New single - "Jacky's Only Happy When She's Up On The Stage"; first play on Jeremy Vine show

UPDATE Nov. 7:

Link to pre-order limited edition 7" (Dec. 8 release date) posted by an anonymous person:

Jacky's Only Happy When She's Up on the Stage / You'll Be Gone (Live) - Norman Records

Jacky’s Only Happy When She’s On Stage is the second single to be taken from Morrissey's Low In High School album, his first since 2014, which is being met with a mix of excited anticipation and ambivalence. It will be backed with a live version of You’ll Be Gone. Limited edition 7” on the massive BMG label.


Now on YouTube and other streaming / download services. Link posted by Tbevie:


Also on Spotify as a single:






Jeremy Vine has announced via twitter:


1st play on his show tomorrow 12.00pm - 2.00pm


UPDATE 9:25 PM PT:

Some posts moved to the thread:

"Jacky's Only Happy When She's Up On The Stage" - sleeve posted on @officialmoz / Twitter

41187_jackys_only_happy_sleeve.jpg
 
Last edited by a moderator:
A

Anonymous

Guest
This thread has quenched my curiosity about production. For me Vauxhall had beautiful production, very dreamy and nostalgic. Quarry on the other hand had a very synthetic and bland production.

So my question is, which Morrissy albums had the best production and which had the worst?

The production on LIHS is superb. What a fantastic single. I don't say this lightly. The instruments and vocals are SPOT ON.

I don't think it's actually very easy - at all - to say which albums have the best and which have the worst production. This is because technology improves over time: instruments, cabling, pedals are much improved. Then bass and treble response from various amplifiers improves over time too. So, the answer is, that you don't - ever - get a level playing field.

Hazard
x
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
So my question is, which Morrissy albums had the best production and which had the worst?
Obviously it's subjective, but I'd say:

THE BEST
Vauxhall - the whole thing just sounds like a dream - incredibly lush.
Viva Hate/Bona Drag - these albums still sound amazing, and so fresh sonically they could have been released yesterday. Stephen Street obviously knew how to get a f***ing great sound.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS
Your Arsenal - great, glossy glam sound - also surprisingly atmospheric in the quieter moments.
World Peace - I don't think the songs are very good, but I love the production - which is why 'Jacky' baffles me, as it sounds lifeless, and as thick as soup.

THE WORST
Quarry - easily. This stands alone as clinical, dead-sounding. Great songs, terrible cardboard recording.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
The bad man would do wrong. Jacky would stay happy. While will they blame?
 

Marco

Junior Member
Nobody is buying physical copies of anything anymore, so who gives a shit? Prime the tour and album release, there you go. Make that money by walking the boards and selling the shirts. The albums are almost afterthoughts nowadays.

Oohh, speak for yourself. I prefer the CD and/or the vinyl. For me, digital is the very same of don't have a shit!
 

TheYoungest

Member
HONOURABLE MENTIONS
Your Arsenal - great, glossy glam sound - also surprisingly atmospheric in the quieter moments.

Interesting. I've always thought of Your Arsenal as one of the production peaks myself (definitely one of the musical and lyrical peaks), but I was listening to it the other day and wondering...

As someone who's dabbled in production myself, almost invariably with rock bands, there's something very familiar about the sound. You can tell that it was recorded with minimal digital interference - just a good room, a nice board, and some traditional outboard gear. All the parts are nicely arranged, and there's a lot of tasteful overdubbing, which is also kind of necessary when you work like that (I think 'Brown Sugar' is the gold standard of this technique - whenever one of the guitars starts getting wayward, another overdub enters the mix).

My point is that it sounds great - everything feels like it reaches a tasteful 90% of its potential - but its also very conservative. Even the vocals are buried. Don't get me wrong - it's a cohesive album throughout - but I don't feel like any prizes should be awarded for making an album in 1992 that sounds like the fourth-to-best of 1972.

