The Smiths are a band worshiped across the globe by legions of black clad angsty teenage misfits. And despised by everyone else. Or at least that's what the Bony M lot will tell you. Miserableist, hypersensitive, whiny and self- absorbed. Boney M stands for empowerment and fun. That's what they'll say.
But it's the other way around. Most of the singers in Boney M wern't even allowed to sing on record. It was all controlled by their evil, manipulative manager - Frank Farian. Their was nothing carefree about the music of Boney M, it was all carefully controlled.
I have to admit, it's easy to be put off by the public persona of Morrisey, but you really shouldn't let it. Peer just a little further and you'll hear some of the most wonderful songwriting in British pop history, nay, the world. And if you listen properly, it's very witty funny and very funny.......and it liberated pop music.
A vote for the Smiths is a vote for freedom. A vote for Boney M is a vote for Simon Cowell and X Factor.
Look at this grimming personification of evil. That's what you'll be supporting if you vote for manufactured Boney M.
It's worth going back to the early 1980's to see how the Smiths saved proper pop music. Punk was becoming post punk (which means U2) and the charts were dominated by the new romantics. That's right, most music was without any soul, and it was performed (mimed) by impossibly pretty people with very bad dress sense. And they sang in fake American accents. Real music was dead on it's feet.
Bands like this lot.
And him. Even David Bowie was falling from grace with a series of really bad populist albums.
Then came the Smiths. It's no exaggeration to say they are the most original band in British history. I include the Beatles and the Stones in that - they sang in styles nicked from America, and were heavily influenced by Motown etc. The Smiths were a one off. Morrisey didn't sing in any fake accents, he sang as himself. And Johnny Marr......easily the best guitarist of a generation. No one sounded like him before, no one did after.
The Smiths were anti-fashion, anti fake. Unlike Boney M who mimed, who didn't sing on their records, who couldn't play to save their lives, the Smiths were the real deal. The music was the epitome of melodic simplicity. On one hand you had the guitar arpeggios of Johnny Marr, on the other you had the the dark crooning of Morrisey, along with the lyrical dexterity to rival even someone like Dylan.
Bored with the synthesizer pap of the time, The Smiths music was about ordinariness. From the name to the songs themselves. The bravery of ordinary people plodding through their everyday lives is in every record. And as for playing live? No one could touch them.
But they saved us from the worst kind of cynical, synthsesized rubbish and liberated real music again. And it was all totally orginal. Every generation loves its own music and thinks it sounds like nothing that went before it. But the Arctic Monkeys nicked the best bits from The Undertones, Kaiser Chiefs sound like the Jam and every George Clinton has been sampled by just about every rap artist out there. The Smiths was a one off. And they came at a time when they were most sorely needed.
I won't go through every record, there's no need. It's enough to know that a vote for Boney M is a vote for safe, manufactured pop. It's a vote for Stock Aitken and Waterman producing Kylie, it's a vote for The Kaiser Chiefs shamelessly ripping off the Jam. It's a vote every Simon Cowell svengali there has ever been. A vote for the Smiths is a vote for original ideas. You know what to do. Vote here.