Morrissey/Bona Drag

Deposed former lead singer for influential Alternative Rock Band The Smiths, Morrissey released his first solo record Viva Hate in 1989. Morrissey followed up that release with a collection of songs from that release and numerous 12″ singles that were released during the following year. This collection features the first Morrissey tracks to chart in the U.S. and showed a marked progression of his popularity with the listening pool of Americans. This release was the beginning of the long and storied career of the “King Of Mope” in the U.S. and is full of classic Morrissey tracks that remain popular 19 years on.

Picadilly Palare’—-Featuring a musical landscape that was not far removed from the sound of The Smiths. Morrissey delivers a vocal that is almost pure perfection. the double entendres and the warbling of the voice allows us to know that Stephan is alive and well and leaves our brain screaming for more. This is brilliant and was a favorite track of mine for months and months upon it’s release. Reached # 2 on the Modern Rock Chart.

Interesting Drug—-Flirting with his obsession of crime and gangsters, Morrissey delivers a vocal that is subdued yet powerful. Reaching # 11 on the charts, Morrissey further cemented his success in the U.S. the music is a pleasant jangly affair that is not far removed from his past endeavors. the falsetto appears with mastery and the mood shifts of the music tell a story in themselves. This is fantastic!

November Spawned A Monster—-Never a favorite track of mine, Morrissey scored his third top ten in the U.S, with this single. Telling a tale of a handicapped child who grows to become independent, the whole mood of the song is slightly pretentious and dis tasteful to me….but, that is just me…..plenty of you obviously loved it.

Will Never Marry—-Borrowing the gloom and disdain of the past, Morrissey delivers a vocal that is everything that we required and needed from him. The music is a grand affair full of up front drums and lots of layered strings. This gives the song a very full feel, even though the vocal is almost slight and quiet. This is without a doubt Morrissey at his best and I return to this composition often. Wonderful!!!!

Such A Little Thing Makes Such A Big Difference—-stepping right from the 1987 songbook of The Smiths, Morrissey is vibrant in lyric and masterful in tone and emotion. The music is a nice jangly affair that seems to have the drums real up front in the mix. Lyrically. Morrissey treads ground that we have heard before, but never tire of. When he sings “…..most people keep their brains between their legs.” You wonder if you fall in that category. Fantastic!!!!

The Last Of The Famous International Playboys—-Further exploring his fascination with the criminal element, Morrissey makes a plea to the Kray Brothers, notable British criminals. Reaching #3 on the US chart, Morrissey scored with his lyrical content among the Independents. This song is fabulous…the music is classic and the double back chorus is a nice’ display of the Morrissey chops.

Oiuja Board, Ouija Board—-His 2nd #2 single in the US. Morrisseycontinued to expand the mystery of his persona. I love this and still have the 12″ vinyl in pristine shape. When he sings the line ….”it spelled S-T-E-V-E-N…..” I just smile with memories of pleasure when I first heard this. Brilliance not soon to be repeated by ‘The Moz’.

Hairdresser On Fire—-Still… this day…one of my very favorite Morrissey tracks of all time. The sound is Smith heavy and the vocal is so emotive and meaningful to me. I never tire of this song and return to it almost on a monthly basis. The style of Morrissey was never as well displayed as this. He was beginning to explore a more aggressive guitar style and the drum is right in your face….yet the vocal still remains calm and serene yet vital to the whole structure of the song. I LOVE THIS MAN!!!!

Everyday Is Like Sunday—-From the “Viva Hate” release, and possibly one of the best known Morrissey solo tracks, he still preforms it live to this day. The song is a moody affair that is full of jangly comfortable guitars and overwhelming string arrangements. The emotion in his voice sucks you into the whole melancholy of the song and just allows you to freely feel. A classic masterpiece that will live long after THE MAN does.

He Knows I’d Love To See Him—-Giving rapid nosy fans even more insight to his preference, the song is a glaring admission of the need for attention from anywhere. Morrissey displays his trademark falsetto in a masterful way and the music is mellow and serene. This is a wonderful composition with a landscape all of it’s own…one I am proud to own.

Yes, I Am Blind—-Very introspective and telling. When Morrissey says that he can only see the bad and not the good and that there must be something wrong wth him, you question your own feelings and where you belong in the world. Morrissey makes a rare plead to God and begs for a sign…how monumental and telling in the development of his emotional feel. This is a wonderful touching affair that needs to be heard.

Lucky Lisp—-Beginning subtle and sedate, the song opens up into a sexually charged romp that allows Morrissey to show his chops. This is a wonderful excursion into the world of Morrisseythat is fun to visit. I love this track…mainly because of the vocal delivery, but also because of the band he had at the time. The music drives abd drives and is surprisingly aggressive. For a B-side, this was incredible!!!

Suedehead—-My favorite solo track of ALL TIME!!!! The energy of the song is reminiscent of Marr, the word play is classic Morrissey and the delivery is classic with an added edge. There are nice strings included that add to the depth of the song and the jangle of the guitar takes you back to 1985. This is shear brilliance and still a classic song in live performances to this day.

Disappointed—-The drums and the guitar hit you from the onset, the vocal downshifts magically with the tempo of the song and you cannot deny the strong Smiths overtones. The sarcasm and tongue in cheek lyrics are only a slight promise of the things that are to come from this master of irony. The coup d’tet is at the end of the track when Morrissey claims this is the last song he will ever sing again….only to retract it and vow he has changed his mind again… Morrissey.

***** out of 5


2 Responses to “Morrissey/Bona Drag”

  1. Excellent site, keep up the good work

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