and the best smiths song of all time is…


Your votes have been counted. After beginning with 32 Smiths classics, the championship came down to the top 2 seeds: “How Soon Is Now?” and “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out.” And in a somewhat shocking landslide, the underdog lovesick ballad defeated perhaps the most identifiable “new wave” song of the 80’s.

Perhaps “How Soon Is Now?” suffered from being overplayed, but there’s no question that “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out” has been unscientifically proven to be the greatest Smiths song of all time. So let’s allow it a moment of glory…  a victory lap if you will. We’ll start with a fine cover released earlier this year by the Dum Dum Girls:

A more classic cover — at least in my book — is this one by the “American Smiths,” The Ocean Blue:

We’ll wrap up the covers with a lovely live version from Marr disciple Noel Gallagher:

For an idea of how much this song touches people, check out this live performance by Morrissey from a 2004 Manchester festival:

Further back in time, here’s a Smiths TV appearance from ’86. Completely fantastic in every way:

And finally, here’s a (bootleg, shhhhh) download from the Unreleased Demos & Outtakes vinyl that appeared around this time last year. Recorded in September of ’85, the title should be pretty self explanatory:

The Smiths – “There Is A Light That Never Goes Out (take 1)”

Hope you enjoyed this little diversion. Maybe we’ll do it again down the road for the likes of The Cure and New Order. Cheers to “There Is A Light…”!

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