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Monday, 23 October 2017

Day 2330 - Reviewing the Situation (Part 3)

The setting is a bar, somewhere in LA. Present are Jesse Tobias (Guitarist), Martin 'Boz' Boorer (Musician, second-hand record shop owner and wine maker), Michael Bracewell (former novelist), Gustavo Manzur (multi talented musician), Mando Lopez (bass player), and Morrissey (seminal artist). Matthew Walker (drummer) is in the toilet. It is present day.

Michael Bracewell picks up Mojo magazine from the table, and reads aloud the review for Low In High School.

BRACEWELL: The heading reads, "See me after class: B plus for music but C minus for attitude, says Pat Gilbert." He's then given it three stars.

MORRISSEY: It's no doubt as high as the poor sod can count. I blame his webbed fingers. It's a miracle in itself that he manages to type. Perhaps he dictates.

BOZ: Like you, Moz.

MORRISSEY: The difference being, Boz, that I dictate because I am a seminal artist of thirty five years standing in the music industry; and therefore have earned the right to dictate, whereas this clown has no choice other than to dictate, as a result of his mother breeding with her own brother. You really should't pick on his type, he can't help it.

BOZ: Eh? I didn't pick on him, I merely-

MORRISSEY: Enough, Boz. Carry on, Mikey.

BRACEWELL: "Intent and context are crucial to understanding any art"-

MORRISSEY: -He's off to a bad start there. Great art isn't to be understood, great art is to be misunderstood, and likewise, the great artist should also be misunderstood - I have been misunderstood my whole career. If old duck fingers wants an artist that he understands, then he should look no further than Dread Beerun; a man who paints by numbers. Do continue, Mikey.

BRACEWELL: "And so to the moral maze that is Morrissey's millennial solo career. Long cast, or posing as the persecuted outsider, stroke exile, the singer's increasingly bothersome public proclamations"-

MORRISSEY: -Only bothersome to those with an agenda-

BRACEWELL: -"have made his world-view ever trickier to fathom"-

MORRISSEY: -I don't think it's that tricky at all. If they would just listen to what I actually say, rather than listen to what the press say I say, then my world view is plain for all to see.

MANDO: I understand you Moz-boss.

MORRISSEY: Thank you, er...

MANDO: It's Mando, Moz-boss.

MORRISSEY: Yes, of course. Thank you, er, Dando.
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BRACEWELL: Shall I continue?

MORRISSEY: Please do.

BRACEWELL: "Chinese people are a sub-species on animal welfare issues"-

MORRISSEY: -Correct. Not tricky to understand that one.

BRACEWELL: -"London mayor Sadiq Khan is ineffectual as he eats halal butchered beings"-

MORRISSEY: -Nothing tricky about that one either.

BRACEWELL: -"Nigel Farage is a liberal educator"-

MORRISSEY: -Farage spelled out to everyone exactly what was going on in Brussels. If that isn't a liberal educator, then what is? You don't have to agree with Brexit to understand that the man was a liberal educator, but so often when people don't like or understand a narrative, they simply attack the narrator.

BRACEWELL: Quite so, Morr-ee-say, quite so. "The uneasy relationship between Moz's oft irksome utterances and his music; invariably nuanced and deeply humanistic, reaches a truly disorientating apogee on Low In High School"-

MANDO: -What is thees apple gee?

JESSE: I am thinking that what thees man eeze saying, is that Morr-ee-say confuses him, but he must be yet another of thees fucked-up retards, because just like you, Mando my friend, I am not confused in thee slightest by Morr-ee-say's outlook. He hates Trump, he hates meat eaters, he hates band members who take him to court and he hates the Mon arch.

BOZ: It's pronounced Mon ark.

JESSE: Why?

BOZ: What?

JESSE: Why is it that you are pronouncing it mon ark when it eeze spelt mon arch?

BOZ: I don't know, it just is.

JESSE: You Inglish and your funny lang which, it makes no sense.

BRACEWELL: "The album is a glistening and richly textured beast, alive with trademark galloping glam rock, ebullient chanson and haunting piano balladry, but the whiff of controversy is immediate: two titles, The Girl From Tel Aviv Who Wouldn't Kneel and stirring closer Israel, clearly reference his divisive new love affair with that titular Middle Eastern state. Alarm bells ring: is Morrissey here showing solidarity with the Jewish race to obviate accusations of racism or is he trying to wind up the Arab world?"

MORRISSEY: I hear no alarm bells. When I wrote a song about Dublin, Dundee, Humberside, did alarm bells ring then? No! This fool is clearly looking for alarm bells where there isn't even a clock.

BOZ: I didn't see any tits in Israel.

Morrissey and Bracewell look at each other and roll their eyes.

JESSE: I deed. There was this one woo man who-

MORRISSEY: -Do carry on, Mikey.

BRACEWELL: "Morrissey, arch as ever, knows that critics will conclude one or the other, or both; yet forensic scrutiny of the lyrics reveals The Girl From Tel Aviv is actually a damning condemnation of US foreign policy and its attacks on Muslim populations for their oil."

MORRISSEY: So, am I anti-American? Am I pro muslim? Do I hate jews? Do I love jews? What does this critic conclude, Mikey?

BRACEWELL: "You can't help concluding this is Morrissey presenting himself as alternative statesman, of the people, for the people."

MORRISSEY: Perhaps old webb features isn't as thick as he portrays, but I'm not just presenting myself, I am, and always have been, an alternative statesman of the people.

GUSTAVO: And a statesman for the anee-mals.

MORRISSEY: Quite, er...

GUSTAVO: It's Gustavo, Mister Morr-ee-say.

MORRISSEY: Yes, quite, Mustapha. I didn't notice you sat there, thanks for bringing over the drinks, but shouldn't you be getting back behind your bar, old son, I think you've got some customers waiting.

BOZ: Gustavo's with us, Moz. He's our keyboard player, the geezer who sings that end bit of Speedway.

MORRISSEY: I thought that was Solomon.

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BRACEWELL: Shall I read the final two paragraphs, Morr-ee-say?

MORRISSEY: No, I've tired of Giblet, and don't wish to hear any more of his ebullient chansonisms.

BRACEWELL: He does eventually end up calling the album "powerful".

MORRISSEY: Which it is, but just like the reviewer for Uncut, Giblet marks it down based on his dislike for my politics; even though once again he doesn't actually know what my politics are. These aren't album reviews, they are cheap-shot character assassinations. Have you got any reviews there from people who actually just want to review the record?

Bracewell picks up Q magazine.

BRACEWELL: How about Andrew Perry, writing for Q magazine? His headline is "A Class Above - Music's most contentious figure maintains his artistic standards". He gives it 4 stars.

MORRISSEY: He obviously has one finger more than Giblet.

At this point, Matthew Walker emerges from the toilet.

MATT: I'd give it five minutes....actually, better make that ten.
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