Ten acts that clearly worship the Smiths
Few bands in history have cast a longer shadow than the Smiths. They've inspired countless imitators and spiritual successors since calling it quits in 1987. While skinny indie kids moaning about the hardships of life are a dime a dozen, tracking down the successful artists influenced by Morrissey and Marr's legacy takes a bit more effort. You're welcome.
- Johnny Marr creating the sound for "How Soon is Now?" without effects
- The Smiths '80s radio takeover: What really happened according to police reports
- More than a fascinating piece of Smithsology, the '80s radio takeover is a story of redemption
In many ways, Blur led the cavalcade of bands that rode the wake of the Smiths' departure in the early '90s. Their derisive take on modern life in London drew directly from Morrissey's catalogue of misguided characters. Any one of the lost souls inhabiting 1995's The Great Escape could have felt at home in a Smiths song, and "Charmless Man" made several clear references: The title is a parody of "This Charming Man," the lyrics describe a similar encounter with a posh gentleman of questionable intent and the line, "I think he'd like to have been Ronnie Kray" alludes to Morrissey's obsession with well-dressed bisexual schizophrenic gangsters. With a dating pool that small to choose from, is it any wonder the Mozzer went celibate?
Overshadowed by the Smiths' success during the '80s, Pulp finally found their audience in the '90s, taking a distinct cue from the Smiths' school of sarcastic social realism. Frontman Jarvis Cocker has stated publicly that he was jealous of Morrissey for many years, and also that he now feels bad about it. When Pulp wrote the hit "Common People" -- a tale of doomed love attempting to cross the boundaries of economic class -- the band was channeling Morrissey to no small degree. The juxtaposition of wealth and privilege with emotional and financial destitution was a common thread running through the Smiths' records. However, the real question is: What does it feel like to channel Morrissey? Well, it feels a bit sticky. There's no clever joke there. That's just how it feels.