Why weren't these classic songs released as singles?

22 November 2020, 19:00

Pixies, Smiths, Nirvana, Stone Roses and The Rolling Stones
Pixies, Smiths, Nirvana, Stone Roses and The Rolling Stones. Picture: Frans Schellekens/Kerstin Rodgers/RB/Joe Dilworth/Photoshot/Leon Morris/Michel Linssen/Redferns/Getty Images

Sometimes genius is there lurking in the grooves of your favourite LP... Here’s a list of the best songs that never had a single release….

  1. The Smiths - Cemetry Gates

    One of the best songs to be included on the classic 1986 album The Queen Is Dead, this tragi-comic tale of Morrissey’s youthful pastime of hanging around cemeteries was never released as a single.

  2. The Stone Roses - This Is The One

    A huge track from the Roses’ debut album, and the walk-on music for Manchester United. Strictly an album track, however.

  3. David Bowie - Oh! You Pretty Things

    A highlight of Bowie’s career-defining 1971 album Hunky Dory, former Herman’s Hermits singer Peter Noone had already scored a hit with the song in the summer of 1971, so Bowie didn’t try and compete.

  4. New Order - Your Silent Face

    Always a live highlight, this elegant Kraftwerk-influenced ballad kicks off side two of the Manchester band’s second album, Power, Corruption And Lies.

  5. Nirvana - About A Girl

    This classic Kurt Cobain song was included on the band’s debut album Bleach in 1989, but became more famous following its inclusion in the MTV Unplugged special and album.

  6. Led Zeppelin - Stairway To Heaven

    Led Zep were so famous in the 1970s that they didn’t need to release singles, so their most fanous song was an album-only delight.

  7. The Rolling Stones - Gimme Shelter

    This massive tune from the Stones opened their brilliant Let It Bleed album, but never made it as a single in the UK in the 60s.

  8. Pixies - Where Is My Mind

    Made famous by its inclusion in the film Fight Club, this indie classic kicked off Side 2 of the Boston band’s 1988 album Surfer Rosa.

  9. The Beatles - Here Comes The Sun

    The Fabs issued a double A-side from the Abbey Road album - Come Together and Something - but George Harrison’s beautiful song was strictly for LP lovers.


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