Amy Studt – False Smiles

False Smiles was the first album I ever fell in love with. I was young, and perhaps my music taste was a tad less sophisticated than it has now become, but for all I knew, this was love.

Amy Studt’s lyrics rang true to the lives of many a tween, before the term had even been coined. This is quite possibly because Studt herself was barely out of those years when she penned the album. With the single Just A Little Girl becoming a chart success, I remember being elated to discover that she would be performing on one of my most informative television choices; X-Change. Rushing home from school and watching her performance, I thought that this was the epitome of music. Something truly amazing had just graced my ears and I knew I needed to buy the album. Thus, I discovered False Smiles.

Misfit was to be the second ‘big hit’; A song that remains just as catchy as the first time I heard it. An overly Americanised video accompanied the track with the chorus “You’re superficial I’m a misfit/ But baby that’s ok” and the song was supposed to promote equality amongst cliques, though whether it ever achieved this is less clear. Another shouty pop rock effort came with Ladder In My Tights. A personal favourite of mine, it taught me what C4 was. And she sung about duct tape. I’d never heard anyone sing about duct tape…

Studt could do more than just catchy pop rock. The album showed the versatility of her voice with the softer tones that Studt has continued to use in her later career. Beautiful Lie, Happy Now and If Only all enchanted me. Sadly, over the course of laptop changeovers, I’ve come to lose three of the other tracks. Nobody, Superior Mind and Going Out Of My Mind have all gone AWOL. I’m in no desperate state to download them once more, though I do remember Nobody being yet another of my favourite power ballads to torture my family with as I’d sing proudly to the album.

Through her lyrics, I learnt what being ‘under the thumb’ meant.  Though I’m yet to experience this, I have to thank her for this insight into the world of controlling relationships.

I must also pay particular mention to possibly my favourite Amy Studt song. A non-album track, reduced to being a B side to the Sheryl Crowe cover of All I Wanna Do, You’re Like The Breeze demonstrated Studt’s vocal talent beautifully.

So, thank you Amy Studt. You opened my mind up to the world of singer songwriters, and for that I shall be ever grateful.


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