Beethoven Was Deaf: those were the days

bennyhana22

New Member
Had a very big Moz weekend with the iPod and felt compelled to write!

Let's get a few things straight:
1. I'm not here to bash the Man
2. I've been a huge fan for many, many years
3. I read all the stuff about setlists, performances, cancellations etc
4. I know he's 50+ now

BUT:

I know that M sees himself still as a proper recording artist, and quite rightly. So it's only correct that he should 'tour the new record' etc. I acknowledge that he is not the Morrissey of 1987 onwards, not least of all he is much older. But I listened to BWD for the first time in some time over the weekend and the hairs stood up on the back of my neck. I always have said that in the 5 albums allowed on my desert island, V&I would be the first one in te case...but I'm not so sure. On the basis that my live music experience would then be over, I wonder if having both Moz and the live sound would be better? BWD is MAGNIFICENT. But it left me lamenting the fact that never again do I feel I will see Morrissey, and more importantly his band, play like that again. And I have seen it, and I miss it. It's not just the setlist thing, it's the WAY they play. Alain and Boz on twin duelling guitars was unbelievable. There was bite and fervour, anger and excitemtn. They played FAST but not too fast. Songs came alive on stage, the energy was palpable. I'm afraid I rather see today's M and Band as a Morrissey tribute band. Proficiently getting through the numbers without bringing that passion, energy and intangible element to what it means to be swept along at a gig. The setlist thing IS an issue for me. New record? Fine, 'justified'. Stuff from YATQ, ROTT, understandable. But listen to BWD and you almost wonder how he can bear NOT to play stuff from BD, from YA etc. I know he DOES occasionally drop in an old tune or two (Disappointed in the last few years, Playboy etc) but he seems to have turned his back on the rockabilly glory that is Certain People I know, Glamorous Glue etc. I guess it might be a question of his 50 year old voice struggling to cope with some of that stuff - completely reasonable if the case. I don't actually like November...particularly. But I could listen to the BWD version all day, it is STUNNING. Power, power, power. And when they strike up WHIWOFBS as the closer...OMG. I'm one of those whingers who feel strongly that Smiths songs really have no place in his live armoury any more. That was a different band. I know it's unreasonable to expect him to be like he was so long ago, but I'm just sad that I'll never again get the excitement that I did at Aston Villa, at Battersea. Satan rejected my soul? I heard it once, it was incredible. I guess I should just count myself lucky. I know it's all down to taste. I guess what I'm trying to say is how frustrating it is that M doesn't seem to hear what I hear in some of his back catalogue, or he would want to play those magnificent songs as often as he could.

Discuss

love
Ben
 

jamescagney

Stood at the urinal
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

I feel like we're constantly discussing this. Personally, his last three albums are my top three favorites of his, and V&I and BWD are near the bottom. I like his set lists for the past four tours or so and feel they're pretty evenly distributed between new and old songs.
 

bennyhana22

New Member
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

Thanks for replying JC.

Maybe we're just too differenct in age, you and I. Maybe it's all down to when you were a certain age in Morrissey History. I have no problem with the last three albums. Bits of them are pretty good and I continue to admire him for writing proper, new records, sticking to the principles of musical integrity that he's always championed and labasted a lack of in so many 'musicians' of the last 30 years or more.

But for me, to suggest that the last three were his best work I find 'astonishing', and I mean that with NO element of unkindness or pompousness. It's just that for me, lyrically he isn't a patch on where he was around V&I, BD, KU and Your Arsenal. Musically I think that the quality has reached a plateau of perfectly servicable, occasionally brilliant quality - examples of the latter being '...Paris' which has a real BD air about it and '...Far Off Places' which is rocky and dirty and great. But there are no more Trouble Loves Me's, no more Why Don't You Find Out...s, no more Certain People's. Many might say that was then, don't keep barking on about the past. And they're right. And again I say (arogantly) that unless you saw him at the height of powers that was Spencer, Alain and Boz rocking your bloody head off, then I'm afraid you've never, and will never, see him at his very, very best...

Ben
x
 
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

I'm with you Ben. I prefer Morrissey's music from the 'rockabilly' days.
 
He's older, he's changed, he's happier...

I for one wouldn't change his live shows for anything. They are still intense, emotional and unmistakeably Morrissey. Maybe I would have felt differently had I seen him in the early 90's (i was but a bairn then alas), maybe not. I thought he could never top the brilliance of Speedway but I was proved wrong with I'm Not Sorry, Pigsty, Camden, to name but a few.

it would be nice if he could come back to Liverpool though, the fanny
 

ray_afraid

***********
Beethoven is one of my favorite Moz releases. Everything is great.

But saying he has been ignoring his old catalog recently seems quite untrue to me. Every tour is heavy on the newest material. That's nothing he's started in the 2000's. BWD is very heavy on the YA material (which is great for me, it's my favorite album) just as Live at Earls Court is heavy on YATQ, just as the Tour of the Tormentors was heavy on ROTT, ect ect and he still always plays songs from all over his discography. And saying he has "turned his back on his old rockabilly glory" is certainly false as he has played The Loop (the BEST and most genuinely 'rockabilly' song of his career) at almost every show for the past two years and was ending shows with You're Gonna Need Someone On Your Side not too long ago.
 

dizzywhore_1804

A big-nose who knows...
I agree with what you're saying except I never got to see the old band live. Maybe if I'd made this post I'd be accused of romanticising it so I'm glad you got in before me.

