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Anthony McGill’s Top Five Albums

Music is McGill’s biggest passion away from snooker, so we asked the two-time ranking event champion to name his five favourite albums…

Meat is Murder – The Smiths

Released in 1985, the band’s second studio album and their only one which topped the UK Charts. The album was produced by band members Morrissey and Johnny Marr and contained political undertones, taking aim at the Thatcher government, while its title obviously advocated vegetarianism.

McGill said: “This is something  I agree with as a statement, being vegan myself. There is a song on the album called ‘Meat is Murder’ and it’s just about how killing animals is wrong. I didn’t become a vegan because of this song, but obviously Morrissey is a vegan as well and the song is just brilliant. ‘The meat in your mouth as you savour the flavour of murder’; those lyrics are something I feel quite strongly about.

“It’s a cool album as a whole and despite the name it is very upbeat. There is another song on it called ‘Well I Wonder’ which is actually about lost love. The Smiths are great at making catchy tunes even when the lyrics are actually very serious.”

The Wall – Pink Floyd

A Rock Opera which was released in 1979. It was Pink Floyd’s 11th album and was compiled to tell the story of Pink, a fictional character based on lead singers Syd Barrett and Roger Waters.

McGill said: “I listened to this for the first time about a month ago and I was completely blown away. I know it is a concept album which tells a story, but it is hard to describe what makes it unique.  The way each song just flows into the next one is incredible. It isn’t really an album, but more of an experience. The Smiths were always and still are my favourite band, but after starting to listen to more of Pink Floyd I’ve really been taken aback. I can see them becoming my new favourite band down the line.”

The Queen is Dead – The Smiths

The Smiths’ third studio album released in 1986. It peaked in the UK Charts at number two and was acclaimed critically. The album has stood the test of time and in 2013 was named as the greatest of all-time by NME.

McGill said: “It is probably considered the best Smiths album by most of their fans. The first song is called ‘The Queen is Dead’ and that is an amazing introduction to the whole thing. The other track on there I love, possibly my favourite ever song, is ‘The Boy With The Thorn in his Side’. The middle of the album moves into a series of slower songs and it then picks up again.”

Noel Gallagher – Who Built the Moon?

The third album from Noel Gallagher’s ‘High Flying Birds’, released in 2017. It was produced by David Holmes, an electronic musician who has composed the soundtrack to numerous films including the modern remake of Ocean’s Eleven.

McGill said: “I don’t like a lot of Oasis music if I’m completely honest. I think it is just everything that comes with them, the stigma of being laddish. However, Noel Gallagher on his own is really good, he was the talent in Oasis. Noel plays the guitar, writes the lyrics and seems to be the creative one. This album was very different and in my opinion a lot better. I can play a bit of very basic guitar and I can pick one up and just play one of his songs. He writes music in a straightforward way that is easy to pick up. It isn’t very complex in terms of its difficulty to play, but at the same time it is very clever and great to listen to.”

Louder Than Bombs – The Smiths

A compilation album originally released in 1987. It’s the American version of the British compilation ‘The World Won’t Listen’. Such was the demand that ‘Louder Than Bombs’ was eventually released in the UK as well.

McGill said: “The Smiths seemed to release a lot of stand-alone singles that were not even in albums. I really enjoyed listening to this album as there is a lot of stuff on there which is really cool that you don’t get to listen to in their other albums.”