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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Smiths, The - The World Won't Listen

Released : February 23, 1987
Recorded : 1984–1986
Genre : Alternative rock, Indie rock, Indie pop
Length : 59:26
Label : Rough Trade Records
Producer : Various

In 1987, Rough Trade released at least two collections of singles and B-sides by the Smiths. The U.S. audience saw the release of Louder Than Bombs, which collected 24 assorted tracks. U.K. fans were handed The World Won't Listen, with 16 tracks. Most ardent fans of the band obviously gobbled up both releases. The 12 shared tracks across the two albums are "Panic," "Ask," "London," "Shakespeare's Sister," "Shoplifters of the World Unite," "Asleep," "Unloveable," "Half a Person," "Stretch Out and Wait," "Oscillate Wildly," "You Just Haven't Earned It Yet, Baby," and "Rubber Ring." That means there are four tracks here that aren't included on Louder Than Bombs, and there are 12 tracks on Louder Than Bombs that aren't included here. Going into the merits of the tracks isn't necessary; there's not a clunker to be found in the Smiths's discography. The funny, annoying, and/or incredible thing about both the Smiths and Morrissey is that so many songs (singles or B-sides) make appearances on so many different albums. Any die-hard fan of the Smiths is going to want or need both albums, just to have a complete collection of releases (not songs). Even then, there's going to be much repetition across the actual full-length albums and best-of collections. If an album called "The Bombs Won't Listen" or "Louder Than the World" was to be released tomorrow, there'd be an audience for it; granted, it would be a smaller audience than in the heyday of the Smiths. Many people consider the Morrissey/Marr duo to be the last great songwriting team; any release by the Smiths is indispensable to this audience. A casual fan in the U.S. might due well to simply pick up Louder Than Bombs, since The World Won't Listen's additional tracks ("Bigmouth Strikes Again," "There Is a Light That Never Goes Out," "The Boy With the Thorn in His Side," and "That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore") are all found on the major, full-length releases of the band, thus paying for the price of the import might not be justified.

Tracks

1. Panic
2. Ask
3. London
4. Bigmouth Strikes Again
5. Shakespeare's Sister
6. There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
7. Shoplifters Of The World Unite
8. The Boy With The Thorn In His Side
9. Asleep
10.Unloveable
11.Half A Person
12.Stretch Out And Wait
13.That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore
14.Oscillate Wildly
15.You Just Haven't Earned It Yet, Baby
16.Rubber Ring


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1 comment:

Anklebiter said...

Love it. Thanks.