If you look at Joe Chicarelli's work by comparison, I think it's a lot more ambitious. I just listened to 'Jacky' in my studio, through some pretty neutral monitors, and I'm inspired. The bass is just exquisite. The way he builds such a dynamic sound out of all those layers of distorted guitars is beautiful, and pretty well every production aspect sounds deliberate (Moz's distance from the mic, those beautiful delayed guitars in the verses, the huge drum sound that carries the groove - lots of overdubs, but none of them extraneous).

There are some great interviews with JC on Youtube (here's one example) which give some insight into how he gets such fantastic results. You can also sort of see why him and Moz have such an excellent working relationship. Although they're both passionate about what they do, I can't imagine either of them ever treading on the other's toes. Whatever characters Moz might like to lionize (remember the Sandie Shaw stories?) I think it does him good to have technical, thoughtful types around.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I just listened to this in my stereo system at home, and now I can truly appreciate the production and arrangement... I love these last three singles more than World Peace as a whole.
 

g23

Always crashing in the same car
Oohh, speak for yourself. I prefer the CD and/or the vinyl. For me, digital is the very same of don't have a shit!
I prefer physical copies as well. The money isn't in selling records anymore. It's in the tours and merchandise.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
Interesting. I've always thought of Your Arsenal as one of the production peaks myself (definitely one of the musical and lyrical peaks), but I was listening to it the other day and wondering...

As someone who's dabbled in production myself, almost invariably with rock bands, there's something very familiar about the sound. You can tell that it was recorded with minimal digital interference - just a good room, a nice board, and some traditional outboard gear. All the parts are nicely arranged, and there's a lot of tasteful overdubbing, which is also kind of necessary when you work like that (I think 'Brown Sugar' is the gold standard of this technique - whenever one of the guitars starts getting wayward, another overdub enters the mix).

My point is that it sounds great - everything feels like it reaches a tasteful 90% of its potential - but its also very conservative. Even the vocals are buried. Don't get me wrong - it's a cohesive album throughout - but I don't feel like any prizes should be awarded for making an album in 1992 that sounds like the fourth-to-best of 1972.

If you look at Joe Chicarelli's work by comparison, I think it's a lot more ambitious. I just listened to 'Jacky' in my studio, through some pretty neutral monitors, and I'm inspired. The bass is just exquisite. The way he builds such a dynamic sound out of all those layers of distorted guitars is beautiful, and pretty well every production aspect sounds deliberate (Moz's distance from the mic, those beautiful delayed guitars in the verses, the huge drum sound that carries the groove - lots of overdubs, but none of them extraneous).

There are some great interviews with JC on Youtube (here's one example) which give some insight into how he gets such fantastic results. You can also sort of see why him and Moz have such an excellent working relationship. Although they're both passionate about what they do, I can't imagine either of them ever treading on the other's toes. Whatever characters Moz might like to lionize (remember the Sandie Shaw stories?) I think it does him good to have technical, thoughtful types around.

Let's not forget just how bad Morrissey's band were prior to this album.

For Mick Ronson to go into a studio with those musicians and emerge with that album was nothing short of miraculous.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
So my question is, which Morrissey albums had the best production and which had the worst?

Best: Your Arsenal, Viva Hate, Vauxhall and I

Worst: Kill Uncle, Maladjusted

You are the Quarry deserves a mention as it was just what was required at the time. A much stronger and livelier production than Maladjusted and a deserved hit.
 
E

Eldritch

Guest
I'm really curious how anyone could interpret this as a Brexit song. It's clearly autobiographical:

[Verse 1]
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
I make this claim, now let me explain
Since she lost you
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
Free in the truth of make-believe
Since she lost you

[Chorus 1]
She is determined to prove
How she can build up the pain
Of every lost and lonely day

[Verse 2]
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
She'll make you believe what you'll never believe
Since she lost you
Jacky's only Jacky when she's up on the stage
Living bodies that actually move!
Since she lost you

[Chorus 2]
She is determined to prove
How she can fill up the page
Of every lost and lonely day
1, 'u-xx_large_top_margin': $height > 1}" style="box-sizing: border-box; display: block;">

[Verse 3]
"Cue lights! I am singing to my lover at night!
Scene Two: Everyone who comes must go!
Scene Four: Blacker than ever before!
Scene Six: This country is making me sick!"

