2 July 2007|
Vienna (VA), Wolf Trap
The Queen Is DeadMorrissey's return to the stage after three and a half cancelled dates went down surprising well. The man was in very good spirits, quite physical and talkative. He spoke to the crowd between every song, or almost. He still had a bit of trouble with his voice, but nothing major. The band was also at their best and overall the audience left very happy. The stage set-up was very favourable to stage invasions, but security was very brutal and only two fans made it on stage. The first one did it during "How Soon Is Now?", he was slammed into the stage and choked by a security guard before being dragged off. After that only one other person dared to follow, and she did it during the encore.
A 21-song set was planned, with no surprise, but perhaps because he wanted to spare his voice two songs were dropped at the last minute: "I've Changed My Plea To Guilty" and "In The Future When All's Well".
When he entered stage Morrissey greeted the audience with the line "By Grand Central Station I saw down and I wept", which was a reference to two different things: a book he loved and had been inspired by for some of his lyrics, and the recent cancellation of the long-awaited concert planned a few days earlier at the Madison Square Garden in New York. He addressed the subject of his recent illness after "You Have Killed Me" when he said "As some of you may know, the lungs I'm using tonight are not mine, but I'm very grateful... and it wasn't really that I had the flu or anything, the problem was I, I'd seen Fox News and the poison came from the screen, engulfed me, Jesus, the horror..." In "Disappointed" he slightly extended a line to "young boy, I wanna help you, if I can".
At some point Morrissey said that the venue shouldn't be called the Wolf Trap and suggested that the Bush Trap would make a nice alternative name. He asked a few times if he sounded okay, and the audience always cheered positively. One instance of this happened after "Ganglord" when he asked "I'm really not singing too bad am I?... somebody answered back..." Following "The National Front Disco" he introduced his musicians: "This ravishing boy band behind me are... are... are who? Who can they possibly be? Well... Boz Boorer... on the bass guitar, Stosh At the beginning of "Let Me Kiss You" Morrissey sang the slightly different "There's a place in the sun for anyone who has the nerve to chase one". "Girlfriend In A Coma" was preceded with the brief introduction "So, everybody has a past..." That song was particularly well received and a surprised Morrissey greeted the crowd's reception by exclaiming "Wow! Thank you..." Following "Everyday Is Like Sunday" he asked his favourite fan "Julia, can I face the world? (she answers something, he says something undecipherable and asks again) Can I face the world? (she tells him that he can conquer the world)..." Morrissey then took a cd handed to him by someone nearby and asked "For me? Homemade? Beautiful... Is it you? Yes?..." He then walked to the drum rise to put the cd aside and have a drink of water and while his back was turned some people in the audience laughed and cheered, which prompted him to turn around and ask "What just happened? (fans laugh, Morrissey grins funnily) I was serious... help me!"
Morrissey had trouble reaching some of the high notes in "The Boy With The Thorn In His Side" and it was obvious that he was not all recovered from his recent illness. The song was still very well received and he told the audience that they were "very generous, thank you..." After "I Will See You In Far Off Places" he probably felt fans were cheering his efforts to perform more than the performances themselves, and deadpanned "I think I've got the sympathy vote... I'll take it..."
As a long introduction to new composition "That's How People Grow Up" Morrissey discussed recording the song for David Letterman's show the week before. He started by asking the fans if they had watched "...the David Butterball show... you may have seen him handing out his spare ribs... if only they were his... we'd all be so much happier I think... but Julia, I didn't see that happen, 'cause I was locked in a little room... and of course if I'd seen it, I would have wept bitterly, but done nothing about it... (?) but on the David Butterball show we sang this here song which (gets interrupted)... people are so nice... and it's called, it's called (waits for people to shout title).... it's called... it's called 'That's How People Grow Up'..."
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