God, where do you start with The Smiths? I guess it’s to admit that they were one of the few bands that Eyman sent my way, rather than vice versa: I remember going over to his house when he still lived in Blacktown and seeing all the 12” singles he had of them, those iconic covers, and listening to them but not getting the appeal. He smiled and said wait, you’ll see, and eventually I did.
It was This Charming Man that won me over, punctured bicycle and all, which would become a recurring theme for us (on Richmond Road, in Northern France, all over), and from then on I was gone. And then there’s that guitar throb of an opener to How Soon Is Now. And Eyman playing I Know It’s Over, over and over, repeating oh mother I can feel the soil falling over my head even when the song stopped. Or Please Please Please, so pleasing. Or realising that Morrissey was actually funny when I listened to Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now. Or the desperation, so teenaged, of Ask. Or the mental soundscape of Panic, or the self-laceration of Bigmouth Strikes Again.
But no, it had to be this: the fumbling of the darkened underpass, the almost funny to die by your side, the beauty of the double decker bus. Just gorgeous. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4BsbNB-0pA