My Top 1000 Songs #505: Smoking Her Wings

[I've been writing up my Top 1000 songs on a daily basis--you can see them all in descending order by hitting the All My Favorite Songs tag.]

New Zealand's Bats have plenty of great songs, low-key jangly indie pop from an alternate universe where low-key jangly indie pop rules the airwaves. "Smoking Her Wings," from their 1990 sophomore album The Law Of Things, is on the quieter, broodier side, less perky than their pop stuff, a haunting late-night ballad with a hushed vibe that lingers long after the song ends. There's an inner sadness to the song, but the band's winning cheer wins out even in the darkness. "Without truth, it don't mean nothing; without hope, you won't get far."

Bonus points for an outstanding Barbara Manning cover.

The original:

Live 2004:
Barbara Manning's wonderful version: