real, like it was MADE, not focus-tested, manufactured and built.

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Wed Nov 17 2021
5

Oh yeah, this was fantastic - a great discovery for me. I feel like PJ Harvey inherited some sort of spiritual crown from Patti Smith. Fave track - "Land" is a wonderful post-punk (proto-punk? para-punk?) odyssey!

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Mon Mar 29 2021
4

I thoroughly enjoyed this album. Eccentric white girl like Alanis but with less rock and more grunge undertones

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Thu Apr 08 2021
5

I am crazy about this album it is so good oml. Patti Smith is so cool wth. Also she has my favorite type of voice it's just so good. Most Memorable Song : All the songs were so good, but I have to say it was definitely her cover of "My generation" she absolutely destroyed that song. It was already an iconic song of the 60s and she brought it back. Other moments : Every other song, literally every single one of them. My favorites are Gloria, Land : Horses, and Break it up. I would reccomend listening to the live versions because they hit different.

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Fri May 07 2021
5

Beautifully unbeautiful. Raw. Punk. Lyrically magnificent, sonically tense that resolves and pushes.

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Thu Aug 05 2021
5

Wow! This album really surprised me. Labeled punk rock, this is not what I thought of when punk rock comes up. I’m getting a musical education for sure, which makes this experience so valuable. Props to u/SidledsGunnar! From the get go, Gloria is a blazing, fresh take on a classic. I’m down with the spoken word mixed with singing verses. The androgynous cover picture is a powerful statement contrary to how women in music are evaluated (today included let alone 1975), even though Patti downplayed it stating that’s just the way she dressed. From the subtle reggae beat on Redondo Beach, to the somber scenes of Birdland, to the dreaming hopes of Free Money, and the expansive Land, there is a lot to explore here. This album is fantastic. This album is in the 4 or 5 range, and I’m relying on the historical significance, and my desire to continue listening, to push it over the line.

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Tue Aug 17 2021
5

Amazing, amazing, amazing album. Patti smith is a legend. Considered by many to be the first punk album. Wish I could have seen her a CBGB back in the day.

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Thu Mar 11 2021
4

Had to do some reading to understand the context behind this album. An interesting story, and pretty bold music for its time, I think. My first was a little bit of shock about how odd / raw this album is, which it turns out was a major aim of hers.

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Sun May 23 2021
2

Never got this. Never sure I will. Seems to lack in hooks and memorable moments. 2/5

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Thu Nov 18 2021
1

Don't believe the hype. Nothing punk about this album. It's a boring slog. Find anybody else from the same CBGB era that Patti Smith was and they will be infinitely more punk and infinitely less boring.

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Wed Mar 31 2021
5

holy crap, can i give this 7 stars? so, so good, and what a great storyteller she is on top of the music

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Fri Apr 16 2021
5

It isn't hard to make the case for Patti Smith as a punk rock progenitor based on her debut album, which anticipated the new wave by a year or so: the simple, crudely played rock & roll, featuring Lenny Kaye's rudimentary guitar work, the anarchic spirit of Smith's vocals, and the emotional and imaginative nature of her lyrics -- all prefigure the coming movement as it evolved on both sides of the Atlantic. Smith is a rock critic's dream, a poet as steeped in '60s garage rock as she is in French Symbolism; "Land" carries on from the Doors' "The End," marking her as a successor to Jim Morrison, while the borrowed choruses of "Gloria" and "Land of a Thousand Dances" are more in tune with the era of sampling than they were in the '70s. Producer John Cale respected Smith's primitivism in a way that later producers did not, and the loose, improvisatory song structures worked with her free verse to create something like a new spoken word/musical art form: Horses was a hybrid, the sound of a post-Beat poet, as she put it, "dancing around to the simple rock & roll song." [Source: https://www.allmusic.com/album/horses-mw0000198924]

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Wed Mar 17 2021
5

Savages + Janelle Monae. Quite enjoyed.

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Wed May 12 2021
5

One of my favorite albums of all time. Absolute classic and and it's so import for the influence that followed after its release. Will always recommend this one to anyone who will listen.

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Wed Aug 25 2021
5

This album is so ridiculously influential, it seems inconsequential to rate it. Patti Smith's debut is so many things at once. It is primal, messy, poetic, delicate, irreverent, rebellious, and beautiful all at once. This album is much indebted to earlier rock forms, but she manages to incorporate those forms into the mix in a new and exciting way. Often called the godmother of punk, Patti Smith to me seems like a natural successor to the Beat movement with her stream of consciousness lyrics and spoken word passages. Simply put, this album is essential and incredible.

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Sat Oct 30 2021
5

Patti Smith is a goddamned national treasure and I'll fight anyone who disagrees. From the very first line of this album ("Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine") to the haunting, closing notes of Elegie, this is an incredible debut album. 5 stars.

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Fri Mar 11 2022
5

A doom-scroll through Patti’s Twitter feed circa 1975, which tends gloomily apocalyptic—“Jesus died for somebody’s sins but not mine,” “Little sister, the sky is falling,” and “Down by the ocean it was so dismal” setting the tone. As a real-life poet, her storytelling and language prowess is audacious. Not that you should expect to follow what she’s saying in a strictly logical sense. Forget narrative lacuna, these songs abound with non-sequiturs and sense-defying leaps that you’ll either find tantalising or infuriating. She doubles down on her prophet come-on with a crystal ball-gazing delivery, slurring and ululating and intoning in a way that’s frankly obnoxious. And there’s the rub. For all the meaning-mongering, this is rock music. Punk music, to be exact. Therefore, feeling—not logic—is king. Thumb your nose, cock a snook, be a brat. Be a kid, for god's sake. And lest we forget, kids come in all shapes and sizes, including moody and tenebrous. But what really sticks it to the squares is that all the posturing is shored up by a sinewy, febrile groove, resplendent with sizzling hooks, electric boogie, and Lenny Kaye’s whip-smart guitar.

