The Smyths are a Smiths cover band and tonight they presented two glorious sets of Smiths songs. The first set was the 1984 album Hatful of Hollow played in full but the order changed for artistic purposes and the second set and encore was chock full of Smiths hits. The Smyths have been covering the Smiths since 2003. I have seen many cover bands in my time and I believe that the Smyths is one of the best I have seen. Graham Sampson has the “Morrissey” role and you could not find anyone else who has a closer voice to Moz. The rest of the band perfectly recreate the sound of the Smiths.
I was fortunate enough to see the Smyths at the Glastonbury Festival in the UK and for me, it was an uplifting experience to be able to sing these songs along with a huge tent full of fellow Smiths fans. I felt I was part of a global music community. Tonight was no different and there were plenty of singalongs tonight. Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want and How Soon is Now which ended the first set really had the crowd in fine vocal form. Both of these absolutely brilliant songs were both released as B-Sides back in the day which shows how much excellent material the Smiths had at the time. There were also many die-hards at the front that were singing every word of every song. The crowd was a mix of young and old and the young ones had either found the Smiths on their own or were the children of some very cool parents.
Leader singer Graham recreates both Morrissey’s normal singing voice and falsetto so wonderfully well. He is able to express the melancholy, angst, sorrow, and cheekiness of Morrissey’s voice and lyrics. I would love to see the Smyths do a show which covers Morrissey’s solo period as he himself has long abandoned some of his early hits.
The first set came to a close and after a short break, we were treated to some huge Smiths songs from later in their career. Shoplifters of the World Unite and Ask were huge crowd-pleasers and I could barely hear Graham during There Is a Light That Never Goes Out due to everyone singing. The Smiths mean a lot to me and their music and lyrics make up the soundtrack of my life for the last thirty six years and to have the Smyths recreate the sound in such a passionate way is incredible. The show ended with an absolute kick-ass version of The Queen is Dead Let’s hope they come back again soon.
Live Review By Richard De Pizzol