Amoeblog

Late to the Game As Usual, This Time With Morrissey

Posted by Miss Ess, November 23, 2007 11:31am | Post a Comment
Although I recently posted about seeing Morrissey shopping in our own store, mumorrisseysic-wise I have to admit I am completely late to the Morrissey game.  It's a bit scary to admit this amongst the musically literate crowd I hang within, but what the hell. 

It seems like I am just a little too young to have caught on to The Smiths, his earlier band, or to have heard any more of him than the single "The More You Ignore Me, The Closer I Get" on the radio in 1994.  In high school, when kids a few years older than me were clinging to their Morrissey CDs with dour faces, I was still bopping to The Beatles.  I guess I wasn't ready for it yet.  Fast forward to just a couple of years ago, and Morrissey suddenly had a new surge in popularity among the hipster crowd. At that point, I had well heard of The Moz, as he is known in certain circles, but this new over- the- top hipster cred popularity he had gained turned me off and I still never got around to listening to his music.

Finally, this last week I have picked up a Morrissey morrissey your arsenalCD-- Your Arsenal (1992)-- and listened.  One very strong sign of a great CD is when it's still very new to you but you can't get the songs out of your head and they seem to be following you around constantly -- when you lay your head on the pillow at night, when you are out grocery shopping, or waiting on the train.  This happened to me with Your Arsenal almost immediately.  One other thing that is exciting about Morrissey is how funny his music is!  I love that about him! What took me so long to embrace his music? One of the songs on Your Arsenal that is a favorite is entitled
"We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful"
.  Another fave is "You're the One For Me, Fatty".  His sense of humor is so dry I'm never quite sure if he's serious or not, but the fact that he's British cues me in to the fact that he's probably just being silly -- I believe we call that "tongue in cheek".  And how refreshing is that? -- silly, sad songs of yearning and intelligence.  I do see why all those dour high school kids saw Morrissey as the second coming.  I know everyone else figured this out over a decade ago, maybe even longer, but I am just a little bit slow here!  It's all kind of new to me.  Still, I am glad I have waited until it felt right to me to listen.  I think I'm going to end up listening a bunch more.  Maybe I will finally catch up to the rest of you!
 

morrissey! morrissey! morrissey!

Posted by Brad Schelden, September 27, 2007 11:51pm | Post a Comment
I don't even really know how to describe the feeling one gets after seeing a Morrissey show. You really have to be there to really understand it. It is a weird mix of feelings. After liking and listening to someone for 20 years or so you start to feel like you almost know them better than you know yourself. Morrissey is one of those artists that gets deep into his fans hearts and minds and stays there forever. He is like your best friend that never lets you down and is always there to get you through the rougher bits of life. All you needed was a Morrissey or Smiths album and you would be OK. I have seen him play many times over the years. But never in anywhere as small as the Fillmore. The Fillmore is a rather large venue. But for the Morrissey sized crowd, it is sort of small. It was perfect.

We actually got to the show early hoping we could get some of those seats up in the balcony. There is really only room for about 16 people up in the side balcony. So we were counting on the 100 or so people in front of us rushing to the stage downstairs. I ran up the stairs only to find the 2 people in front of me grabbing the last 2 seats. But then I noticed 2 large security types sitting in one of the sections. I asked them if they were going to stay there and they told me they were just checking out the crowd and would be leaving in a couple minutes. There are some crazy fanatical Morrissey fans and I think they were just trying to figure out the crowd for the night. They were probably counting the flowers and gifts in the audience and trying to figure out who would be the ones to try and jump on stage. So we got our seats and were actually going to eat at the show. I usually hate those people that eat at shows but in order to get there so early we sort of had to. But the amazing thing was that the whole menu was all vegetarian! Amazing! We vegetarians often have to search menus for the one garden burger or salad. Or maybe we can get the nachos with no meat. But there were like 10 things on the menu and they were all vegetarian. I was trying to figure out if Morrissey had requested some of the items or not. I got some potato latkes and they were delicious. I was just so excited I had to take the menu home with me. We hurried to finish our food before the show started though. I really didn't want to be one of those people that eats during a show. Even if it was just the opener who we had already seen two times before this.