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Sat Oct 08 2022
5

The nice thing about this website is that I’m getting an opportunity to listen to albums that have been sitting on my radar for too long. Horses is one of them. I’ve been aware of it for years and it should’ve been right up my alley: I love the 70’s NYC art/punk scene (Television, Richard Hell, Ork Records), The Frogs aped the cover of Horses for “It’s Only Right and Natural”…more than enough reasons for me to have checked this out. Now here I am, 41, wondering why no one sat me down and forced me to listen to this record A Clockwork Orange style. It’s that good. I’ll put it this way, if you were to listen to Horses and Television’s Marquee Moon back to back, you’d automatically be the coolest person in whatever room you walked into afterwards. If you like the NYC art rock scene (Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth, Television) and haven’t heard this record…don’t be like me, go listen now. Horses is one of the rare records on this list that I hadn’t heard and actually needed to hear before I die.

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View Author
Thu Aug 05 2021
4

Thank you, 1001 Albums Generator! Patti Smith is an artist I've constantly heard of, but never explored beyond "G-L-O-R-I-A." After finally listening to "Horses," I totally get the hype. Sometimes raw and punk, sometimes like an open mic or poetry slam (a good one, not the cringey emo ones). Another thing I've been thinking about with this experiment is the evolution of musical styles. With Patti I thought about the evolution of female rock singers - the 70s took us from Janis Joplin to Patti Smith to Heart to the Slits, and so much of the 80s and 90s was built from those foundations. Without Janis, would any of these women have found their style? I feel like she really opened the door for dynamic rock frontwomen. Patti Smith absolutely takes that opening and runs with it. Between "Birdland," "Land," and "American Pie," it certainly is the week of long songs. Kind of didn't mind the length though - they keep it interesting.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
3

meh

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Tue Feb 09 2021
2

Oh you mean female Bob Dylan? Besides her song bird land making me want to kill myself she was alright.

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Tue Jan 19 2021
1

I might have made a huge mistake partaking in this endeavor.

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Sat Feb 06 2021
1

I don't like this. Sounds like the same arty shit from The Velvet Underground. Complety overrated. And what's up with the wining vocals.

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Mon Jun 07 2021
1

The music press loved her in the 70s, which was always a bad sign and I never saw the attraction. I remember seeing her doing Horses live on the OGWT and hated it (she also murdered Because the Night). Nothing on this album changes my opinion.

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View Author
Tue Aug 10 2021
1

Ahhh another "critics' favourite" - likely a longer debate but why are these so often terrible? So this exhibits a "punk attitude" which means what exactly? It's a little bit funny (or annoying if any of it mattered at all) that it's likely the same critics at the time who loved this labeled prog-rock as "pretentious" - but what could be more pretentious than this sonic shit sandwich? Bad meandering poetry loudly (so dreadfully loudly) mixed over mind-numblingly boring boring boring basic 3 chord blues-ish music and songs that go on so fffffffffffking long.... As a whole the album was 43 minutes too long. 1/10 1 very dim star

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Tue Nov 17 2020
5

great stuff

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Wed Dec 09 2020
5

Aggressive and anti-establishment. Hard hitting and very vocal

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

Groovy

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

wowow ive been sleeping on patti smith thus whole time

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Sat Feb 13 2021
5

Excellent.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
5

One of the best debuts

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Thu Jan 21 2021
5

The first 5 on my list! I loved this record!

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Sun Jan 24 2021
5

How I never knew of this woman is shocking. This album is life being lived now. How she sings of things effected, is much insight and I feel it.

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Wed Jan 27 2021
5

I mean she made Van Morrison punk and made it sound good. Patti rules. She was not only one of the first female punk voices but also just one of the first punks in general. She was known for speaking her mind, being loud, not taking shit, and of course her incredible writing. While researching the album I saw that she was a poet, which makes perfect sense. On the past few albums we listened to when you saw an 8+ minute song coming up you knew it was time for that one weird, experimental track on the album. With Patti, all of her long songs (Birdland, Horses) felt like beautiful vignettes where you wanted to catch every single word. The "Gloria" and "My Generation" covers are fantastic and really show off the raw energy, abandon and commitment she gives to her songs. My other standout was "Break It Up." Punk started as an inclusive genre for those going against the grain but I feel like it bred a lot of big, douchey male personalities talking about what is and isn't punk. Its great to see it's origins in a poetic woman making songs for herself.

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Sat Feb 06 2021
5

This is brilliant. Start of the album absolutely bangs, then the end is wonderfully weird. Gloria is an awesome song

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Fri Feb 19 2021
5

I've been following Patti Smith on instagram for a year but I've never actually listened to an album before. But I really liked this! The lyrics were really powerful and it just made me feel a lot of things. Either a high 4 or low 5.

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Tue Feb 02 2021
5

Another I've owned for 25 years

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Sun May 09 2021
5

AMAZING. Danced while walking the dog. Love the spoken poetry. Love the live versions. Totally special.

