A new Elliott Smith solo version of ‘Plainclothes Man’ has been revealed – listen

The mellow version is part of the soundtrack to Smith movie 'Heaven Adores You'

A new version of ‘Plainclothes Man’ – originally recorded by Elliott Smith‘s band Heatmiser for their third and final album ‘Mic City Sons’ – has been revealed as part of the soundtrack to Smith documentary ‘Heaven Adores You’.

‘Plainclothes Man’ is a fully fledged heavy-electric track on ‘Mic City Sons’, but a chilled solo track in its newly-revealed alternative incarnation. ‘Mic City Songs’ was released after the break-up of Heatmiser in 1996, and after the release of Smith’s debut solo album ‘Roman Candle’.

The documentary ‘Heaven Adores You’ was funded by Smith fans using Kickstarter, and focuses on Smith’s life in the three cities he lived in, Portland (Oregon), New York and Los Angeles.


Smith died of stab wounds in October 2003, in a case that remains controversial.

Listen to the soundtrack version of ‘Plainclothes Man’ via Vevo, below:

‘Heaven Adores You’ premiered at the San Francisco International Film Festival in 2014. Directed by Nickolas Rossi, it features previously unreleased music and interviews with Smith’s friends and collaborators.

Speaking to NME in 2015, Kevin Moyer, an old school friend of Smith’s who worked on the film with Rossi, explained that around half of the songs featured will be new to fans.

“I’m one of the few people who have been able to look into both the Universal and Kill Rock Star vaults,” he said. “Elliott’s masters are split between two labels. It was fun to be able to get in there and listen to songs and try to get some of that music that had never been heard out there and into the fans’ ears.”


The full soundtrack to the Heaven Adores You documentary comes out on February 5, with a tracklisting as follows:

‘Untitled Guitar Finger Picking’ [1983]
‘Untitled Melancholy Song’ [1993]
‘Don’t Call Me Billy’ [early version of ‘Fear City’] [1993]
‘Christian Brothers’ [performed with Heatmiser] [1995]
‘Hamburgers’ [performed with Neil Gust] [1995]
‘Plainclothes Man’ [Elliott solo version] [1996]
‘Unknown Song (instrumental)’ [1994]
‘Say Yes’ [live at Yo Yo Festival] [1997]
‘Unknown (instrumental)’ [1994]
‘Coast To Coast’ [early version] [1995-96]
‘Waltz #1’ (demo) [1997]
‘Untitled Soft Song In F’ [1993]
‘True Love’ [2001]
‘Miss Misery’ [live on Late Night with Conan O’Brien] [1998]
‘L.A.’ [1999]
‘Son Of Sam’ (acoustic) [1999]
‘The Last Hour’ [early version] [1999]
‘Everything Means Nothing To Me’ [1999]
‘Happiness’ [1999]
‘I Love My Room’ [1984-85]