Midnight Sun reader LiquorBoarding (the commenting name for city liquor board chairman Stephan Fogleman) happens to be a huge Morrissey fan. No, wait, make that a HUGE Morrissey fan.
This surprises me, because I thought Morrissey performs pretty much the same show every night.
Side note: The creepy thing about Morrissey is, the more you ignore him, the closer he gets.
Anyhow, I asked LiquorBoarding to write me a review, and lo and behold, he did.
Here it is ...
There's very little reason to leave Charm City these days, but if Morrissey's appearance last night in Durham, NC is a bellwether for his show at Warner Theatre on Saturday, I'd gas the car up for a trip down 95.
Morrissey, 49, was on five days rest as he took the stage at the nearly brand new Durham Performing Arts Center and he was in good spirits, too, joking about the fact that he had nothing bad to say about our new president and that it was "troubling."
Troubling for the fans was the cancellation of six of his first seven shows of this tour and an abbreviated set in Myrtle Beach, SC due to "illness." He did not disappoint them last night, making last night's show the de facto opener of a world tour that will stretch all over the United States, Europe and Russia.
Morrissey opened with a classic Smiths favorite, "This Charming Man," which has been updated with heavy bass and guitar by musical director Boz Boorer. (Prior to serving as musical director for Morrissey, Boorer wrote most of the songs for Siouxsie and the Banshees and Adam Ant. How's that for 80's street cred?)
The result on "Charming Man" and other songs is a harder and more danceable composition and clearly better than the many covers performed by younger bands. How many other artists have been around so long that they perform covers of their original work?
The show was very heavy on songs from the new album "Years of Refusal", including his instant classic performance of the aptly-titled "I'm OK by myself". He seemed to stretch his vocals the most on Years of Refusal's "Something is squeezing my skull" (about anti-depressants!) and mentioned that he needed to get that song out early in the night to hit the notes.
For the old timers, there were two more Smiths gems--"How Soon is Now" and "Ask".
Stage divers are commonplace at a Moz concert and last night was no exception. Morrissey was mugged a half-dozen times and this 40 year-old reviewer was able to make it on stage during the encore, "Irish Blood, English Heart".
Morrissey plays the National in Richmond, VA on Friday before taking the stage at the 2800-seat Warner Theatre in Washington on Saturday. Limited tickets (upper balcony) are still available in Washington. The 1500-capacity general admission show in Richmond sold out quickly in December. Moz turns 50 on May 22.
(Top photo by Fabio Lovino. Bottom photo by Travis Shinn.)