The former Smiths frontman has always been clever enough to know that less is more
During a recent chat with former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, I asked the inevitable reunion question.
“I’ll be more than happy to reunite the Smiths as long as it’s all-instrumental and Morrissey plays the cello,” Marr quipped.
Someone hit the rim shot. During a rare chat with Morrissey at South By Southwest seven years ago, the Moz fielded questions, many of which were about the Smiths.
Morrissey noted that the Smiths were offered $5 million to appear at Coachella. He turned it down since money wasn’t an issue.
Since Morrissey and Marr don’t blow big sums of cash like Allen Iverson, it’s about more important factors than filthy lucre.
A Smiths reunion is as unlikely as a Beatles reformation sans John Lennon and George Harrison. It just won’t happen, which is why fans must settle for solo tours. Morrissey, who will perform Saturday, Jan. 12, at the House of Blues in Atlantic City, doesn’t go on many jaunts. During a 2012 interview, he claimed he may retire this year. But it’s difficult to put much stock into that considering how many times Cher (and other performers) said she was on her swan song jaunt. Saturday night’s show will be a chance to experience perhaps the most amusing vocalist in rock history.
The Smiths’ and Morrissey’s solo material are filled with considerable wit and dark cynicism. You can always tell a Morrissey song within a few months, just like a Prince tune is instantly identifiable. Morrissey’s fingerprints are all over tunes, which are often twisted, unpredictable and black as the night.
It’s been three years since Morrissey’s last recorded offering, Years of Refusal. But Morrissey doesn’t have to tour behind anything anymore. His cult fan base in America is more fanatical than his United Kingdom followers.
Part of why Morrissey has never faded away is due to his strong solo albums. Many Smiths fans thought that all was lost when Marr left the band in 1987 and Morrissey followed by pursuing a solo career. Who was going to come up with those brilliant guitar lines? Well, Morrissey found a number of sonic partners and has enjoyed a successful solo career, which is over a quarter-century old, which trumps the Smiths seven-year run.
The gorgeous “Everyday Is Like Sunday,” the oft-misunderstood “Suedehead,” the potent “You’re Going To Need Somebody on Your Side,” the relentlessly catchy “National Front Disco,” the hilarious “We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful” and the poppy “Boy Racer” are just some of Morrissey’s solo tracks that fans cling to like an old blanket.
It’s not just about the Smiths, who are arguably the greatest band of the 1980s, with apologies to Sonic Youth, The Replacements, R.E.M., Metallica and Husker Du.
It’s Morrissey by his lonesome when he plays Atlantic City. But there will be a number of Smith’s tracks. The band can’t be ignored even though that was the case, to an extent, when it existed, at least in America.
I recall experiencing the Smiths during its “Queen Is Dead” tour in 1985 at the Tower Theater and there were plenty of empty seats. Morrissey, performing with a faux hearing aid, was thrilled collecting endless gladiolas. He was a young, brilliant, original frontman.
Unfortunately, most of America didn’t get the Smiths, save those on the West Coast, who adored the band, as well as British peers the Cure and Depeche Mode, who played stadiums in Southern California and theaters in Philadelphia.
Even the American music press didn’t get it. I remember being floored reading then Philadelphia Inquirer music critic Ken Tucker’s review of Strangeways, Here We Come, the final Smiths album, which dropped in 1987.
The Pet Shop Boys are completely different animals on and off stage. While performing, vocalist Neil Tennant and keyboardist Chris Lowe are more than happy to engage a crowd while delivering their material performing in front of a visual production, which rivals Broadway.
A comprehensive listing of entertainment coming to the Atlantic City casinos, Boardwalk Hall and Bader Field.
Las Vegas has long been regarded as a haven for performers to flock to for life after career-death. Where else could Elvis-impersonating cab drivers, Celine Dion and Carrot Top be the hottest acts in...
English songsmith Florence Welch brought her “machine” and a fully packed house with her to Atlantic City's Borgata Event Center this past Saturday, May 12
Depeche Mode Where: Borgata Event Center When: Saturday, Aug. 1, 8pm How Much: Sold Out On the eve of its 30th anniversary, Depeche Mode continues to evolve. Unlike many of its 1980s peers, who are content to ride the wave of nostalgia, the influential British electronic act, continues to break new ground. Vocalist Dave Gahan has added a fresh element to Depeche Mode’s sonic repertoire since he has become a songwriter at mid-life. Gahan’s contributions to the group’s latest album, Sounds of the Universe, which dropped in April and 2005’s Playing the Angel, have made things a little more disparate for the act. Gahan’s lighter lyrics are a nice contrast to guitarist-keyboardist Martin Gore’s dark, subversive but melodic songs. Depeche Mode will showcase cuts from Sounds of the Universe when it returns Saturday, Aug. 1, to the Borgata Event Center; Peter, Bjorn and John will open. Keyboardist Andy Fletcher recently called from Montreal to chat up the disc, detail how difficult it is for the group to come up with a set list after three-decades and why he will hit the blackjack table in Atlantic City. How much of a boost is to add another songwriter’s contributions to the band after all of this time? It’s great...
British band Depeche Mode took its name from a headline in a Paris magazine. French for "fast fashion," its choice suggests that the band hoped to have an immediate, if short-lived, impact on the mus...
Casino Club & Lounge Entertainment
Resorts’ Holiday Fun
Borgata's Nightlife Is Twin-tense
Feel Good at Spa-Tacular Dec. 2-6
Intensity Upgrade in ‘Catching Fire’