Morrissey... "World Peace Is None Of Your Business"
It may not be Morrissey's most immediately accessible album.
The Morrissey derision for anything has been consistently outright and unswerving in its honesty. The conjecture mutually antagonistic. The militant lyrical venom, defiant in its contempt for whichever vile agenda it attacks, is unleashed with stabbing resentment. Such breathtakingly public vocal onslaughts, along with the music of course, have earned him the unconditional love and loyalty of half the world…while the other half unconditionally hate him.
His post-Smiths solo career has built itself soundly upon the past glories of them good old days and, in the main, has been done so on his own terms. With only the distraction of his autobiography bridging the 5 year drought since 2009’s Years Of Refusal his fans will be desperately hoping the 10th solo album of his career isn’t only worth waiting on but good enough to be worth the wait of waiting on…if you get me!
The musical maturity you’d expect from someone like Morrissey has continued to age gracefully and continues to be in possession of enough intuitive nous for his craft and at times a creative step forward can be heard pacing around somewhere in the orchestra of more familiar arrangements.
The title track is musically refined and lyrically acerbic - the sweet and the sour in a joined back-biting attack upon the government “world peace is none of your business, police will stun you with their guns…that’s what governments for”, he sings, in vicious objection.
The belligerently menacing guitar chords of Neal Cassady drops dead instigate and provoke for the entire song - a passive aggressive nod to the beat generation poet and his twenty year relationship with Allen Ginsberg “whippersnappers scurvy, urchin made of acne, get that thing away from me”, growls Morrissey before it halts it’s savagery in the middle for a puzzlingly random flamenco solo then reverts back to the skewed hard rock sound and marches onwards.
Atmospheric "Istanbul" is all chopped guitars and poetic storytelling with a scattered Middle East ambiance, fading chorus echoing and busy street noise that collectively drenches the entire song in a sound tapestry of muso-intellect orchestration.
For lengthy reflection comes the filmic 8 minute divulgence of “I’m Not A Man” developing itself through a distinguished Frank Sinatra croon it builds upwards as if heading towards an incendiary finale then pulls itself back downwards again, upwards and downwards it spirals beneath Morrissey’s lyrical listing of what he feels are the awful things ‘manliness’ brings…”wife beater vest, warring caveman, wise-ass, smart-ass, two fisted hombre, so very manly of you, you are the soldier.”
The Spanish/Latino influenced acoustic buzz of “Earth Is The Loneliest Planet Of All”, gutsy marching anthem “Staircase At The University” and short 2 minute trumpet/accordion jangle pop tune “The Bullfighter Dies” all jostle for as much of the glory as the rest of the album has quite clearly achieved. For a grand finale there is no need to be looking further than “Oboe”.
“Concerto”…’there’s a song I can’t stand and it’s stuck in my head’ he continually repeats above a backdrop of electronica beeping/serenading guitar and a pleading clarinet.
“World Peace Is None Of Your Business” may not be Morrissey’s most immediately accessible album but, after several listens, it grows on you just like the others did and it’s then that you realise…. it’s just as good as they are.