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Encyclopedia > The Very Best of The Smiths
The Very Best of The Smiths
Compilation album by The Smiths
Released June 4, 2001
Recorded England, 1983–1987
Genre Indie
Length ?? min ?? sec
Record label WEA
Producer Various (see main text)
Professional reviews
The Smiths Chronology
The Very Best of The Smiths
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The Very Best of The Smiths is a compilation album by The Smiths. It was released in June, 2001 by WEA in Europe. Its highest British chart position was #31; the album was not released in the United States.


About the album

After Singles (1995), the previous Smiths compilation album that WEA (now the Warner Music Group) had issued, went out of print in Europe, Australia and Taiwan, the record company decided to revamp the package slightly and release it under the name The Very Best of The Smiths. WEA scrambled the running order and added five tracks, and enticed the record buyers with the incentive of digital remastering.

The album was widely criticised by the British music press, who, after stopping to praise the actual music, went on to condemn what they saw as a moneygrabbing exercise. They were quickly joined by singer Morrissey and guitarist Johnny Marr, who distanced themselves from the album, stating they had had no input whatsoever. Both ridiculed the cover design and Marr additionally denounced the sound quality.

In the fine tradition of largely-but-not-quite-overlapping Smiths compilations, this album does contain two versions not available on album elsewhere: the single edits of "Ask" and "Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me" (Singles used the album versions).


The sleeve for The Very Best of The Smiths features Charles Hawtrey of Carry On fame.

Track listing

All songs written by Morrissey/Marr.

  1. Panic
  2. The Boy with the Thorn in His Side (album version)
  3. Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now
  4. Ask (single version)
  5. Bigmouth Strikes Again
  6. How Soon Is Now? (album version)
  7. This Charming Man
  8. What Difference Does It Make?
  9. William, It Was Really Nothing
  10. Some Girls Are Bigger Than Others
  11. Girlfriend in a Coma
  12. Hand in Glove (album version)
  13. There Is a Light That Never Goes Out
  14. Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want
  15. That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore (album version)
  16. I Know It's Over
  17. Sheila Take a Bow
  18. I Started Something I Couldn't Finish
  19. Still Ill
  20. Shakespeare's Sister
  21. Shoplifters of the World Unite
  22. Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me (single version)
  23. Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before

People involved

The band

Additional musicians

Technical staff

  • John Porter – producer (1, 3-4, 6-9, 14, 19), remixer (12)
  • The Smiths – producers (12, 15, 20)
  • Morrissey and Marr – producers (2, 5, 10, 13, 16)
  • Johnny Marr – producer (21)
  • Johnny Marr, Morrissey and Stephen Street – producers (11, 17-18, 22-23)
  • Steve Lillywhite – remixer (4)

  Results from FactBites:
The Smiths: Information from Answers.com (4792 words)
The Smiths were the definitive British indie rock band of the '80s, marking the end of synth-driven new wave and the beginning of the guitar rock that dominated English rock into the '90s.
The Smiths' rise to the upper reaches of the British charts was swift, and the passion of their fans, as well as the U.K. music press, indicated that the group had put an end to the synth-powered new wave that dominated Britain in the early '80s.
It debuted at number two in the U.K. A widely criticized, two-part The Best of the Smiths compilation was released in 1992; the praised Singles compilation was released in 1995.
  More results at FactBites »



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