8 February 1986
Royal Court, Liverpool
Shakespeare's Sister
I Want The One I Can't Have
Vicar In A Tutu
Frankly, Mr Shankly
(Marie's The Name) His Latest Flame/Rusholme Ruffians
The Boy With The Thorn In His Side
Cemetry Gates
Nowhere Fast
What She Said
There Is A Light That Never Goes Out
Bigmouth Strikes Again
William, It Was Really Nothing
/Meat Is Murder
/Stretch Out And Wait
This show was part of a benefit called "From Manchester With Love" which featured other Mancunian bands New Order and The Fall. People who attended saw the live debuts of "Vicar In A Tutu", "Cemetry Gates" and "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out". These would be released four months down the road on the "The Queen Is Dead" album, just like "Bigmouth Strikes Again" and "Frankly Mr Shankly" as well as single "The Boy With The Thorn In His Side" which had been debuted the previous September on the Scottish leg of the "Meat Is Murder" tour.

Morrissey acknowledged the crowd's unfamiliarity with "Vicar In A Tutu" by following it with the announcement "This song - off our new LP 'The Queen Is Dead'..." Of course the "new LP" in question would not be released for another 4 months. This was followed by another introduction: "This is another one, which is... nothing to do with anybody that you might know... 'Frankly Mr Shankly'." Morrissey was probably referring to ex-Liverpool FC manager Bill Shankly when he said this. After the song Johnny teased the audience with the first notes of "What Difference Does It Make?", a song often requested but long dropped from the band's live sets. After "Cemetry Gates", which was also new to everyone, Morrissey introduced "Nowhere Fast" with the words "This is an old one that you all know..." Future classic "Bigmouth Strikes Again" was introduced as "... our new single" but it was still 3 months away from finding itself on record shop shelves. In the break before "William, It Was Really Nothing", Johnny teased the audience with the first notes from "This Charming Man".

On returning to the stage for the encore Morrissey enquired "Shall we do some more? (crowd cheers) Okay!... Try to enjoy yourselves, life is very long..." The man took many liberties with the lyrics of "Meat Is Murder". He sang "and do you know how sausages die" and the more common "who cares if animals die". He messed up the second to last line of the song and sang "Oh the meat that you sizzle as you flavour the flavour of murder". More interestingly, he mumbled unfamiliar lyrics in the outro to the song. Most of it is difficult to decipher from the available bootlegs, but a recurrent line anticipates a key lyric that would appear much later in the song "Unhappy Birthday": (approximately) "This is it, the dew in your eyes for the one that you left behind. In the car, with the trace of my hand. I'm the one that you left behind. It was not your mother, or father that you left behind. It's my heart, it's my heart, it's mine, the one that you left behind. It's my heart, I'm the one you left behind, it's mine, it's my heart, that you left behind, mine, that you left behind... tonight..."

There was no break between the latter number and "Stretch Out And Wait". For the first time Morrissey sang the alternate first verse of the latter number as it is heard on the "The World Won't Listen" compilation: "All the lies that you make up, what's at the back of your mind? Your face I can see and it's desperately kind, but what's at the back of your mind". During the recent Scottish tour Morrissey had been gradually modifying these lines from the initial version as released on the "Shakespeare's Sister" single, to something approaching the alternate version mentioned above.

"The Headmaster Ritual" was soundchecked, although it wasn't played on this tour or after.


There are three different audience recordings of the complete concert out there. The best of the three, also the scarcest, sounds particularly good. It is credited to recorder DJ but it would not be surprising to learn that it is Grant Showbiz's soundboard recording. Its only flaw is that it lacks the beginning of "What She Said", probably because that is where a C60 tape would have needed to be flipped over. The two other recordings sound reasonably good. The one brought to us by Soundsville Steve seems to be slightly superior to the other one which was taped by someone who goes under the name BigBopper. The bootleg circulated under the title "Liverpool Royal Court" seems to have been produced from the Soundsville recording, perhaps from a lower quality tape copy. The digital version of the latter title on the internet definitely is an inferior sounding version of the Soundsville master recording which is also available.

Approximatively 35 minutes of soundchecks are also available from bootleg traders and on the internet (recorder: Lee). Two different transfers of the same recording are out there. The best sounding one was mastered from a first generation cassette copy while a hissy inferior one was produced from a higher generation tape copy.


Do you have information about this concert? Or do you own an uncirculated recording of it? If yes please contribute and get credited.