[Verse 4]
Jacky cracks when she isn't on stage
See the effects of sexual neglect

No script, no crew, no auto-cue
No audience telling her what to do!
Exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit
 

Famous when dead

Vulgarian
Moderator
I'm really curious how anyone could interpret this as a Brexit song. It's clearly autobiographical....
Partly due to press coverage like this?

Rolling Stone:
Hear Morrissey Slam United Kingdom in Brusque New Song.
"This country is making me sick," Morrissey declares on new 'Low in High School' cut.
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/hear-morrissey-slam-united-kingdom-in-urgent-new-song-w511198

Pitchfork:
Morrissey previously performed the track for BBC Radio 6: That version included a chant of “Brexit, exit, Brexit, exit.”
https://pitchfork.com/news/listen-t...-jackys-only-happy-when-shes-up-on-the-stage/

If it wasn't about Brexit, by time people read this type of article - it will be!
For myself, it's too ambiguous to pronounce judgement either way.
Yes, it could have some link to Brexit, but the 'sexual neglect' bit would need better explaining for me to go along with that symbolism.
Regards,
FWD.
 

gordyboy9

its not me its you.
lyric change,jacky wears a nappy when shes up on the stage.
re - production,when Ms voice is in the background its chug rock and when its clear,strong and upfront its poor production.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Maladjusted is hands down Morrissey's worst produced album. Shrill, and lacking the soft touch of his previous records. Southpaw Grammar wasn't exactly a production high point either, but Maladjusted was definitely off the rails in terms of previous standards.

You Are The Quarry wasn't exactly a poorly produced album, but I think it was fairly flat in its sound, and well, pedestrian. Yet another Morrissey album that didn't seem to have a distinctness to support his eccentric vocals, and subject matter.

I would rate Years of Refusal next only because it seemed to actually go backwards in time in terms of its sound. It was a mixture of Quarry like blandness, and Maladjusted like shrillness. This might not be entirely a producers fault, but hey, you're there for a reason.

I think World Piece is a wonderfully produced album second to Vauxhall or Your Arsenal. It was actually a fine album minus some of the the wonky subject matter, and lyrics.

So far, the production on Low In High School sounds great, but again, the patchiness of the lyrics sets it apart from his career high points, and it seems to include some of the production cliches of his previous albums.

Jackie is great single. It's no Istanbul, or Irish Blood English Heart, but it's a nice biting track like The Father Who Must Be Killed, and a welcome relief to the inanity of Spent The Day In Bed. I Wish You Lonely sounds uninspired.

So my ranking is:
1. Bona Drag
2. Vauxhall & I
3. Your Arssnal (could rival the previous two)
4. World Piece (could be number 3)
5. Low In High School (so far)

Chicarelli is being used again for a reason. He's like a Lillywhite, or Stephen Street in Morrissey's cannon. He knows how to keep the sound unified, but varied. He was good choice.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Partly due to press coverage like this?

Rolling Stone:
Hear Morrissey Slam United Kingdom in Brusque New Song.
"This country is making me sick," Morrissey declares on new 'Low in High School' cut.
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/hear-morrissey-slam-united-kingdom-in-urgent-new-song-w511198

Pitchfork:
Morrissey previously performed the track for BBC Radio 6: That version included a chant of “Brexit, exit, Brexit, exit.”
https://pitchfork.com/news/listen-t...-jackys-only-happy-when-shes-up-on-the-stage/

If it wasn't about Brexit, by time people read this type of article - it will be!
For myself, it's too ambiguous to pronounce judgement either way.
Yes, it could have some link to Brexit, but the 'sexual neglect' bit would need better explaining for me to go along with that symbolism.
Regards,
FWD.
Yeah, but it's no secret that Morrissey supported Brexit, so the question is, why wouldn't he say Brexit? If he supports it, it's a prefect moment to express it, and Morrissey is know for replacing lyrics with alternative meanings live.

We're used to his feelings on the subject, so while I think it's an ignorant position to hold, it doesn't change much. Morrissey is an ignorant person; just like most people's family and friends are ignorant people. They don't read, they don't question, and they don't think. You can't be intelligent if you don't read. It's an impossibility.