Having been to a few Morrissey gigs since the ROTT tour it does seem like he's struggling these days - perhaps not physically but the enthusiasm doesn't seem to be there. Seeing him at his 50th gig and Albert Hall this year I was struck by how lacklustre his performance seemed. He's still putting in effort, but behind the eyes I'm not so sure.

As for this belief (both his and a few on here) that the past three albums have been his best ever work I'm utterly astonished, and while I respect the opinion I am also depressed by it - people have claimed his style is more in-your-face than it used to be, but I find he's just singing about exactly the same things without the lyrical skill he used to display (most evident in THPGU, OK By Myself and Sorry Doesn't Help on YoR). People are happy to slag off lesser artists on here despite them being infinitely more lyrical interesting, at least certainly less clumsy, than Morrissey has been recently.

As for the setlist I find it boring. I understand he's playing what he likes, but we're paying to see him - a bit less repetition wouldn't leave anyone disappointed.
 

jamescagney

Stood at the urinal
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

Thanks for replying JC. Maybe we're just too differenct in age, you and I.

It's possible. But I'm 39 and got into the Smiths while they were still together. I do think seeing him live tends to make his songs more special to some. There are a handful of songs I wasn't that crazy about until Morrissey forced us to listen to them over and over at his shows. I feel like he picks one or two less popular songs that he likes for his tours, either for something to please him instead of the audience, or to try to get people to like them. Lucky Lisp, for example.

It's true he's been heavily featuring the Loop lately. Interestingly, I can't listen to the recorded version of the Loop at all, because when he does it live, it's SO much better, the old version pales. I need to go find a good quality live version of it.
 

hand in glove

40 percent papier mache
Subscriber
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

Thanks for replying JC.

Maybe we're just too differenct in age, you and I. Maybe it's all down to when you were a certain age in Morrissey History. I have no problem with the last three albums. Bits of them are pretty good and I continue to admire him for writing proper, new records, sticking to the principles of musical integrity that he's always championed and labasted a lack of in so many 'musicians' of the last 30 years or more.

But for me, to suggest that the last three were his best work I find 'astonishing', and I mean that with NO element of unkindness or pompousness. It's just that for me, lyrically he isn't a patch on where he was around V&I, BD, KU and Your Arsenal. Musically I think that the quality has reached a plateau of perfectly servicable, occasionally brilliant quality - examples of the latter being '...Paris' which has a real BD air about it and '...Far Off Places' which is rocky and dirty and great. But there are no more Trouble Loves Me's, no more Why Don't You Find Out...s, no more Certain People's. Many might say that was then, don't keep barking on about the past. And they're right. And again I say (arogantly) that unless you saw him at the height of powers that was Spencer, Alain and Boz rocking your bloody head off, then I'm afraid you've never, and will never, see him at his very, very best...

Ben
x

Well, I don't think it comes down to age, or a certain age in Morrissey history. I'm probably around the same age as you, but I agree with JC. BWD is GREAT, don't get me wrong, but I love his new stuff, and find it easy to grow along and embrace him musically. I miss the old days, too, though. Good times! :guitar:
 

Bluebirds

Well-Known Member
Aston Villa Leisure Centre? Feb 95? Saturday night. What a gig, and I was desperately ill.

As a mid-30s fan, I concur with your reasoning but then I have seen Morrissey since then do some fantastic gigs, RAH 2002, Blackpool 2004, London Palladium 2006, GMex 2006, Lille 2008, Salisbury 2009 spring to mind. (Whoever posted RAH 2009 being lacklustre I completely agree with you and I didn't think the 50th birthday gig was all that)

I think that in those days his touring was relatively sporadic and rare (and maybe thats an age thing) that the whole seeing Morrissey live was a spectacle.
Now I think he's turned into a bit of a vaudeville entertainer often feeling the need to say something onstage? (which he never really used to do back in the early 90s, you actually believed he was genuinely shy)

But in an ideal world that 90s band would still be his live band, you felt there was camaraderie there and a spirit where now, to me, its Morrissey and a backing band.
He should include Smiths songs but arguably not to the extent he does and the saddest thing for me is that I will no longer travel to see Morrissey for a myriad of reasons. That Albert Hall gig being one of them. Manchester or Marr I might (or Glasgow Barras as I was in Glasgow for New Year and everyone Iwas with said you should go to a gig of a band you really love in there)

as an aside I love The Fall and they hardly play any old stuff live. But yet the whole experience of seeing The Fall leaves me entranced. With Moz I'ma fraid to say its dissipating (to put it diplomatically)
 

bennyhana22

New Member
Re: Beethoven Was Deaf...those were the days...