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Fri Jun 18 2021
5

a classic, and for good reason... horses horses horses horses horses

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Mon Aug 02 2021
5

she is perfect this is perfect i love you patti smith

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Sat Aug 21 2021
5

Ich habe erst das erste Lied gehört und gebe schon 5 Sterne. Das war solo gut und sie ist eine Ikone. Bin mir sicher dass ich es mir nicht mehr anders überlege

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Sun Sep 05 2021
5

I grew up on the music of many musicians who cite Patti Smith as one of their most important influences, but I never really listened to her music. This is great stuff, both in its cultural context (totally get how and why this was so groundbreaking when it was released in '75) and as music that stands the test of time. I have no idea if she's listened to by today's teens and twentysomethings, but I have a feeling if they were to hear this album, they'd like it (not in the fuddy-duddy "music was better back them" way -- I sincerely don't believe that -- but in terms of the music and lyrics connecting with them).

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Sat Sep 11 2021
5

THE BEST

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Thu Sep 16 2021
5

Her voice is so good

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Fri Sep 24 2021
5

Pretty flawless this is. It feels like one of those albums I should have been listening to for ages and regret not experiencing in my teens (early 20s now). Patti Smith's vocals and energy is entertaining and a good listen. I particularly love how the two songs covered are part of melodies, it gives them a twist and a perfect example of how songs should be covered (i.e. make it your own). Was also pleased with the instrumentation with this and pleasantly suprised to find Tom Verlaine on Break It Up. Apart from the two melody tracks, my favourite tracks were Kimberly and Free Money.

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Fri Oct 15 2021
5

Patti is giving me life today! This is an obvious 5. Iconic debut album. You love to see it: an amazingly talented badass woman at the helm of the punk movement. Fuck yeah!

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Fri Nov 12 2021
5

Thoroughly enjoyed it throughout, not much more to say other than that

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Tue Nov 30 2021
5

Practically perfect.

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Wed Dec 01 2021
5

Whoa, where did THIS come from?! This was killer! The first track goes hard, and while not every song is as good as that one, it manages to keep up some pretty solid momentum throughout. Super good.

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Sun Dec 05 2021
5

Nicht für jeden etwas, aber ich mags.

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Fri Dec 17 2021
5

She did an exclusive Swedish gig on Lisebergs Big Scen 2014 and I regret so terribly that I did not go there 🙁

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Tue Jan 04 2022
5

Love it

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Mon Jan 17 2022
5

Poesía musicada de Patti Smith. Vinilo total.

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Sat Jan 29 2022
5

Poesía musicada de Patti Smith. Vinilo total.

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

One of the things that impresses me the most about Horses is its highs and lows. This is an album that hits the peakiest peaks and rockiest bottoms. Songs rise and fall in shape, mood, volume, never ending where they start. Patti Smith enunciates (or doesn’t) as if she just needs to work this shit out for herself and doesn’t really care if you understand it. That means that, even if I can’t completely follow the through-line of the lyrics, every once in a while a phrase leaps out and keeps me curious, enthralled. (“Your soul was like a network of spittle…”) Of course I love Gloria and its opening line “Jesus died for somebody’s sins but not mine,” especially the second time when she is so quietly smug on “but not mine.” Birdland is an epic poem that starts with some nice piano and Smith’s sweet, almost girlish voice describing the funeral of a farmer and the son he left behind. “It was as if someone had spread butter on all the fine points of the stars, ‘cause when he looked up, they started to slip. Then he put his head in the crux of his arm and he started to drift.” And on the word “drift,” her voice slides into her more familiar growl, and we are beamed into space with the son, his farmer father, a raven, and some doo-wop. Incredible. Free Money starts again with delicate piano that is soon overtaken by relentless rhythm guitar and drums, ending in frenetic chaos. Kimberly is a 70s punk take on 60s girl groups, I think, and there’s something captivating about the refrain, “Little sister the sky is falling. I don’t mind. I don’t mind.” Like Birdland, the track Land is epic and made me all like, “Whoa!” There is so much here: “From the other ends of the hallway, a rhythm is generating.” “He pressed him against a lockah!” “He saw horses, horses, horses, horses, horses, horses, horses, horses, do you know how to pony like bony maroney?” (Holy shit. WHAT???) “…sperm coffin…” “Can’t you show me nothin’ but surrender?” “Except for one who sees his possibilities. What he sees is possibilities. Seize us, possibilities.” And in the middle of all that is some great rock and roll piano which, as we may have already discussed, I am a sucker for. Finally, the cover of this album is itself a work of feminist art and I am deeply in love with it. Can I give it seventeen stars?

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

That was rockin’! I dug it! I thought it would be more noisy, for some reason, but it was great as it was.

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

Now that's what I'm talking about. An album that both changed music and kicked ass. Patti Smith, everyone!

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Tue Feb 01 2022
5

Me ha gustado mucho

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Tue Feb 15 2022
5

Amazing early punk. Like a female Bob Dylan with an edge.

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Tue Feb 22 2022
5

The sheer greatness of the first track carries the rest of this thing when it occasionally gets a little too artsy for my tastes. Essential listening, IMO; even if you don’t love it, this is an important album.

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Sat Mar 12 2022
5

She brought rock to poetry

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Mon Mar 21 2022
5

This is one of those albums that are so career defining and important, it should be heard by everyone. When I bought this album back in the early 80's or so, I have to admit I didn't take to it right away. It's an intense listen and it's not for everyone, but again it should be heard. It's a "game-changer" in so many ways and changed the way feminism and woman's issues were viewed by mainstream culture and music. Another defining moment in the 70's. Enough babble, have a listen!

