Oh you’ve come back today? Pleasantly surprised given that I did warn what to expect.
Volume 2 is every bit as good as Volume 1. The ten tracks selected yesterday were for a specific one-off record that I thought would flow very well and the concept for today is the same.
Suedehead from Viva Hate (1988)
The four minutes of music that calmed our fears. and proof that the end of The Smiths was not the last significant statement to be made in rock’n’roll.
You Have Killed Me from Ringleader of The Tormentors (2006)
Another of the more catchy tunes from his long career, it’s of a rockist type that none of us could have ever imagined him tackling back in the 80s. But it is the sort of sound he has increasingly embraced as the years have gone on, partly as that’s the domain of his backing bands of recent times but also as it suits his more limited vocal delivery the older he gets.
My Life Is A Succession of People Saying Goodbye b-side to First Of The Gang To Die (2004)
As mentioned yesterday, some of the finest songs have inexplicably been relegated to the obscurity of b-sides. This is a lovely slow/mid-tempo number in which our protagonist, not for the first time, bemoans his lack of luck in the love stakes.
The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get from Vauxhall and I (1994)
The single which preceded the release of the LP and took him back into the UK Top 10 for the first time in six years. It was a pleasant and welcome surprise that, after a run of singles and albums in which he was embracing genres like glam and rockabilly, he was returning to the more gentle almost indie-type of music with which he had first found fame. Another one which still sounds great all these years later which is testament to the production skills of Steve Lillywhite.
All You Need Is Me from Years Of Refusal (2009)
Originally a new song on a 2008 ‘Greatest Hits’ compilation, it was added to the following year’s studio LP, his ninth in all but what turned out to be his last for five years. Another rock rather than pop tune, its inclusion is as much to do with the self-deprecating lyric as anything else – something that Morrissey has done to great effect many times over the years.
You’re Gonna Need Someone On Your Side from Your Arsenal (1992)
Another of the glam rock efforts from the album that was produced by Mick Ronson, this is another lyric in which Moz doesn’t take himself too seriously. Hard to imagine that it was co-written by the bloke resposnible for the ghastly Perfect by Fairground Attraction which went to #1 in the late 80s.
Everyday Is Like Sunday from Viva Hate (1988)
Probably his best known and best-loved song here in the UK – certainly judging from the mass singalongs it entices when played at outdoor festivals. Oddly enough, not one that I listen to all that often nowadays but included here as it was the perfect fit between what went before it and what comes next…..
First Of The Gang To Die from You Are The Quarry (2004)
The other song which also ensures a massive singalong when aired lived. This opened his comeback/birthday gig in Manchester back in 2004 and it is the sole occasion when I have genuinely been worried for my health when watching music thanks to the massive crowd surge at the MEN Arena which lifted both myself and Mrs V clean off our feet; for a few seconds it felt like we were going to fall down and be crushed, accidentally, under hundreds of pairs of feet. But we were determined to see this particular song through before retreating to somewhere a lot safer and so we held each other as tightly as we could and just went with the crazy flow. It proved to be strangely exhilarating.
Sister I’m A Poet b-side to Everyday Is Like A Sunday single (1988)
Another quality b-side that was superior to many of the songs that made the cut for Viva Hate. It was exciting to buy the early solo singles with the knowledge that, as with his former band, some of the best stuff was only ever going to be available in such forms. Little did we know that all sorts of re-issuing and re-packaging would entail in the years ahead to make them more readily available.
Tomorrow from Your Arsenal (1992)
Get past the clumsy opening 20 seconds and you’ll come to the excellent ending to Your Arsenal and a song that was remixed for release as a single in the USA. Another of the pleading lovelorn lyrics for which he is famed, this time over a tune that is reminiscent of The Smiths.
And with that, I’ll sign off and await the criticism for those tunes not included these past two days.