It's possible. But I'm 39 and got into the Smiths while they were still together. I do think seeing him live tends to make his songs more special to some. There are a handful of songs I wasn't that crazy about until Morrissey forced us to listen to them over and over at his shows. I feel like he picks one or two less popular songs that he likes for his tours, either for something to please him instead of the audience, or to try to get people to like them. Lucky Lisp, for example.

It's true he's been heavily featuring the Loop lately. Interestingly, I can't listen to the recorded version of the Loop at all, because when he does it live, it's SO much better, the old version pales. I need to go find a good quality live version of it.

Thanks for all the replies, guys - it was lovely to spark a little discussion after I was so 'taken' by Mosrrissey love over the weekend! For the record, I also listened to the whole of YATQ at the same time, so certainly would not be dismissive of later records.

JC that's amazing! I'm 40 and got into The Smiths AFTER they split, but then Morrissey's solo stuff very shortly after that. I think it's utterly fascinating that you and I are the same age, love The Smiths and yet have quite different likes and loves with M's cannon. I'm particulalry taken by you placing V&I so low (though not in anyway suggesting you are 'wrong') as my experience is that of all the albums, the one that perenially tops the lists of M albums for 'people of our age' is V&I. Certainly in the Music Press of our 3rd and 4th decades, V&I is almost universally seen as his masterpiece. I'm not jumping on the bandwagon, but I do see it as probably his best single long-player, though I am a terrible sucker for Southpaw G! *blushes, though not sure why*

Ben
 

Jukebox Jury

Retired
Been rattling my brains for ages and can't be bothered going to a website to check.....but..... what the hell is
'WHIWOFBS'
I know it will be obvious when someone tells me....until then..... it's bugging me:o

Jukebox Jury
 

bennyhana22

New Member
Aston Villa Leisure Centre? Feb 95? Saturday night. What a gig, and I was desperately ill.

As a mid-30s fan, I concur with your reasoning but then I have seen Morrissey since then do some fantastic gigs, RAH 2002, Blackpool 2004, London Palladium 2006, GMex 2006, Lille 2008, Salisbury 2009 spring to mind. (Whoever posted RAH 2009 being lacklustre I completely agree with you and I didn't think the 50th birthday gig was all that)

I think that in those days his touring was relatively sporadic and rare (and maybe thats an age thing) that the whole seeing Morrissey live was a spectacle.
Now I think he's turned into a bit of a vaudeville entertainer often feeling the need to say something onstage? (which he never really used to do back in the early 90s, you actually believed he was genuinely shy)

But in an ideal world that 90s band would still be his live band, you felt there was camaraderie there and a spirit where now, to me, its Morrissey and a backing band.
He should include Smiths songs but arguably not to the extent he does and the saddest thing for me is that I will no longer travel to see Morrissey for a myriad of reasons. That Albert Hall gig being one of them. Manchester or Marr I might (or Glasgow Barras as I was in Glasgow for New Year and everyone Iwas with said you should go to a gig of a band you really love in there)

as an aside I love The Fall and they hardly play any old stuff live. But yet the whole experience of seeing The Fall leaves me entranced. With Moz I'ma fraid to say its dissipating (to put it diplomatically)

Don't get me wrong BB, and I hope I prefaced this thread carefully enough for people to be clear that this was not intended to be 'negative' or have a pop at the great man. I have seen him Just pre-YATQ, on the YATQ tour, ROTT-tour and enjoyed them all. I've never had a bad night with Moz, if some rather short ones! But AV leisure centre, Feb 1995? Oh my blinkin' gawd! Still to this day the best gig of my life. My first Morrissey gig and just astonishing. Loud, raucous, angry, intense. I've never seen so many grown men openly scream their platonic love for another man! I saw crowd surfers go OTT 2 or three times! He played WDYFOFY and made me cry, he played NMHIF and filled mine. It was unbelievable. And that's what I mean. He's still great, his voice is excellent, but - as another poster astutely commented above - is it there behind the eyes. He can sing the words that I know and love and touch me still but I'm not sure he sings them like he means them so much anymore. And sorry, but I like guitars, loud squealing guitars. The guitars of YA, the guitars of SG, of parts of Maladjusted. Yes the two most maligned records are two of my favourites and I would take SG and Mal over YATQ, ROTT and YOR any day!

