Category Archives: Music Review

Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 10: WORLD PEACE IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS (2014)

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World Peace Is None of Your Business – The album that this entire series has been leading up to, and one that was long-awaited after another brief period of stasis in Morrissey’s musical output.

In such a position and after revisiting all of the singer’s work, one can’t help but try to compare this new collection of material with each of its counterparts that preceded it whether it be fair or not.

And through this lens, it is surprisingly, and refreshingly, rather difficult to pin World Peace down beneath a specific framework.

At some points, the brooding echoes of Ringleader of the Tormentors peak through (the title track and “I’m Not a Man”) as do the pop flourishes of You Are the Quarry (“Kiss Me a Lot”) and the confessional musings of Vauxhall and I (“Earth Is the Loneliest Planet” and “Oboe Concerto”), but at the same time, none of these past releases can some up the range of the new record.

World Peace is a piece of work that captures many of the themes that pervade through the whole of Morrissey’s discography such as romantic longing, world-weariness, and cynicism coupled with a familiar sonic edge and beauty while also applying these in a new manner so that none of these sentiments feel tired or played-out. In fact, with the new album’s sound and a flirtation with a kind of quasi Spanish / Flamenco tone, much of the bleak material feels energized in a similar way that You Are the Quarry achieved after the singer’s first major recording hiatus.

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And perhaps that is a fitting way to summarize the whole of Morrissey’s body of work – One is sure to find a vein of similarity that runs through each of the man’s albums, and yet he has never made the same album twice. And while some of these entries debatably worked better and with more commercial success than others, the “best” entry in this discography very much depends on one’s disposition.

Perhaps you’re more inclined to go with the “classic” feel of Viva Hate. Or maybe you’re into the glam rock edge of Your Arsenal or the experimental prog-rock of Southpaw Grammar. Each one easily has a case to be made for it once it has found its audience.

Aside from being an engaging batch of new songs, World Peace is a particularly poignant addition to Morrissey’s solo oeuvre because of how it unwittingly celebrates everything fans have come to hope for from a Morrissey record while also making each of these aspects seem brand new and just as empowering as they ever were.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

~ Stephen (@StephenThePM)
thepapermasque@gmail.com

Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 9: YEARS OF REFUSAL (2009)

In anticipation and celebration of the upcoming release of Morrissey’s latest album, World Peace is None of Your Business, we will be taking a look at each of the singer’s solo records as a part of our third musical retrospective series.


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With his first two works of music in the new millennium, Morrissey created two juxtaposing masterworks – one of reinvigorating pop music (You Are the Quarry) and the other being a sweeping romantic lament (Ringleader of the Tormentors) – a kind of reiteration on the succession of Your Arsenal and Vauxhall and I earlier.

And as unsympathetic as it may be, these previous achievements only leave one guessing how the next piece of work will stand in comparison to these flashes of brilliance. Will it be another stroke of genius? Will it be a grandiose misstep? Or will it just sort of fall in the middle? Continue reading Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 9: YEARS OF REFUSAL (2009)

Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 8: RINGLEADER OF THE TORMENTORS (2006)

In anticipation and celebration of the upcoming release of Morrissey’s latest album, World Peace is None of Your Business, we will be taking a look at each of the singer’s solo records as a part of our third musical retrospective series.


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With You Are the Quarry in 2004, Morrissey effectively breathed new life into his solo career with an effort that was both a bright, exuberant return to form as well as a step forward into a more mature sound. But how does one top such a monumental release?

The answer to this question came in 2006 when Ringleader of the Tormentors, Moz’s eighth studio record, hit the market. Continue reading Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 8: RINGLEADER OF THE TORMENTORS (2006)

Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 7: YOU ARE THE QUARRY (2004)

In anticipation and celebration of the upcoming release of Morrissey’s latest album, World Peace is None of Your Business, we will be taking a look at each of the singer’s solo records as a part of our third musical retrospective series.


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As described in the previous review of Maladjusted, although the 1997 release received its share of negative feedback, it contains some brilliant unheralded material. The overarching flaw with the record may stem from its apparent tone of general world-weariness.

Of course, world-weariness is no foreign topic in Morrissey’s body of work, yet in the presentation of Maladjusted, this sense of gloom tends to seep through the instrumentation and production to the point where the music sometimes feels inherently tired, grey, and humorless.

But perhaps it is thanks to this commercial and critical low point and the resulting seven-year dry spell in new recordings that we reach what one might call a renaissance period in Morrissey’s career beginning with one of the singer’s most celebrated (if not THE most celebrated) works to date, You Are the Quarry.
Continue reading Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 7: YOU ARE THE QUARRY (2004)

Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 6: MALADJUSTED (1997)

In anticipation of the upcoming release of Morrissey’s latest album, World Peace is None of Your Business, we will be taking a look at each of the singer’s solo records as a part of our third musical retrospective series.


Image courtesy of Wikipedia

Once again, our series reaches an entry by Morrissey that, over the years, has become known as one of the singer’s lesser pieces of work.

This time, the record in question is 1997’s Maladjusted. But what is it about Morrissey’s sixth album that was such a turn off, and does this album’s distinction as a misstep hold any merit?

Considering the noticeable shift in tone presented the last album, Southpaw Grammar, one might expect Maladjusted to come as a welcomed return-to-form. Indeed, much of the work comprised on this tracklist seems to be a call back to the confessional style achieved in the masterwork of Vauxhall and I. Continue reading Morrissey Retrospective Series – Part 6: MALADJUSTED (1997)