The Smithereens

Beauty and Sadness

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The Smithereens' debut EP, originally released in a tiny run on a small New York indie in 1983, sounds like a dry run for the far superior full-length debut, 1986's Especially for You. However, of the five songs on this EP, one is merely an instrumental remix of the title track, two are forgettable trifles (the rockabilly-inflected "Much Too Much" and "Some Other Guy," which isn't the British Invasion staple made famous by the Beatles and others), and only two hint at singer/songwriter Pat DiNizio's blossoming talent. The opening "Tracey's World" is a winsome little power pop nugget, but the real winner is "Beauty and Sadness," a dark-hued and lightly psychedelic stunner powered by Dennis Diken's "Ticket to Ride"-inspired drum hook and Jim Babjak's droning guitar. Unfortunately, none of these songs ever appeared on any future Smithereens releases; the EP was briefly reissued on CD by Capitol Records in 1992 with historical liner notes by Diken.

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