Ben
 

bennyhana22

New Member
Been rattling my brains for ages and can't be bothered going to a website to check.....but..... what the hell is
'WHIWOFBS'
I know it will be obvious when someone tells me....until then..... it's bugging me:o

Jukebox Jury

We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful

Listen to it as a set closer on Beethoven Was Deaf and ask yourself if you ever need to hear How Soon Is Now again, especially to end a Morrisseey show!

Ben
 

Bluebirds

Well-Known Member
Morrissey still has "it" though just not consistently. Some of the last 3 albums and b-sides are still unique to Morrissey and the highlights are amongst some of his strongest solo canon. Those highlights stick out like a sore thumb though.

Since the "comeback" its seemingly all about vocal melodies, rather than lyrical content (his singing on ROTT and YOR is pretty spectacular, maybe partially down to studio wizardry) but it must be difficult as a 50year old recording artiste of 25 years plus standing not to repeat the same themes and to discover new inspiration. This is why ROTT was, for me, up there with those halycon 90s days. However I rarely listen to it whilst with Vauxhall, Southpaw and Your Arsenal I do (Southpaw being an album I have grown to love)

I dunno. Does any of it matter? Not really.:tears:
 

Jukebox Jury

Retired
We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful

Listen to it as a set closer on Beethoven Was Deaf and ask yourself if you ever need to hear How Soon Is Now again, especially to end a Morrisseey show!

Ben

Thanks - I actually just did go to ''passions'' website as I want to go to bed with a clear mind:lbf: (but thanks anyway:thumb:)

Can't listen to the album as I don't have any live Morrissey albums.
I only have three live albums in my whole collection (one is 'Rank' and only been played three times)
The other two are Siouxsie & The Banshees 'Nocturn' (I was there for the first night at Royal Albert Hall in 1983) and a Toyah album:guitar:
Live albums and live B-sides just don't float my boat.

Jukebox Jury
 

anon x

New Member
it must be difficult as a 50year old recording artiste of 25 years plus standing not to repeat the same themes and to discover new inspiration.

Bowie,David Bryne,Eno,John Cale,Elvis Costello,Mark E Smith among others have all managed it.

Morrissey is stuck in the groove.
 

bennyhana22

New Member
Morrissey still has "it" though just not consistently. Some of the last 3 albums and b-sides are still unique to Morrissey and the highlights are amongst some of his strongest solo canon. Those highlights stick out like a sore thumb though.

Since the "comeback" its seemingly all about vocal melodies, rather than lyrical content (his singing on ROTT and YOR is pretty spectacular, maybe partially down to studio wizardry) but it must be difficult as a 50year old recording artiste of 25 years plus standing not to repeat the same themes and to discover new inspiration. This is why ROTT was, for me, up there with those halycon 90s days. However I rarely listen to it whilst with Vauxhall, Southpaw and Your Arsenal I do (Southpaw being an album I have grown to love)

Couldn't agree more. I remarked to myself listening to Quarry on Saturday just how fantastic his voice had BECOME. And ROTT was a super return to 90's rocking out, but with a little too much of the brass and keyboard moments that has made his sound a little too 'soft' for THIS Morrissey fan. Remember how hard The Smiths rocked? I guess the fundemental issue for me is that I like my music LOUD (unless its the quiet bits I like!) and so sweet as the I'm not sorry's and Let me kiss you's are, and enjoy them like I do, they're not Morrissey snarling, tongue out, shirt open, fake cuts and bruises and in your face. Still love him though

Ben
 

Bluebirds

Well-Known Member
Don't get me wrong BB, and I hope I prefaced this thread carefully enough for people to be clear that this was not intended to be 'negative' or have a pop at the great man. I have seen him Just pre-YATQ, on the YATQ tour, ROTT-tour and enjoyed them all. I've never had a bad night with Moz, if some rather short ones! But AV leisure centre, Feb 1995? Oh my blinkin' gawd! Still to this day the best gig of my life. My first Morrissey gig and just astonishing. Loud, raucous, angry, intense. I've never seen so many grown men openly scream their platonic love for another man! I saw crowd surfers go OTT 2 or three times! He played WDYFOFY and made me cry, he played NMHIF and filled mine. It was unbelievable. And that's what I mean. He's still great, his voice is excellent, but - as another poster astutely commented above - is it there behind the eyes. He can sing the words that I know and love and touch me still but I'm not sure he sings them like he means them so much anymore. And sorry, but I like guitars, loud squealing guitars. The guitars of YA, the guitars of SG, of parts of Maladjusted. Yes the two most maligned records are two of my favourites and I would take SG and Mal over YATQ, ROTT and YOR any day!

Ben

Do you also think that in those pre-internet days not really having a diddly squit what was going to come next may have played some part in proceedings? And maybe seeing those Vauxhall songs live? And it was your first Moz gig? Lucky you!!!

That AV gig was f***ing spectacular
 
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