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Fri Mar 25 2022
5

She's the coolest girl I know 😍 So clever with lyrics and style, easy 5.

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Sat Apr 16 2022
5

What a voice! Such an interesting album.

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Sun Apr 17 2022
5

A classic for a reason, bolstered by two art-punk epics in birdland and land

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Sat Apr 23 2022
5

The sound of music reminiscent of that I already know is pretty common. What's rare is for that feeling of recognition to be tilted at just the right angle. Horses hit me that way and at exactly the right time: I heard an obviously seminal punk album but also something country, something city, just enough obvious weirdness to draw the ear deep in. Deep into a very rough recording, but I didn't bounce out, and I'm glad of that.

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Thu May 19 2022
5

it has been WAY too long since i listened to this basically perfect album

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Wed May 25 2022
5

Unexpected

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Mon May 30 2022
5

One of my favourite albums of all time. It's an easy 5. If the ratings went any higher it'd be a 10.

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Tue Jul 12 2022
5

The longer tracks are great.

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Sun Jul 17 2022
5

Aliens, sacrilege, stolen money, apocalypse in a major key, drowning sisters, a jet plane, I IV V chord progressions galore, and horses, horses, horses, horses. A masterpiece full stop. This SHOULD have been a late genre Post-Punk great, except for the fact that it predates even the Ramones' first album by half a year, leaving this artistic fever dream of Rock n' Roll ephemera as a crucial cornerstone of all Punk and anything Alt to follow.

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Fri Jul 22 2022
5

Glorious!

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Sat Jul 30 2022
5

great

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Thu Aug 11 2022
5

I love her energy.

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Sun Sep 18 2022
5

Started the first track and it's pretty cool but my head hurts so much right now I gotta come back to it after painkillers.

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Tue Sep 20 2022
5

Great proto punk from the Patti meister. Can hear a bit of PJ in there as well as all sorts. Patti has a great way with words and being pissed off both things I enjoy.

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Sat Sep 24 2022
5

This is great early punk some really weird song structures

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Fri Sep 30 2022
5

Slayed

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Tue Oct 04 2022
5

This was incredible

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Thu Oct 06 2022
5

Fricken badass

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Fri Oct 07 2022
5

brb listening to a whole bunch more Patti Smith

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Tue Oct 11 2022
5

CD

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Wed Oct 19 2022
5

Great sound. Great lyrically. No criticism.

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Fri Oct 28 2022
5

I love this album from the very first line that "Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine". The excitement in this music is still vibrant. The poetry and emotion and raw rock. Free Money and Redondo Beach are favorites but the whole record sparkles and crackles.

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Fri Nov 04 2022
5

Well it's a bloody tour de force isn't it. One of my all time favourite albums. Just phenomenal. Birdland is beautiful, long and excellent. Gloria is just excellent. I love Free Money, always gets me going. What an album.

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Fri Nov 04 2022
5

'Gloria' strikes such a chord in me

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Fri Nov 04 2022
5

What an album! This review comes from an oftentimes punk hater and a major lyric enthusiast. Patti is clearly the godmother of punk and a genius at combining poetry and punk. That opening track and even opening line is absolutely glorious!! I don't know how but she makes me love punk and as a result love her. What an exciting, spicy, punchy album of twists and turns and well under an hour in length, what's not to love?!

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Tue Nov 22 2022
5

Simply stunning - the drive, the propulsion, the energy. Smith’s evocative lyrics, elusive but absorbing, encourage repeat listening and then music is pulsating the whole along. The inspiration this album provided is extraordinary. Is it punk? It’s too focused for that. Punk breaks things. This inspires and leads.

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Wed Dec 02 2020
4

Epic.

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Mon Nov 16 2020
4

8.4/10

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Sun Dec 06 2020
4

actually good

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Sat Dec 19 2020
4

4,5

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Wed Feb 10 2021
4

Great rock and roll. Great vocals. Great energy. A solid album with some odd little talks

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Tue Apr 27 2021
4

3.6

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Tue Mar 23 2021
4

Seems very ahead of its time (75!) and can hear later artists this album must have influenced

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Wed Jan 13 2021
4

I enjoyed this album her voice would sometimes sound strange to me but i like the instruments

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Sat Jan 16 2021
4

elegie top song liked the vocals, but the instrumentals were clashing and very of the time

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Sat Jan 16 2021
4

Would’ve been 5 but it made me wet my pants

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

Better than I thought

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Mon Jun 07 2021
4

GLORIA! Reminds me of high-energy French pop, kinda sick

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Fri Jan 15 2021
4

Solid

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Mon Feb 01 2021
4

good stuff, nice short listen and the extra tracks on that "deluxe version" are not bad either

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Wed Jan 27 2021
4

I haven't really connected with Patti Smith, I think mostly because I don't know a lot of her story - I know that and her poetry have been a big thing for others [cough cough, Emily]. That said, I see why this is an album you need to listen to! I especially liked 'Free Money'. I couldn't take the time I wanted to more deeply focus on lyrics so I have to recognize that. But on a top level they felt powerful and I really got a kick out of the music - which felt of its era, yet transcending it. You also have to recognize the influence she had on musicians of her time and generations of punks afterwards deserves some serious respect. Adding this to a rotation so I can keep listening and thinking!

