Morrissey, Leeds First Direct Arena

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Every time I see Morrissey play I think it will be the last time, and yet after twenty five plus concerts here I am again finding myself excited at seeing this legend on stage …..

maybe Morrissey’s only happy when he’s up on the stage?

Waiting in the cramped, narrow pit in front of the stage watching the obligatory thirty minute film bombarding the audience with iconic cultural images from the past, I still get butterflies in my stomach at the thought of seeing Morrissey again!

The great man bounds on stage to a cover of an old Elvis Presley B side You’ll Be Gone with the line “lets make this night a night to remember”, hopefully an indicator of how tonight is going to pan out. Next up is I Wish You Lonely the first of eight songs from the new, rather good album, Low In High School and then its Suedehead the first of two songs from the classic Viva Hate album.

From the reaction of the crowd to Suedehead its clear what tunes they want to hear, but whilst Jacky’s Only Happy When Shes Up The Stage keeps the mood going, Home Is A Question Mark and the sombre Munich Air Disaster 1958 along with film footage of the tragic Busby Babes quieten things down somewhat.

The first Smiths song of the evening is I Started Something I Couldn’t Finish,is a lot heavier than the original, but nevertheless its what most people are here for and once again the crowd respond enthusiastically.

This then is the way the evening goes, new material interspersed with classics from the past and the odd cover almost thrown in to keep the audience happy, which is a shame as some of Low In High School is as good as anything Morrissey has written. Highlights for me were a great version of Jack The Ripper a storming version of How Soon is Now and what must be the best pop song of the last twelve months Spent The Day In Bed.

For me this was a classic Morrissey performance. Happy to be performing new material, he was witty, funny and energetic, resigned to indulge the audience’s barracking and clearly in much better health than when I last saw him in 2016.

Morrissey sends the crowd home happy with two final classic songs, Every Day Is Like Sunday and Irish Blood, English Heart and apart from the usual fight over his thrown shirt, its a muted dismissal.

Morrissey and his music have moved on but unfortunately some of his audience haven’t.

We rate:
5.0 rating

That my first ever gig was The Who at Belle Vue which shows how long I've been going to gigs. However despite always being interested in photography it's only in the last few years I've been fortunate enough to shoot gigs.

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