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Morrissey - You Are The Quarry 
By Dan Grote

“America, you know where you can shove your hamburger.” It takes Morrissey less than two minutes to get to this, his new album’s best line.

You Are the Quarry opens with a 3-pronged politely British assault on the US (“America Is Not the World”), England (“Irish Blood, English Heart”) and Christianity (“I Have Forgiven Jesus”).

The first is a story of love and hate: Morrissey, who lives in L.A. but knows why Estonia hates us, finishes his discourse with a string of I Love You’s. The second song is a pure stand against empire that curses former Prime Minister Oliver Cromwell. The third is a more traditional “Oh why do I hate myself so much” rant, nothing unbefitting the man once nicknamed “The Pope of Mope” (God I wish I’d thought of that one). Later in the disc, Morrissey turns his cocked brow towards the world of modern pop stars on the awesomely titled “The World Is Full of Crashing Bores.”

With his slicked-back hair and throaty vibrato, Morrissey is a marvelous crooner, a fact that serves the Irony Demons well on songs like “America” and “Bores.” But when waxing nostalgic, as he does on “Come Back to Camden,” his voice is simply glorious, though one can’t help but feel Morrissey’s pervasive Englishness in lines like “drinking tea with the taste of the Thames” and “under slate-gray Victorian skies.”

Then there are songs that sound like downright pop, such as “First of the Gang to Die,” an upbeat take on gang violence from an Original Gangsta… of shoegazing. Also of a sunnier side is “I Like You,” wherein Morrissey conveys a mix of joy and fear at the prospect of -- gasp -- actually liking someone. Sounds like a teenage sentiment, but in Morrissey’s case, it is the battle cry of a broken man coming out of his shell.

VERDICT: Morrissey is what Chris Carrabba should aspire to be in 20 years’ time, a cult demi-God still able to inspire singalongs but with a madcap and gentle swagger at the heart of it all.


CD Info 

Morrissey - You Are The Quarry
Label: Attack/Sanctuary Records
Rating
 
Tracks:
America Is Not The World
Irish Blood, English Heart
I Have Forgiven Jesus
Come Back To Camden
I'm Not Sorry
World Is Full Of Crashing Bores, The
How Could Anybody Possibly Know How I Feel
First Of The Gang To Die
Let Me Kiss You
All The Lazy Dykes
I Like You
You Know I Couldn't Last
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