NOBODY KNOWS WHAT HUMAN LIFE IS
Oh, you lucky people, Morrissey Watch is back!
News began to emerge about the forthcoming album late last year. Ringleader of the Tormentors was being recorded in Italy with producer Tony Visconti, a heroic production man from the classic glam era. This news naturally sent Mozzlodites into a tailspin as thoughts of the great Your Arsenal sessions with glam compatriot Mick Ronson filled our experlty coiffed heads. 2004's You Are The Quarry was better than anyone had hoped, but could he still be on the upswing?
More news emerged. While some songs were still being written with Alain Whyte, Jesse Tobias, who replaced Whyte on the Quarry tour, was doing the bulk of the weightlifting (pleasing to me, since I have been saying the writing needs to be shaken up a bit). Ennio Morricone was coming in to conduct orchestra on a track, possibly with a children's choir. Special listening parties were earning raves, and these were followed by the a glimpse at the exceptional cover art:
And yesterday, the first track leaked. "I Will See You in Far Off Places" is the lead song on the record, and it just inexplicably appeared on the internet. Is this the marketing campaign? Next track 2, and then onward in order?
Regardless of how it got there, oh, my! Unless this is the fluke that a load of duds will follow after, Ringleader is going to be a corker. The tone of the song is operatic, with Morrissey stretching his voice as far out as it will go, singing in big open notes. The guitars swirl around in big swashes of noise, all twisted up with violins and Middle Eastern-sounding squeals. Lyrically, it's classic Moz, casting a cynical gaze over humanity and snatching some kind of interpersonal hope out of it. "The heart knows why I grieve/ And yes, one day I will close my eyes forever/ But I will see you, I will see you in far-off places." There is also a hint of the political, with references to America's murderous agenda used as an example of just how bad off our species has gotten.
The song builds to a maelstrom, almost literally, with sweeps of wind washing over as Morrissey stirs up the nostalgia with the sort of scatting la-da-da-da-dums we haven't heard since the first Smiths album. One can only guess what will come next.
Bring on April 4!
Current Soundtrack: Colin Meloy, "Tristan & Iseult (live @ the Birchmere);" Morrissey, the track in question; The Auteurs, No Dialogue with Cunts: The Auteurs Live at the London School of Economics '99
Current Mood: scrumptious
[to leave comments, click on the time-stamp below, then scroll down on the new page] – All text (c) 2006 Jamie S. Rich