Smiler with Knife

Album: World Peace Is None of Your Business (2014)

Songfacts®:

  • This mostly acoustic tune finds Morrissey singing of a deeply wounded, tortured guy begging some former lover to "press the blade against my skin." Producer Joe Chiccarelli recalled to Radio.com: "We used an acoustic piano that's been distorted, and there's also some backwards piano fills that have been treated through a guitar amp. So, some of the sounds that sound like guitar on that song is actually piano."
  • The title phrase originates from Chaucer's The Knights Tale:

    "The smiler with the knife under the cloak
    The stable burning with the black smoke
    The treason and murder in the bed."

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