Elliott Smith
Roman Candle


5.0
classic

Review

by Jared W. Dillon USER (118 Reviews)
June 12th, 2005 | 372 replies | 20,809 views


Release Date: 1994 | Tracklist


2 of 2 thought this review was well written

Roman Candle
Elliott Smith


Elliott Smith is in my eyes the most important songwriter of the last decade. Every album in his discography is an essential own in my opinion. Roman Candle is no exception, being his first (solo) album itís a fantastic collection of heart-felt acoustic based lullabies. Elliottís falsetto voice and his haunting guitar lines create a one of kind musical experience that is very reminiscent of the late Nick Drake. After Roman Candle Elliott would go onto to receive international fame with his Academy Award-nominated song ďMiss Misery". Releasing such classic albums as ďEither/Or" and ďXO" Elliott was on the track to superstardom until his death in 2003. Circumstances surrounding his death are currently unknown but the popular opinion is suicide. Elliott Smithís last album ďFrom a Basement on A Hill" received extremely successful reviews and was a staple in many of 2004ís best album lists.

Roman Candle

The first track of the album is one of the strongest. Based around the great chorus line of ďI want to hurt him/I want to give him pain/Iím a Roman Candle/My head is full of flame" this song would later go on to reflect the feelings of Elliott during most of his life. The thoughts of pain, abuse, and redemption are all eloquently spoke through this very haunting acoustic driven song. The mild electric guitar solo adds a stronger lucidness to the song. One of Elliottís finest.

5/5

Condor Ave.


This is a depressing song about a girlfriend dying in a car crash. The story according to Elliott is that he had a huge fight with his girlfriend about something stupid and petty, and she drove away upset, crashed her car and died. The song has a very simple feel but the message behind it ďenjoy it while you can" translates through so well. This is another great track and one of the most emotional Iíve heard.

5/5

No Name # 1


A great mix of drums and acoustic guitar makes this song a standout in the 4 No Names. This is a song written about the uncomfortable feelings of talking to a girl. Elliott tells the girl ďYou remind me of someoneís daughter" and is turned away. This is his response to that event in his life. The drums really add a great feel to this song and give it a good direction.

5/5

No Name # 2


This is one of the songs were Elliott experiments with Harmonic. I donít understand why he didnít name the song Killing Time, since thatís the main phrase in the song but still a title isnít everything. Like Tapeworm I wondered at Alphabet City I wonder why Elliott didnít incorporate a harmonica into more of his songs since it suits them so well. This song seems to be a reflection of the decision of somebody telling their spouse they are pregnant.

5/5

No Name # 3


The overlaid guitars in this track are just amazingly creepy. They fit the mood of the song so extremely well. I donít know exactly what this song is about, but it seems like it was just written about spending the day inside and being angst ridden. This track seems like something youíd see in a movie where it goes through a cast of characters and they are all very depressed and crying in separate scenes. Itís a beautiful, yet sad song that portrays
the feeling of loneliness extremely well.

5/5

Drive All Over Town


This is a simple song about being cheated on. The best part is the ending where Elliott emotional states ďAnd Iíll drive all over town". It really reflects what most people do during times of emotional panic and this song perfectly plays off of that. In my opinion the second best track of the album due to the subtle lyrics and guitar play that just make it extremely enjoyable.

5/5

No Name # 4


A fast paced song about Elliott and his mother leaving an abusive relationship with his stepfather. Starts to bring up the pace of the album for the next track while still maintaining the atmosphere of the other songs. ďBut you did wear cowboy boots" is such a great line and it really makes the song for me.

5/5

Last Call


Wow, where did this come? The song starts off with a simple acoustic line and then breaks into an electric and loud song. It really throws off the slow pace of the earlier songs, but with No Name # 4 before it you are actually wanting there to be a loud and fast song, and Elliott doesnít disappoint. Throwing in metaphors about god, drinking, and broken relationship we get the finest track on the album. The line ďI wanted her to tell me that she would never wake me" seals it as being one of the best Elliott Smith songs as well.

5/5

Kiwi Maddog 20/20


A great instrumental ending that brings you back down to reality after the heavy hitting ďLast Call" The perfect closure to an album of acoustic tracks an electric guitar just echoes through a simple acoustic riff. The thoughts of what you have just heard pass through your brain as you realize the perfect album you just experienced.

5/5

Iím serious when I rate every song a 5/5. This is Elliottís finest work, and one of the best albumís Iíve heard. Whether you are depressed and need something to relate to, or just feel like kicking back and listening to something laidback this album will do it for you. It like many great albums isnít only music but rather an experience.

5/5



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Comments:Add a Comment 
morrissey
Moderator
June 12th 2005



1688 Comments


Nice review, nice album. Not a 5/5 for me, but close enough.

Zappa
June 12th 2005



355 Comments


This album really is out of this world.

llama1600
July 30th 2005



8 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

No Name #1 is probably my favorite song of all time, and this is such an amazing record. Maybe my favorite Elliott record.

analrightstart
June 23rd 2006



96 Comments


need to get my hands on this.

Hatshepsut
July 17th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Just bought this. Must listen to.

chumpradio
July 24th 2006



4 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Decent review.

The cd however, is far better than decent. Elliott was amazing.

livinginafantasy
September 15th 2006



35 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

brilliant album. nice review.
two thumbs up.

BringHomeTheBacon
September 15th 2006



248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Despite it's bad production and short length, this might be my favorite Elliott album. Every song is deserving of a 5/5 except maybe No Name #3 and Drive All Over Town, which are still great songs. Kiwi Maddog is especially awesome, reminds me of like some old western movie in black and white.This Message Edited On 09.15.06

RottedFlesh
September 15th 2006



213 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good Review. I think this and his first C.D. are the most essential to a collection. I liked No Name 1 as well ^_^.

Muisee
November 12th 2006



679 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is his first album :/.

Sepstrup
December 18th 2006



1563 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Either/Or is definitely a better album than this, but it's still fantastic. At least a 4 for me.

Mosizzla
January 31st 2007



2 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

really nice album, love the four track 'production'

Paiste.Fan.
August 16th 2007



19 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

elliott smith...I miss you man. I love the music cuz all the emotion he puts into it

MrKite
November 8th 2007



5020 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Condor Ave.'s lyrics are great. This is probably my favorite by him so far.

timbo8
November 20th 2007



618 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i love condor ave. too, it's one of my favorites from him.

Two-Headed Boy
November 30th 2007



4527 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is, essentially, a perfect album.

Spare
July 26th 2008



5252 Comments


I've never heard of this guy until two days ago.
What the hell.

Digging: Radiator Hospital - Torch Song

MrKite
July 26th 2008



5020 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

the last two tracks are easily the best. kiwi maddog is the perfect ending.

MonorailCat
August 6th 2008



118 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is a must listen, I bought this after his others, but I still love it none the less.

StickmanSouffle
March 2nd 2009



286 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Just got this. Elliott Smith is the coolbags.



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