Celebrity Sighting: Morrissey

Posted by Miss Ess, September 26, 2007 02:08pm | Post a Comment
morrisseyOne of the fun parts about working at Amoeba is the occasional celebrity sighting.  I thought I should tell y'all that yesterday around 6ish we had an extra special shopper in the store:  nonemorrissey other than Morrissey!  He's playing a bunch of shows at the Fillmore so it makes sense that he would pop into Amoeba for a tic with his manager in tow. 

There are certain musicians (like Robert Plant or PJ Harvey or Bjork) who have the uncanny ability to bring every last employee out of the woodwork and out on the floor.  Morrissey was one of these. It seemed like all of us employees emerged to take a gander at the Moz. 

Morrissey was wearing a plaid tweed cap.  He's a little shorter than I expected him to be, but that doesn't mean he was short!  He just always seems to be towering when I see him on TV.  He's still maybe just under 6 ft, but I always thought he was more like 6'4.   He was definitely spending time in the Celtic section!  And I wonder if it is revealing too much to say that he checked out his own section of the store too! 

From what other employees have been telling me, the Fillmore shows this week have been beyond stellar.  He's coming for you next, Los Angeles!  Check out his upcoming tour dates here.

morrissey

 

(In which Job wrestles with his subconscious mind and recommends an album.)

Posted by Job O Brother, June 30, 2007 08:17am | Post a Comment
It’s seven-thirty in the morning; I’ve just rolled out of bed after a weird and ultimately unhelpful dream about being accidentally tossed off the Thunder Mountain Railroad ride at Disneyland, after which I ended up drenched in water and yelling at Timothy Dalton, who was working as a security guard, for not believing that their stupid ride malfunctioned and landed me in a private parking garage.

Seriously. That’s what I was dreaming. Is it any wonder I’m awake an hour before normal? I mean, who needs that kind of crap? I am like, totally giving my subconscious mind the silent treatment today.

Two things are helping salvage my mood. One is writing this to you, of course. The other is listening to Jobriath.


This dude’s story is mostly tragic; one of the casualties of the music industry. He was glam at a time when glam had just started retiring. Bowie had already reinvented himself as a Zoot-suit wearing soul singer. Even so, Jobriath was promoted by Elektra Records as though his debut album would be more popular than The Beatles, and subsequently, God.

His half-naked frame was plastered all over cities at a time when we weren’t used to seeing such things. (I mean, nowadays it’s like, “Oh, a huge billboard of two, scantily-clad beefcakes frolicking in a pool together… in an advertisement for Toilet Duck.”) Jobriath’s first album was inescapable, and it hadn’t even been released.

So that, when it finally did hit the shelves, though it was critically acclaimed by many, it couldn’t live up to the hype that had come before it. Jobriath was eventually abandoned by his management and lived the rest of his life out in relative obscurity; his major legacy being an example to record companies on how NOT to handle a new act.

top 12 british albums of the early 90's...that need reissues!

Posted by Brad Schelden, June 27, 2007 07:30pm | Post a Comment
In my continuing series of lists, here is my next list. I was thinking again about how much I love the reissues. Those great 2 CD remastered deluxe versions. I get very excited when my favorite albums get the deluxe treatment. There has been a lot of deluxing over the last couple years of some of my favorites from the 70's and 80's.

But not much from that very important time in music which was the early 90's. I might be a bit biased about this period since this is also the period in which I graduated high school and started college. A period when my obsession with music and bands really developed. There have already been some great Slowdive and Pulp reissues, so those will not be on the list. The first two Ride albums "Going Blank Again" and "Nowhere" have also been reissued. But all these reissues are just imports, so I'm still hopeful they will be cheaper domestic versions out soon. There is a possibility that Morrissey will be going back to Warner! He is currently without a label again. Which is great news, since that is where his catalogue as well as the Smith's resides. It can't be too long until we see some great Rhino style Smiths and Morrissey reissues!

I originally was going to go through my CDs and just grab the ones that stood out from the 90s. When I was done, I looked at all the albums and realized all the bands were from England and all the albums were put out in the early 90's. I also realized these were the dirtiest and most used CD's in my collection. They have been through a lot and have been played many times and traveled all up and down the coast of California. It started out as 10 but quickly changed to 12. I could have easily went on and made a list of 25 but I had to stop somewhere. So here it is....My list of the top 12 british albums of the early 90's that I would like to see reissued...


Lush "Spooky" (1992) 4AD/Reprise

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