posted by davidt on Friday May 24 2002, @09:00AM
Thanks to everyone who sent in this news item. Ruffian was the first:

A Fresh 'Opinion' From The Smiths - (22-05-2002-12-55)
A brand new ‘lost’ song by THE SMITHS has been unearthed, coinciding with the band topping the poll of NME’s most influential bands of all time in our recent 50th anniversary issue.

The Morrissey/Marr composition ‘A Matter Of Opinion’ was discovered during research for a new book analysing the career of the legendary Manchester quartet.

Author Simon Goddard, who also writes for NME's sister magazine Uncut, was searching through the tape archives of Smiths drummer Mike Joyce when he made his discovery.

He told NME.COM: "As part of my research I was the first journalist ever to be granted access to drummer Mike Joyce’s personal tape archive of rehearsals, soundchecks and outtakes. It was like a Smiths 'Ark of the Covenant' - lost instrumentals, some very exciting alternate versions but easily the most mindblowing was the discovery of a never-before-mentioned Morrissey/Marr song from 1982 called 'A Matter Of Opinion'".

For more, see this week's NME, which is out now.
Additionally, Marilyn sends the link to the Yahoo! headline from Ananova: Smiths biographer uncovers new track. Excerpt:

Author Simon Goddard told NME he'd found enough rare material amongst Joyce's tapes to make up a Beatles Anthology-style box set...

...easily the most mind-blowing was the discovery of a never-before-mentioned Morrissey/Marr song from 1982 called A Matter Of Opinion.

"Musically, it's very much in the same R 'n' B vein as What Difference Does It Make? while the lyrics are typical Morrissey and quite cynical."

It's not yet known whether the track will be released.
Update: 05/25 00:48 GMT: An anonymous person adds details from the print NME:
...while the lyrics are typical Morrissey and quite cynical. The opening line is - "Sit by the fire with your books and pretend that you're active"

But they never played it live and there's just the one copy on a rehearsal tape. It's been kept quiet for nearly 20 years so from a fan's perspective this is sensational news."

...Simon Goddard's The Smiths - Songs That Saved Your Life will be published in November by Reynolds & Hearn
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