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Sat Jan 16 2021
4

(Classic rock / Art rock) Great album with elements of punk rock & poetry and a unique vocal delivery. Birdland is a stand-out track, featuring distorted guitar that borders on noise rock. 8/10

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Tue Feb 16 2021
4

Noice

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Wed Jan 27 2021
4

Good album! I can really see why this is considered a groundbreaking album. I hear nirvana, sublime, the eagles and more in these songs. Favorite was “Free Money”, and only song I really didn’t like was “Birdland” sounded a bit like Courtney Barnett, and that’s a bad thing. Wanted to eat this a 3.75, so that means a 4!

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Tue Feb 02 2021
4

Beautiful.

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Tue Feb 16 2021
4

It's definitely not my new favorite album but there are definitely some interesting things in it. I really what this sounded like to people in 1975 -- I suspect elements of it have become more common since then so it may have really stood out at the time.

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Mon Dec 28 2020
4

Not the best music to concentrate to, but I enjoyed it. It has a special sort of intensity all its own. Reminded me a lot of Stevie Nicks and some of the wilder Fleetwood Mac songs. The My Generation live cover at the end was really shitty though.

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Thu Mar 04 2021
4

Enjoyed Kimberly and Break it Up

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Tue May 25 2021
4

Put off by "punk" links in many write-ups, but in fact far closer to Jim Morrison and the Doors. Not something I'd listen to frequently, but enjoyable all the same. Very accomplished debut.

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Wed Mar 17 2021
4

Didn't know Patti Smith until today, not bad at all !

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

Very strong energy in this album; almost like a female Tom Petty vocal tone. Experimental areas, sounds like a PJ Harvey influence. Storytelling has some interesting wordplay as well. Free Money is a wonderful song 😍 A lot of energy switching throughout this album, but regardless; some really intoxicating rock tunes amongst the selection here. Definitely would listen to Free Money more.

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Mon Jun 07 2021
4

Really enjoyed listening to this on a sunny day! Defo worth the hype :)

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Thu May 13 2021
4

not my style

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Tue May 11 2021
4

Rating: 7/10 Best songs: Gloria, Free money, Horses

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Fri Jul 02 2021
4

Fantastic album. Flowing and unique.

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Thu Jul 22 2021
4

A very fun bit of art punk. Definitely a lot of power and passion behind the lyrics, and the band rips through like a tornado. Great if you like poetry and hard rock mixed, not as much if that’s not your thing.

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Tue Jun 29 2021
4

Such raw emotion. I love her

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Mon Jul 12 2021
4

I know why all my favorite punk singers sound like they do now. Patti Smith is yelping, yelling, and sometimes just speaking all over this record. It felt like listening to a beat poet with a backing band that knew three chords and four notes for leads. So raw and unpredictable, I was just taken by her style. I think I would've hated this record if she just sang it straight. Super cool, big no fucks given energy. Wasn't huge on when she switched up with the reggae Redongo Beach or jazzy, weird Birdland. Standout songs were Gloria, Free Money, and Land. 8/10 but I could easily see this becoming 9/10 if I kept listening to it

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Mon Aug 02 2021
4

Amazing!

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Thu Aug 19 2021
4

What a record.

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Mon Aug 23 2021
4

she doesnt really sing about horses that much or my little pony :(((

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Sat Sep 04 2021
4

En ocasions, sobretot a les extenses 'Birdland' i 'Land', està més a prop de la poesia recitada que de la cançó, però la banda que l'acompanya, la seva actitud i compromís amb el que diu, i cançons pròpiament dites com 'Break It Up', 'Free Money' o la versió de 'Gloria' fan del disc un d'aquelles obres magnes que apareixen molt de tant en tant. 4,5

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Sun Sep 12 2021
4

I love her voice, lyrics and tracks. Slam dunks. No comment. (7/10) Favourite Tracks: Gloria: In Excelsis Deo, Free Money

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Tue Sep 14 2021
4

Awesome sound, great covers and live versions

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Fri Sep 17 2021
4

With the exception of 'Gloria: In Excelsis Deo', each song felt (to me anyhow) like it was recorded right on the edge of creation and destruction. The underlying music ebbed and flowed with a casual fludity, while the lyrics and vocalizations alternated between settled and urgent. It felt intimate and meaningful and I'm left with a sense of loss for not having had the opportunity to appreciate the album it in it's context, in it's time.

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Sun Sep 26 2021
4

Really good album, kept me engaged all the way

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Tue Sep 28 2021
4

This album is rare. I like very much to listen to these pre-punk albums. Patti Smith is one of my favourites. Great album

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Thu Sep 30 2021
4

I can see why she’s a legend

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Mon Oct 11 2021
4

Horses

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Tue Oct 12 2021
4

Can totally see why this is a classic. Feel a need a few more listens to truly appreciate it, but I’ve a feeling it will really grow on me.

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Sat Oct 30 2021
4

A fine album with one great song and some other very good songs. Patti's poetry is evident throughout; raw, poignant, provocative. And it Rawks. 4 🌟

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Fri Nov 05 2021
4

I was nervous going in, but this is a very good album

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Mon Nov 08 2021
4

Quite goood

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Wed Nov 10 2021
4

Generally pretty good, I liked it more than I expected. Would've liked it more if it wasn't for the slow, spoken parts. Not really sure how to rate this. It would be a high 3 or low 4, but I think I'm gonna be generous and give it a 4.

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Mon Nov 15 2021
4

Nice, strange singing style

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Wed Nov 17 2021
4

Patti Smith is crazy, but engaging. I hear a lot of her influence in Alanis Morissette.

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Wed Nov 17 2021
4

Familiar with album. Love Redondo Beach and a few other tracks. Overall very good.

