I have been on a downloading splurge and feel much better for it, in my net lies even more Smiths, Tom Waits, Belle & Sebastian, The Cure and of course Morrissey. Not many modern bands here, though I did come across on the blogs a band called L'Aristocrats. Another London band who are one of these outfits that I like to coo over, all happy, all poppy and all daisies. The vocalist sounds muffled in a good way, like Ian Curtis. But whilst the great "let them use you for their own ends", the vocalist would much rather "get mine", whatever that means. Needless to say I've woken up the last two times with the chorus spiralling around in my head, much to the detriment of my treasured REM.

Anyway getting back to old times, and The Smiths, oh The Smiths, it's entirely pointless me trying to even describe their sound, everyone knows [secretly] it's amazing amazing amazingness. So all I'll say is I'm currently repeating "Unhappy Birthday", though I have a funny feeling it's been incorrectly labelled and it's actually Morrissey, tell me so.

Unhappy Birthday - Morrissey/The Smiths

Leading on from 1987, Morrissey, who for reasons not best known to me, though I can guess it might be something to do with his perceived arrogance and his residence in Rome and his alleged racism, though unfortunately I've got my red-tinted glasses on, so these things are of little consequence to me. But "Last of the Famous International Playboys", while to his critics may seem like another blatant posturing act on his part, is for me, a surprisingly lovely, upbeat song. As far as I'm concerned, I AM the last of the famous international playboys and so will you once this infectious charm is cast on you with it's broad chords and rising riffs.

Last of the Famous International Playboys - Morrissey

Belle & Sebastian, I remember from my pathetic follies in the early teenage years, I say so very sagely, were a band one boy in my class liked. And for that we ripped him mercilessly and I don't and now can't see why, it was just something you did. Well now I shall try and atone for my sins and say that "Wrapped up in Books" with it's brilliant bass and supremely luscious lyrics has really put a smile on my face. No, it actually has, nothing else does it seems. So I'm sure there are more joys to be had from the Glasgow outfit, but if you're one of the slow ones like me, then please do listen, it'll be worth it.

Wrapped up in Books - Belle & Sebastian

I recently discovered the joys of last.fm, when I say recently I mean all of yesterday, and when last.fm had finished scrobbling [counting up all the bands I have ever listened to] my itunes, it turns out I am the no.4 in the world of last.fm for listening to The Smiths with 1,001 plays and the other three are nut jobs who clearly cheat: no-one can listen to The Smiths 3,874 in one week I'm pretty sure that's not enough time so therefore I pronounce myself the no.1 listener of The Smiths on last.fm. Sorry for the arrogant statement, but I just had to say it.

Oh for the more modern lovers, I really like this Maccabees b-side, "The Picnic Song", I had previously ignored and listened to "Latchmere" instead, but 'ooo-de-la-ley, ooo-de-la-ley sitting in a tree' and 'dibble-dabble in the babbling brook' have left swooning hook, line and sinker.

The Picnic Song - The Maccabees

oo de-la-ley indeed.