By 1995, it could be said that Morrissey needed little introduction. Filmed over two nights on the 'Vauxhall and I' tour, 'Introducing Morrissey' showcases Morrissey and his band at one of their, admittedly many, creative peaks. That some fans consider this tour to have been one of his finest perhaps hints at the quality of the material herein.

The footage included on the 'Introducing Morrissey' release may not be entirely new to those fans with a healthy collection of bootlegs, but its digital release is a welcome addition to the ever-swelling corpus of Mozibilia. Also - and this may simply be a personal foible - I always think it’s nicer to have a nicely packaged original release in one’s hands rather than a grubbily photocopied CD case with handwritten tracklistings and inferior sound quality.

Morrissey aside, the true star of this release is the material. Any set-list featuring five tracks from 'Vauxhall and I' and three from 'Your Arsenal' is bound to be a winner. Opening with an energetic reading of 'Billy Budd', the film segues breathlessly into 'Have-A-Go Merchant'. Now, I’ve been a Morrissey fan for decades, and, while I had always enjoyed both songs, it was not until I heard the gutsy, live readings from this release that I afforded them equal status with Morrissey’s contemporaneous releases, such as 'National Front Disco' or 'Glamorous Glue'.

To single out any track as a highlight would seem churlish, as each and every track soars on its own merits, but, for me, the two true standouts are 'Jack the Ripper' and film closer (and perennial favourite of mine) 'Speedway'. To stand out in a set as crowded with excellence as this is indeed an achievement.

Morrissey’s career has been one of highs and lows, and, while recent releases such as his (not quite) warts and all – should that be COURTS and all? – 'Autobiography' and the recently released (and, frankly, stunning) 'World Peace is None of Your Business' have served to prove that there’s life in the old dog yet, it seems more likely that we should be expecting less new material from Morrissey and more (officially) unreleased material from his past. If 'Introducing Morrissey' is an indication of this trend, I think that us Mozaphiles have a great many treats to look forward to.

Furthermore, if one is to take the title of this DVD literally, I can think of no better introduction to the world of Live Moz. Except this year’s forthcoming tour, naturally…







Related Links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morrissey
http://www.morrissey-solo.com/
http://www.true-to-you.net/
https://twitter.com/morrisseysolo
https://www.facebook.com/Morrissey


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