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The Smiths – I Stole And Then I Lied (Godfather Records GR460)

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I Stole And Then I Lied (Godfather Records GR460)

De Meervaart, Amsterdam, The Netherlands – April 21st, 1984

(60:10):  Hand In Glove, Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now, Girl Afraid, This Charming Man, Barbarism Begins At Home, This Night Has Opened My Eyes, Miserable Lie, Still Ill, I Don’t Owe You Anything, What Difference Does It Make, Handsome Devil, You’ve Got Everything Now, These Things Take Time.  Bonus Tracks: Anson Rooms, Bristol University, United Kingdom, February 24, 1984:  This Charming Man, Pretty Girls Make Graves, Reel Around The Fountain

I Stole And Then I Lied is the latest silver pressing of one of the most common Smiths tapes.  This concert was organized and promoted by the Dutch music magazine Vinyl’s fifth anniversary.  It was The Smith’s first concert in a non-English speaking country.  The complete concert was recorded and various subsets were broadcast on KRO radio at different times. One reported broadcast from 1987 or 1988 (apparently the second broadcast) featured the following set: “Girl Afraid,” “This Charming Man,” “Barbarism Begins At Home,” “This Night Has Opened My Eyes,” “Still Ill,” “What Difference Does It Make?” “Handsome Devil,” and “These Things Take Time.”

Another broadcast a few years later featured “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now,” “Barbarism Begins At Home,” “Miserable Lie,” “I Don’t Owe You Anything,” “what Difference Does It Make?” “Handsome Devil,” and “You’ve Got Everything Now.” 

One of the earlier releases on LP is Miserable Lies which has excellent sound but lacks the first two tracks and “You’ve Got Everything Now.”  Another LP title is Boyfriend In A Comawhich has a few tracks plus the Troy Tate outtakes and other various live material.

Handsome Devils and its reissue in a better sleeve Live In Derby Dec 7th 1983 both sound very good, but they only feature the seven tracks from the “third” broadcast.  (These two are more interesting for the concert in Derby on December 6th, 1983.)  Live At Amsterdam Meervaart 1984is a 3″ cd which came with the Italian lyrics book “The Smiths 1982-1987″ released by Stampa Alternativa, features only four songs from this show: “This Charming Man,” “Miserable Lie,” “Still Ill,” and “What Difference Does It Make?”

Godfather use the February 2009 broadcast from Dutch Radio 2 in excellent quality.  It features the complete show in correct sequence.

Because this is their first show before a non-English speaking audience Morrissey sounds rather reserved at first but warms up as the show progresses.  “Miserable Lie,” “I Don’t Owe You Anything” and “These Things Take Time” were scarcely performed at this time but make an appearance in this show.  The latter two would be dropped forever soon after this show. 

“Hand In Glove” opens the show as it did on the recent UK tour but the normal introduction was brought back.  Afterwards Morrissey introduces the next song, saying:  “Thank you, this song is called ‘Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now‘.”  This live performance is much closer to the studio version since it had just been recorded. 

“Girl Afraid”, which was next on the setlist and planned to be released as the latter single’s b-side, had also just been recorded in the 4-week break between the end of the recent UK tour and this concert. So not only was “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” closer to its definitive version, but so was “Girl Afraid”. In the instrumental bridge in the middle of the song, Morrissey hummed “Mmmmm that mistake again”, as he does on the studio version. He had never done this before. “This Charming Man” was introduced as being “…a song about a bicycle.” Before going into “Barbarism Begins At Home” Morrissey told the audience “Coincidentally, it’s a great privilege to be here… so…”

Before introducing “Miserable Lie” Morrissey enquired “Can anybody here speak English?… So?” The following planned number was “Still Ill” and it was simply introduced with a shout of its title. Then the next one was introduced with the line “This song is called ‘I Don’t Owe You Anything’…” When the band returned to the stage for the first encore Morrissey shouted “Handsome Devil”! before the band launched into the song. When the band returned to the stage for the second encore, Morrissey’s final words to the audience were “Thank you, we didn’t expect this, thank you…”  Overall I Stole And Then I Lied is an excellent Smiths release worth having. 

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The Smiths - I Stole And Then I Lied (Godfather Records GR460), 3.1 out of 5 based on 8 ratings

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