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Fri Nov 26 2021
4

I think my favorite so far

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Wed Dec 01 2021
4

A classic sounding album even though it is commonly labeled as punk. Gloria is a fantastic cover.

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Fri Dec 03 2021
4

cool sound. 1975, reminds me a bit of a female jagger. Gloria is cool, Rock sound, Land: horses, etc great long song.

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Tue Dec 07 2021
4

Well hot dang that was fun. The answer to the question: What if Jim Morrison was a woman?

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Wed Dec 08 2021
4

She’s a badass. Pretty alt but she’s got power

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Wed Dec 15 2021
4

I had a friend who love this album. As in, it changed her life. So at the time, I listened to it expecting to have a spiritual awakening but... it was just a decent rock album. It took me a while to get over the disappointment, but now, yeah, it's a really good rock album. It's thrilling when Patti goes off in the longer poetic parts, music that could have only come out of NY-effing-C. And of course, in the midst of it all are some decent hooks. An iconic classic.

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Sat Jan 01 2022
4

4.0 + A spirited performance that flows loosely, guided along by Patti Smith's poetic musings.

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Mon Jan 03 2022
4

Horses by Patti Smith (1975) Pope Francis invited Patti Smith to sing at the Vatican’s 2014 Christmas concert, where she performed a soulfully convincing rendition of “O Holy Night”. That might seem improbable for an artist who began her career by delivering the first line of the first track of her first album with the words “Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine”. However, hang in there. It gets good. Smith’s debut album “Horses” is in the genre of punk rock, but somehow I feel that punk is simply the ungilded cage from which the canary sang. Any other cage would have sufficed. She certainly doesn’t sound like what punk became. It may be that ‘punk’ is simply a term used for recorded music by artists who are determined to dispense with conventional notions of ordered beauty—adopting a minimalist, bratty, antiestablishment mindset. I don’t know. But to understand and appreciate Patti Smith (and especially this particular album), it is better to be familiar with Baudelaire, Rimbaud, Eliot, Dylan, Baraka, and Burroughs than to be conversant with Stooges, Ramones, Sex Pistols, and Clash. This is because “Horses” is not, primarily, music. It is poetry. One could appreciate the art here even if it were presented as simply the spoken word (although sometimes the word spoken has something to say about the mid 70s ‘wrong turn’ of rock ‘n roll). Take this quatrain and tell me if I’ve gotten off at the wrong stop: “It was as if someone had spread butter On all the fine points of the stars 'Cause when he looked up They started to slip.” Patti Smith as a poet presents feelings with vividness and authenticity, revealing an excellent mastery of metaphor, and cool command of word choice, cadence, and color. And in each of the nine compositions on this record she is in control of the movement from verse to verse, satisfying the hearer’s need for development, suspense, insight, and closure. Plus, of course, it doesn’t hurt for the poet/performer to have a good ear for euphony. Musically, most of these tracks begin with a compositional head fake toward jazz, then quickly settle in to decently performed rock strains (progressive, avant-garde), as the listener eagerly follows wherever Smith is leading. And despite the apparent (I would argue, ironic) blasphemy of the first line, there is vicarious atonement throughout. Somebody suffers for someone. It seems she is capable of a theological head fake as well. I could play this album all day. And think about it till next Tuesday. 4/5

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Thu Jan 06 2022
4

Fiona Apple but faster. Some of the guitar work sounds like the Strokes.

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Fri Feb 11 2022
4

Goodness me that VOICE

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Fri Feb 11 2022
4

My album notes didn't save from yesterday, but it's a 4

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Fri Feb 11 2022
4

Even though this isn't an album I'd pop on any day of the week, I think the raw power on display is worthy of 4 stars. Also didn't realize how influential this album is in rock history.

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Mon Feb 14 2022
4

Great singer of the '70s.

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Tue Feb 15 2022
4

Powerful rock anthems!

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Fri Feb 18 2022
4

Great album

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Mon Feb 21 2022
4

Listened to quite a few times before. Great early proto punk album.

