22 January 2008|
London (UK), Roundhouse
The Last Of The Famous International PlayboysThis concert went down quite well but was perhaps slightly less appreciated than the first night of Morrissey's residency at Camden's Roundhouse. The man was in high spirits and he didn't seem to be having throat problems like he had the night before. With the exception of the first few rows, the audience was overall glued to the floor, but still appreciative and it broke into chants of Morrissey's name now and then. No one made it on stage.
The setlist was shuffled but its content remained almost the same. "Tomorrow" and "One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell" returned, while "Life Is A Pigsty" and "The National Front Disco" were dropped. The latter title was actually on the setlist after "Billy Budd", but Morrissey decided at the last minute to skip it.
As he entered stage Morrissey greeted the audience by saying "You have your teeth very firmly in the bosom of Camden Town!" Besides the usual lyric changes in "How Soon Is Now?" he also sang "I am human and I need to be loved So what! So what!", "you can meet somebody who actually stands you" and "look at this ugly face, all my hope is gone". After the song he joked "I realize that I'm only here because of my looks (crowd laughs)... What else?" After "I Just Want To See The Boy Happy" he said something that sounded like "Every song, I don't observe things..." then introduced the next planned number with the line "Last night I thanked Radio 2 and XFM for being the hippest two radio stations in the country (crowd cheers)... Why? Because, amazingly, through no fault of ours, they're playing our new single... There is a God, and that's how people grow up..." The song in question was of course "That's How People Grow Up" and for some reason (perhaps because the show was recorded for XFM) it exceptionally didn't feature the wailing intro by Kristeen Young.
Before going into "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before" Morrissey asked the audience "Anyone going to the Speed bar? Think about that, what does that mean?... What?..." Over the closing bars of the song he shouted "Some! Of! Us! Is! Turning nasty!", something which was standard on the recent American dates, but which he hadn't really done so far in 2008. After the song the audience broke into a chant of his name. He basked in it for a short while, then introduced the next planned number by joking "By the way, this is a very passionate love song... 'Something Is Squeezing My Skull'..." After that song he proceeded with the introduction of his band: "Initials B.B., Brigitte Bardot? No, it's Boz Boorer... it's very easy to make the mistake... on the bass gueetah, Solomon Walker... on the drums, his (?) twin, Matt Walker... on electric guitar, the lovely Jesse Tobias... our resident genius Kristopher Pooley... and I am somebody who you'd quite like to meet in a dark alley... or not..."
Morrissey changed a line in "Why Don't You Find Out For Yourself" to "Some men here, they have a special interest in that thing your career". After the song he said "I think you'll be very surprised to know that there is a contingent here from Korea who came just for this, and they sent me a gift, a letter that said, would I come and sing in Korea and... absolutely not!" In live performances of "Tomorrow" at the time Morrissey often changed a line to "through this useless body" or "through this hopeless body", but on this date he sang "through this wretched body". He also changed lines in that song to "and if it does come, will I still be selling good?", "all I ask of you is one pathetic thing that you'll never do" and "I will tell everybody", and adlibbed many more minor changes.
The latter number was very well received and following its performance Morrissey had to tell the audience "Now steady on..." He then took a gift handed to him and as he read the note attached to it he went "Blah-blah-blah, blah, blah, blah-blah-blah, blah, blah...", then carefully placed the gift on the drum riser. After new composition "One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell" he told the audience "That song was called 'One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell' and it's from our - good God - new album,yes! One more, one more to ruin down your life with (crowd laughs)... you encourage me!" Following "The World Is Full Of Crashing Bores" he discussed American politics with the audience: "On the subject of crashing bores, have you heard that Hillary Clinton has changed her name to Billary? Because she thinks she can have all her husband's votes and support da-da-da just because she was (?)'s wife... God bless Barack Obama!"
Exceptionally in "Stretch Out And Wait" Morrissey switched to the song's alternate intro (as heard in the version released on the album "The World Won't Listen"), but he actually twisted it slightly: "Your face I can see, and it's really not bad". Besides the usual lyric changes in that song he also sang "let your skinny body lie down, lie down" and "Will the world end in the daytime, I really hope so... or will the world end in the night time, I really hope so..." Then after the line "and is there any point ever having children", instead of handing the microphone to a fan for an answer, he just moaned "nnooooooo..." The next planned number was briefly introduced with the words "Another song from our new long player, 'All You Need Is Me'." At the end of that one Morrissey pretended to sneeze.
After "The Loop" Morrissey answered shouts of his name with "Yes what now? I'm not gonna go anywhere!" He then handed the microphone to regular irregular Mel who said something about Ativan, then added that he was her drug of choice. Morrissey muttered dismissively, "Americans..." then after a pause added "...just kidding." He distractedly reversed the first two lines of "I'm Throwing my Arms Around Paris": "In the absence of your touch, and in the absence of your love". After "Sister I'm A Poet" he self-deprecatingly said "I won't be offended if you don't like it..." then introduced the next song with "...and yet, Mama, 'Mama Lay Softly On The Riverbed'..." After the latter number someone screamed "I love you!" and he retorted with a quick "For what!?"
Besides the usual changes in "Billy Budd" Morrissey also sang "Do you think we really should?" After the song he went to Boz and told him to skip the next planned number "The National Front Disco" and go straight to "Death Of A Disco Dancer". When he turned back to the crowd he asked "Did you hear that? What? What? I'm from Dublin!" His final words to the audience before going into the encore were "Thanks for giving us another fantastic night, I will see you in my dreams..."
Two different subsets of this concert were broadcast online, respectively by XFM Manchester and XFM Scotland. The latter station's broadcast featured most of the set in proper order: "How Soon Is Now?", "I Just Want To See The Boy Happy", "That's How People Grow Up", "Stop Me If You Think You've Heard This One Before", "Something Is Squeezing My Skull", "Why Don't You Find Out For Yourself?", "Tomorrow", "All You Need Is Me", "Billy Budd", "Death Of A Disco Dancer", "Irish Blood, English Heart" and "First Of The Gang To Die". The XFM Manchester broadcast featured a shorter set, completely resequenced: "The Last Of The Famous International Playboys", "I Just Want To See The Boy Happy", "Why Don't You Find Out For Yourself?", "How Soon Is Now?", "Death Of A Disco Dancer", "Irish Blood, English Heart", "All You Need Is Me", "That's How People Grow Up", "First Of The Gang To Die", "Something Is Squeezing My Skull" and "How Soon Is Now?".
Thanks to recorder Steve from Soundsville International an audience recording of the complete set has also made it into the hands of bootleg collectors. The sound quality is good, perhaps slightly muffled. Many collectors prefer this audience recording to the better sounding webcast because it is complete and in proper order, and because the webcast has very loud and irritating station ID's and/or DJ banter between every song.
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