The Triumphant Return of Morrissey

Will Spencer 24 May 2014

The news that Morrissey has signed a new record deal comes as a joyous relief. Beset by illness upon illness last year, he was forced to cancel a seemingly infinite number of concerts across the United States. Though hardly underwhelming his occasional appearances were often subdued, given his lofty standards.

This year finds Moz in remarkably fine form, particularly given those not-too-distant health struggles. He is almost two weeks into his current U.S. tour, during which he has showcased three songs from his new album and dipped into areas of his back catalogue which many feared would never again see the stage. ‘Hand In Glove’, the first ever single released by his former band, The Smiths, thirty-one years ago, is an especially pleasant surprise.

The title track of his forthcoming record, ‘World Peace Is None Of Your Business’, the only one as yet released, is a typically direct assault on authority and inequality in the modern world. The relatively straightforward lyrics reflect his disillusionment with life. Morrissey’s poetic creativity has not dulled; he is simply no longer willing to mince his words or employ layers of nuance to dilute his message, to which his band provides a relentless, pounding backdrop.

Earth Is The Loneliest Planet’ opens in exquisite fashion, a flamenco rhythm segueing into Morrissey’s plaintive tones, here the aural equivalent of the softest of caresses. Morrissey and isolation are inseparable, and this ‘aloneness’, as he terms it, continues to be a central part of his appeal. ‘The Bullfighter Dies’, which opens with a jangly Smiths-esque riff, reflects Mozzer’s well-earned status as animal rights champion. Lyrically pithy, it mostly consists of rhymes between adjectives and Spanish cities, a quirky wheeze which would probably appear ridiculous in other hands.

In short, the Morrissey spirit remains alive and well as ever. That his pronouncements are often received with ‘oh that’s so Morrissey’, an observation widely made about the tracklist for ‘World Peace Is None Of Your Business’, is testament to the immovable constancy of his outlook on the world – he is the ultimate individual.