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Tue Feb 22 2022
4

Top album, zon prachtige stem en zo tijdloos

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Mon Feb 28 2022
4

Any review of "Horses" must cover at least the following: - Patti Smith invented punk, new-wave, and probably poetry as well. - "Jesus died for somebody's sins, but not mine" is bigger than Jesus. - And it's even more impressive because she's a woman as well, you know. Much of the above is overstated, but still rings true in a sense... so I won't bore you all with it again here. But it must be said that listening to "Horses" as part of a series of 1001 albums to hear before dying, it stands out as a masterstroke. It was 1975! The 1970s had only just settled in, prog was about to die off, and Smith is here channelling the wild abandon of punk, the cool detachment of new wave, and sheer poetic beauty of the avant-garde. "Gloria" is the album in a nutshell, the track everyone should hear as a bare minimum. The solemnity of its piano intro (and yes, that opening line), the slow build of the guitars and the moment where the beat shifts from lilting swing to a sudden, propulsive straight rhythm. Eventually, after Smith yelps and howls her way through the verses, there's the catharsis of the chorus, a transformed beast from the Them's 60s hit. It's a perfect introduction to an icon of rock. It's true that there is some indulgence in the two nine-minute tracks ("Birdland" and "Land"), but it's played so damn well. The vocals are astonishing throughout both of these long pieces, moving from plaintive and held back ("it was as if someone had spread butter on the stars they started to slip") to a frothy-mouthed frenzy of machine gun rhymes. The band move perfectly to support her, even without relying on drums in the stunning "Birdland": they allow a listener to get completely lost in the momentum, and match Smith's intensity expertly. In between the three epics, the other songs worthy of praise are "Kimberley", where Smith displays a much needed softer, commercial leaning side, and the frenetic "Free Money", with a glorious snare breakdown and a slow build almost as electrifying as "Gloria". For an artist praised as looking ahead and signalling a hundred new movements at once, Smith is still lovingly indebted to rock which has come before. The closing "Elegie", for Jimi Hendrix (and lifting a couple of his lyrics) is Smith at her most sincere. Elsewhere, she takes delight in bastardising tradition, shaping pop standards to keep up with her restless vision and rapid vocalisation. "Gloria" and "Land of a Thousand Dances" are two such examples, and delivered with such originality that could only be admired. Most of this commentary is what any review could tell you. "Horses" is universally loved as an alternative album and will still be thought of as such 100 years from now. Objectively, it is of course a 10/10: but I'm going to have to dock slightly based on some personal preference. "Break It Up" is a collaboration with Smith's sometime partner and fellow CBGB's star Tom Verlaine- other than his signature guitar and an impassioned vocal performance in the chorus, it's fairly unremarkable and possesses the album's most mediocre hook. "Redondo Beach" is lightweight reggae coming in between the incredibly intense high watermarks of "Gloria" and "Birdland": as a result it almost feels too insubstantial, not enough substance. It also hasn't particularly aged well and is the most in-step with the 1970s of all the songs here. Even though "Land" is generally phenomenal and one of the most intense, vivid flights of fancy through abuse, penknives, wordplay, escape, dance and horses, it loses a point for its jam session which is the exact same chords, tempo and rhythm as "Gloria". As a bottom line, though, maybe I still haven't caught up yet. Giving "Horses" a 4 doesn't change my mind on its classic status, and it shouldn't change yours.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
4

It finally arrived on the lineup: An album that I acknowledge as genuinely good, but personally disliked. There's no good reason for me to dislike it, and I know that--but stylistically it's very far off from what I enjoy. This doesn't diminish the quality of the vocals, the songwriting, the melody lines, or anything else about it. It doesn't change the fact that this album deserves to be here. A little extra shout-out to my fave track, Gloria: In Excelsis Deo (the first one). Five-star quality here, but I'm docking a star because I didn't personally enjoy it. I know that's unfair, but life is unfair and that's just how it goes sometimes.

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Mon Mar 21 2022
4

Turns out I know this album less well than I thought; only a few songs are actually all that familiar. But definitely liking it a lot. Even the weird pseudo-reggae of Redondo Beach worked for me, somewhat unexpectedly (what was it about 80s new wave and strange reggae?!) Birdland a bit tedious, I guess. Free Money is great though. Break it Up too. And Horses is obviously amazing. Like Elegie too.

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Wed Mar 30 2022
4

She cool

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Wed Apr 06 2022
4

It's a good album from one of the mistresses of psychedelic rock from the 70s. I respect her a lot.

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Sat Apr 09 2022
4

Already listened

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Tue Apr 19 2022
4

This opens like its from the 70s. Redondo Beach is a fun forward feeling song. Birdland is a strange song choice for the third spot, but if a spoken work poem is more your speed then its fine. It has fun dynamics at least. Break It Up is a cool ballad. I'm on the fence on if I want to hear this one again.

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Tue Apr 26 2022
4

Teksten die soms buiten het ritme van de muziek vallen: speciaal, maar op een of andere manier past het wel

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Wed Apr 27 2022
4

What a vocal delivery! Such power and passion put into the words, with a unique blend of punk and improvisation. Felt like a concert throughout.

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Thu Apr 28 2022
4

This music has grit! I liked it.

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Sat Apr 30 2022
4

Over the years the critics rarely mention Patty Smith without mentioning this album in the same sentence, and especially her version of Gloria. I think her combination of (pre) punk and rambling poetry is a great one-two punch. There are brilliant tracks but some are a bit over the top for me, Birdland, for examples. I think her song-writing improved over subsequent albums, but this is a great debut and a milestone in the development of punk rock. The Robert Mapplethorpe photo is classic.

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Sat Apr 30 2022
4

Pattis is a cool artists who actually cares. She was quite influential on, many artists I really like such as PJ Harvey. The punk OGs like the Ramones were also influenced by her but it's not like this album and the Ramones had the same sound. Not even close. This is an excellent debut album.

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Mon May 02 2022
4

It’s nice to hear that most of the female and some of the male voices of the New Wave and post-punk movement took their vocal inflections from Patti Smith. Iconic.

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Sat May 07 2022
4

The Punk Godmother, I got Gloria on a 12" with Hey Joe on the other side. She was electric then and when she teamed up with the Boss to write Because The Night...Wow. Horses is a great album and My Favourite track is her interpretation of Van Morrisons "Gloria: In Excelsis Deo" Rightly On the list

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Tue May 10 2022
4

Patti Smith je legenda, također i ovaj album koji je u potpunosti producirao John Cale (The Velvet Underground). Dao bi 8,5-9/10.

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Sat May 14 2022
4

Really liked this, you can see why she's been so influential. Like a lot of these artists on 1001, the best stuff is the early stuff before they disappear up their own arses.

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Sat May 21 2022
4

Good album, would give it another listen. Found the music to be interesting

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Sat Jun 04 2022
4

Pretty good. I reckon PJ Harvey is a fan!

