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Elliot Smith

4.8 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 1 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Redeye / Kill Rock Stars
  • ASIN: B00000373G
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #34,157 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Needle In The Hay
2. Christian Brothers
3. Clementine
4. Southern Belle
5. Single File
6. Coming Up Roses
7. Satellite
8. Alphabet Town
9. St. Ides Heaven
10. Good To Go
11. The White Lady Loves You More
12. The Biggest Lie

Product Description


Recorded mildly better than his debut (Roman Candle on Cavity Search), the self-titled second solo album is one of the most understated and incredible albums to emerge from the indie-rock scene in the 1990s. With his nimble picking fingers behind him, Smith writes sad, little songs about drugs and romantic codependence that border on the obsessed. "Needle in the Hay" and "The White Lady Loves You More" are exemplary tunes that fuse the Beatles' pop sense with Neil Young's sense of doom. Lying in his own burned out basement, Smith can rough up the gentlest love song with a few salty words of choice. --Rob O'Connor

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
this album is consistently beautiful in its harmonic woodwork and expressed sighs for the sweaty fingers which form the acoustic architecture. it is not art deco, it is not gothic, but merely utilitarian wordworking with nooks and crannies and knotholes, plenty of places where humanity is the closest to the curve of the wood.
i can never decide if this album or "roman candle" is my favorite or most preferred album by elliott smith. however, this album features the most delightful and listenable tracks with much less sentimentality and a greater feel of woodburn, disgust, and ambivalence. even still, i cannot ignore my pleasure for the finely woven tracking of "roman candle" which flows from base to wick in a flicker of light. the most exceptional tracks upon this album are likely "coming up roses" with a dysfunctional chord pattern which poses as beautiful, "single file" courtesies and curtseys to neil gust (heatmiser, no.2), "st. ide's heaven" with such heavenly harmonies, and the harmonica and harmonics of "alphabet town."
this album screams the works of a blue collar worker, a steel mill, with a few references to the historical mass suicides from atop buildings in the great depression. it is top notch, with all the notched woodworking and word-workings, one man can muster.
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By A Customer on Feb. 25 2003
Format: Audio CD
It's PINK MOON with a needle in it's arm. Or imagine the whispery sordiness of "Sunday Morning" Lou Reed, only all on a lonely acoustic guitar. It even touches on the maudlin side of BIG STAR. And all without coming across as derivative. If you're a fan of any of the aformentioned, ELLIOTT SMITH is the perfect fix.
After hearing all his other albums, "Needle in the Hay" remains Smith at his haunting best. Lines like, "drink yourself into slo-mo/ made an angel in the snow" should make "Clementine" an all time favorite(as well as bring a smile to your kiss-less lips). Drug references abound & "The White Lady Loves You More" has to be one of the most heartbreaking songs about chemical dependency I've hever heard. "The Biggest Lie" is enough to make you play the whole thing over again. While not my first introduction to Elliott Smith, this one certainly left me with a lasting impression. Melancholy to say the least, but not enough to make you want to hang yourself in a garrett. A tourniquet for the soul, so to speak.
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Format: Audio CD
While Amazon[.com]'s reviews don't do the following statment justice, the self-titled "Elliott Smith" rarely gets the praise its successor "Either/Or" does. Strange, considering many of the followers of Mr. Smith prefer the dark and unique tone of Elliott, best embodied on this sophomore, (NOT SOPHOMORIC), solo release. A brilliant album, this record has what is unquestioningly the best in fingerpicking the accoustic-Elliott has to offer. Songs like "Southern Belle" and "Christian Brothers" are Elliott's finest in arangement, instrumentation and melody as Elliott finger-picks his way to musical ingeniousness. Intense, accoustic tracks and driving, serious lyrics are the halmark of this brilliant LP that often overshadow the amazing if tangential melodies it has to offer. Fans of other Elliott records of course must indulge in the record, and Elliott beginners won't fail if they start here.
Among Elliott's first 3 records, which fall largely under the "accoustic" label", here is the best one. Unfortunately, its lack of stand-out song and overall genius has relegated it to its weakest of Elliott LP's designation, (among "fans"). Believe not what you hear: those opinions stem from a well-guided but confused populous. Buy and enjoy "Elliott Smith."
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Format: Audio CD
I think this man is the greatest American songwriter of the past ten years.. My introduction to him was less than stellar - the first album I heard of his was Figure 8, which I think is the weakest that I have heard. Then I found XO, which was became one of my favorites, and recently I found the LP version of this album ...But to be honest, now that I now how good it is, ...
And now that I've listened to it a few times, I must say that I think its the best music I've heard of his.. It's one of those albums that you should enjoy immediately, and probably for a long while (I've only had it for a few days, so I don't want to be presumptious). Each song is very well-crafted.. I love LPs for many reasons, but one reason is that it forces you to be patient with music.. You can't as easily move to the next song as you can with a CD player. This music deserves more than your typical video-game junkie short-attention span type listener. Sit down -- alone or with a loved one -- and LISTEN to this music unfold.. His guitar parts are simple and perfect, his voice sweet, pure, and melelcholy. His lyrics are probably great as well, although to be honest, I don't really care that much.. The more purely musical elements stand up on their own, and are wonderful with or without the aid of a good text.
I think this music should make you remember that life is meaningful.. that's about the best thing I can say about any music.
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Format: Audio CD
First off i'd like to say that i agree w/ the other "old school" elliot fans about missing the "lo-fi" sound (especially on this & his 1st album) which has literally turned elliot into a cult figure. I'd also like to comment on how many people misconstrue his songs as "sappy" or "sad". What many people do not understand about elliot is that his exestentialist beliefs reflect heavily upon his music. Which is why many of his songs have sort of a "nonchalant" or "casual" mood to them. After all, his next album "Either/Or" is the name of a Kierkagard book. On the other hand elliots songs most definitely evoke all types of emotions. Some songs will bring about a lofty, melancholy, while other songs will have you swaying your head side to side w/ a big smile on your face, humming the very tuneful notes of his graceful songs. This is most assuredly because of the sheer strength of his song writing abilities. I have a very difficult time choosing between this & his first album as far as favorites go. One plus about this album is that it has more songs then his 1st outing. I love the sparse, yet raw sound of these early recordings which were of course recorded in various friends basements. There are just soo many amazing songs on here that i have a difficult time picking out favorites. Every song on here just radiates w/ such purity & honesty (which i believe is the main reason) why almost any1 can relate to these songs. It doesnt matter if i play this album for my mother, the old retired fella that i work with, or some young kid who's main staple of music is rap... They all can relate to & appreciate songs like these.Which is an extremely rare trait amoung song writing now a days.Read more ›
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