December 5th, 2006

The Smith's "Stretch Out And Wait"

The Smith's "Stretch Out And Wait"

It is almost impossible for me to choose just one Smith's song to write about. They have been my favorite band since the end of my freshman year of college, and I honestly believe that they will be my favorite band for as long as I can imagine. Over my lifetime I have had several "favorite" bands. Van Halen, Pink Floyd, R.E.M., The Dave Matthews Band... at one point I could truly say each of these was a favorite, but they were all bands I grew out of after a while. Sure, I still love a lot of their music, but to call any of them a favorite now would be a misstatement. I connected very quickly with The Smiths, and have continued to do so throughout my adult life. The combination of their genuine poppy bounce and full on curl in a ball and rock yourself to sleep in the corner misery appeals to me in ways that few other artists can. Only Elliott Smith has come close to speaking to me in the ways that The Smith's music does, but he is the topic of a whole separate section unto himself.

There are hundreds of songs I could have chosen as my first Smiths post. Songs that through meaning, association, and sheer brilliance have taken up a very personal tie with me. Songs that almost anyone could recognize by title alone. But I have chosen a song that is not as frequently celebrated as "William, It Was Really Nothing" or "Girlfriend In A Coma" or "Cemetery Gates". It is a track that, from a band notorious for recycling songs on several albums, only appears on one... and it isn't even a "proper" album (Louder Than Bombs is a compilation). Yet for all it's being overshadowed, "Stretch Out And Wait" contains some of Morrissey's sweetest and most visual lyrics, and a tender genuineness that is hard not to fall in love with. It's instruments are almost symphonic, creating a soft bed for Moz's familiar croon. Paired with "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want" and "Asleep", both of which are also found on the final side of Louder Than Bombs, the Smiths have created the perfect trilogy of alternative lullabies.

I guarantee you will hear a lot more Smiths from me. But I figure that this is as good a starting place as any other.

Be sure to check out what Glenn, Rachael, Niveous, Andy, and Heuristics Inc chose for today.