Johnny Marr, with whom Morrissey had created some of the era's most resonant sounds, could blithely fold himself into new projects – be it the The or in Electronic with New Order's Bernard Sumner. Morrissey, on the other hand, had to find a way to command the spotlight on his own.

There was no small amount of pressure, since the Smiths – who were rounded out by Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce – had become critical darlings over the previous five years. They seemed to come apart, however, over twin issues: Morrissey reportedly wasn't a fan of Marr's outside musical interests, and Marr in turn apparently bristled at his long-time partner's stubbornness when it came to material.

Whether Morrissey took that to heart or not is open to conjecture. But what's clear is that even on an initial album that bore direct links, in sound and tone, with the Smiths – Viva Hate memorably included "Bengali in Platforms," a song which the latter-era Smiths reportedly attempted before splitting for good – Morrissey was already rushing headlong out of his former group's lengthy shadow.

After that, Morrissey tried on a number of styles and settings, even forming a band that has lasted far longer than the Smiths. But which project finished first in our list of Morrissey Albums Ranked in Order of Awesomeness? (We're focusing only on original albums, not live projects or collections.) Scroll through the below gallery to find out more.

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