[A] meticulous biography…This exhaustive, well-researched account brings fresh detail and thought to the party.
The Sunday Times
A finely judged re-telling of a remarkable tale with valuable first-hand accounts of the band’s American adventures, their rapid development into a wonderful live act, plus insights into the spiralling pressures and frictions that faced the individual band members.
An exhaustive labour of love that was three years in the writing but which will be lapped up by fans of the band...written with a real sense of love and affection for the group who, though they were only together for a mere five years, tilted the world on its axis to a degree not seen since the heyday of the Beatles and the Stones…Fletcher is excellent when it comes to widening the view to include the cultural and historical factors behind the band's emergence and the city from which they came.
The story of the Smiths told on the basis of interviews with just about every surviving participant in the Smiths' story. As the story winds on, a chain of no-shows, fits of pique and self-sabotage ... reaches its denouement with an episode from April 1987, just prior to the band's formal break-up. Fletcher is the first writer to have got the full story. Such material highlights the extent to which Fletcher has done his research.
Tony Fletcher’s account is a highly enjoyable way of revisiting [the] story. Crucially, he avoids areas well-served by other Smiths tomes and brings sufficient new material to reward even well-read fans…It’s a tale that’s been told before, but in his biography of the Manchester four-piece Tony Fletcher reveals new details and brings new depths to the story of Morrissey, Marr, Rourke, Joyce and the birth of the band.
A thorough and detailed investigation.
There [are] fascinating passages about the bands producers: Troy Tate, John Porter, Stephen Street. Pages on the members’ childhood add meaningful context, and there are some thrilling glimpses of the Smiths on tour.
The story itself is riveting and Fletcher tells it lucidly and fairly. The drive to continue reading is provided by Marr’s no-nonsense spirit and by Morrissey’s eminently quotable lyrics and interviews.
November 1, 2013
September 18, 2012
September 6, 2012