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Sat Jun 04 2022
4

Well that's interesting. Previously I've never enjoyed Patti Smith's work, but this time round I like it enough to add to my library. I might even like this a lot now.

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Sun Jun 12 2022
4

Альбом драйвовый и необычный. Круто звучит.

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Fri Jul 01 2022
4

One of the most influential albums in history. Patti Smith is a poet, and although there's not much relation to the punk sound, her music represents the spirit of everything punk stands for. Immediately in the opening "Gloria", we get one of the strangest covers in history. Starts off with a poem with some truly iconic lines and use of pathos in her word choice. Jesus did not die for her sins: straight away we see how free spirited and expressive she wishes to be. There are references to her androgynous image by the ambiguity of the subject. And of course the only actual part of the song they cover is the "GLORIA" chorus. One of the most influential songs in punk for sure, be whoever you want, express yourself however you want, and fuck society's standards. "Redondo Beach" is a bit of a strange one. A favorite if only because reggae sounds cool. But it's reggae a couple years before Bob Marley made it mainstream, so seeing a reggae song here is out of left field. Ska and punk have a strong relation, and I guess this is where it started. But besides that, reggae music sounds happy, yet this song is about a girl drowing at the beach. "You'll never return to my arms cause you are gone gone" jfc "Birdland" is a disturbing 10-minute poem expressed by a piano, distortion, and her distraught voice, based on Steve Reich's Book of Dreams. "Free Money" starts off soft but immediately becomes the hardest song on the album, displaying her ability to swap between loud and expressive (very punk-like) and melodic and controlled. "Kimberly" is probably my favorite song, a very early example of New Wave with the groovy bassline and uplifting organ. "Break it Up" has Tom Verlaine on the guitar, which is why it sounds like something from Marquee Moon. By far the most chaotic track. John Cale worked in the production, and apparently he wanted strings. I agree with the decision not to, I can't imagine this to be a Paris 1919 copycat. "Land" is a 10-medley that serves as an ode to early rock n roll. I personally think this is the best song in her discography, excellent work on Cale's part between the use of two track vocals and the instruments coming in and out, having a strong garage style. I also enjoyed the solemn nature of the closer "Elegie" and the intense wild nature of the bonus cover "My Generation". Horses embraces itself in its minimalistic instruments, but I consider that to be its greatest weakness. The chord progressions and simple, which ties well with the punk diy model and puts emphasis on Patti's vocals and lyrics, and there's nothing wrong with that, but I wish the simple instrumental they did choose could be more interesting. This is more problematic in the first half. Otherwise, her lyric writing skills rival that of Dylan.

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Sat Jul 09 2022
4

Better each listen. Great mix of genres.

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Mon Jul 11 2022
4

Definitely some interesting and important ideas that are communicated concisely and intelligently but the musical stylings didn’t totally do it for me

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Thu Jul 21 2022
4

Punk's poet laureate, with her savage voice.

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Sat Jul 23 2022
4

I love Patti smith

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Mon Jul 25 2022
4

The way that Patti sings "Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine" is the best opening line ever. Patti is cool but her music is a tad overrated.

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Tue Jul 26 2022
4

Enjoyable, kinda mellow punk, the live version of my generation can get in the sea but overall enjoyed

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Fri Sep 02 2022
4

discazooo also el primero que me toca de una mujer así que perdón si soy biased pero puntitos extra por eso. 8/10

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Fri Sep 02 2022
4

Great Album, My first ever 12" single was "Gloria in Excellsis Deo" CW "My Generation" what a great version which I think at least equals Van's original with "Them" and The "Who" version I am sure Townsend was pleased when he heard this revamp. Love it to bits. Absolutely right for this list my favourites the aforementioned "Gloria" "Redondo Beach" and "Break it up"

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Sat Sep 03 2022
4

Klassík. Snilldar plata.

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Wed Sep 14 2022
4

she slayed on this one

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Fri Sep 16 2022
4

Really enjoyed this. a high 3 or low 4. Probably wouldn't be a 4 usually but feeling generous.

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Fri Sep 16 2022
4

I liked the song Gloria - definitely in the rock category

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Sun Sep 18 2022
4

Nice early Saturday morning album to accompany a cup of coffee and the latest awful headlines from the frontlines of neo-liberal collapse. A pleasant soundtrack to observing the early stages of an unfolding apocalypse from a relatively safe distance. Punk poetics.

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Mon Sep 19 2022
4

quite liked this album, favourite track: Kimberly

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Mon Sep 19 2022
4

Big fan of all of that

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Tue Sep 20 2022
4

It's great how most of the tracks start quiet and build up, plus there's plenty of punk attitude in the vocals. A decent album that probably needs a few listens to be truly appreciated.

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Tue Sep 20 2022
4

I can see a lot of modern acts that have been influenced by Patti Smith. With her powerful rock/punk to the punchiness of her spoken word, she is definitely a seminal artist in the punk rock scene, particularly in New York - even beating The Ramones on this release by 5 months. Patti's style has never gone out of fashion, and has set the tone for smart, unbending female rockers of generations since, and undoubtedly will into the future. Best: Gloria: In Excelsis Deo Worst: Elegie

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Sat Oct 01 2022
4

Gotta give it up for Patti

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Sun Oct 02 2022
4

Patti is so damn cool.

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Wed Oct 05 2022
4

Genius version of Gloria. Indeed this is all good and also interesting. Overall I enjoyed it more than I expected too, especially the first and last songs. 3.5 rounding up for the perfection of the album cover art.

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