He's always been a bit of an uneducated ass who just so happens to be a good jingle man for timid youths.

He's balancing his effete, gay sensibilities with his callous working class upbringing. He's bound to make a fool of himself on important issues occasionally.
 

TheYoungest

Member
Let's not forget just how bad Morrissey's band were prior to this album.

For Mick Ronson to go into a studio with those musicians and emerge with that album was nothing short of miraculous.

Oh, absolutely! It's a real guitar masterpiece, and there's a certain dynamic between Alain and Boz - Alain playing stark, economic melodies, Boz adding the acoustic "chug" - that wasn't present on the Kill Uncle tour and can probably be attributed to Mick Ronson (particularly evident on 'Seasick, yet still docked'). There's also some nice use of Ebow and feedback - and, hey, 'Jean Genie' is one hell of a riff!

I didn't mean to claim that Joe Chicarelli was a better producer than Mick Ronson (how would you begin to compare?), only that I preferred the production on his albums... or should I say "the sonics"? "Producer" is such a nebulous term - It covers people (Tony Visconti?) who have strong opinions on compression ratios and pre-delay settings, and people (Rick Rubin, allegedly) who never so much as tweak an EQ band, yet appear to have a radical effect on literally every other aspect of the creative process (or not, as the case may be).

Interesting that Maladjusted had such weak production, given that it was also produced by Lillywhite. Possibly a good case for not sticking with one producer for too many consecutive albums. I remember reading about how the drums on 'Speedway' were recorded at Hook End Manor. They schlepped hundreds of feet of cabling in from London and tracked them in the dining room, because Lillywhite wanted to capture the lively reverb! I imagine the ingenuity must run a little dry by album number three.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
My point is that it sounds great - everything feels like it reaches a tasteful 90% of its potential - but its also very conservative. Even the vocals are buried.
See - I think that was exactly what was needed at the time. 'Your Arsenal' was the first record since the Smiths spilit that actually sounded like Morrissey was part of a band again - rather than being the big featured, lead solo artist - with the session musicians playing second fiddle somewhere in the distance.

But yeah - it can sometimes be hard to unpick what the producer is actually responsible for, and how much of the sound came from the engineer, etc. Steve Lillywhyte did thrree albums, with very varying results - how much of that was due to him, the rest of the sound crew, Morrissey sticking his oar in, etc? Very tough to judge. I guess it's a combination of all those elements - sometimes they come together the right way, sometimes they don't.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
I'm really curious how anyone could interpret this as a Brexit song. It's clearly autobiographical:

[Verse 1]
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
I make this claim, now let me explain
Since she lost you
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
Free in the truth of make-believe
Since she lost you

[Chorus 1]
She is determined to prove
How she can build up the pain
Of every lost and lonely day

[Verse 2]
Jacky's only happy when she's up on the stage
She'll make you believe what you'll never believe
Since she lost you
Jacky's only Jacky when she's up on the stage
Living bodies that actually move!
Since she lost you

[Chorus 2]
She is determined to prove
How she can fill up the page
Of every lost and lonely day
1, 'u-xx_large_top_margin': $height > 1}" style="box-sizing: border-box; display: block;">

[Verse 3]
"Cue lights! I am singing to my lover at night!
Scene Two: Everyone who comes must go!
Scene Four: Blacker than ever before!
Scene Six: This country is making me sick!"

[Verse 4]
Jacky cracks when she isn't on stage
See the effects of sexual neglect

No script, no crew, no auto-cue
No audience telling her what to do!
Exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's running to the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit
Everybody's heading for the exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit, exit

Absolutely! Morrissey on the South Bank Show said that when he is on stage he can relax and be the natural / normal me. (The "abnormal me, perhaps) "Exit" could refer to the end of Jacky's show / a symbol of DEATH / chased by Father Time and the Grim Reaper. It's also funny cos the audience could be 'running to the exit" before the show ends cos' the act sucks. There's also something a bit scary about the ending when you think of these deluded terrorists shooting at people during concerts. Brilliant ending /ambiguous...as the lights fade...
 
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