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FUV's New Dig: Morrissey

FUV's New Dig album spotlight: Morrissey

FUV's New Dig album spotlight: Morrissey

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World Peace Is None Of Your Business
Morrissey
Harvest Records

World Peace Is None Of Your Business is Morrissey's first studio album of new material since 2009's Years of Refusal, and it comes 26 years after Morrissey's first solo album, Viva Hate. It's a diverse album of songs that lyrically deal with personal assessments, character assassinations and political commentaries. Musically, it swings from ornately dense productions with bursts of guitar virtuosity and Spanish-tinged themes to slower, sparer observations. World Peace Is None Of Your Business demands your full attention as it welcomes you to the world according to Morrissey. He has a lot to say, and if you're not careful, he is persuasive enough to have you agreeing with him.

It's the political side of Morrissey's persona that appears first, with the marching, densely grand title track. While the song serves as a vehicle for his views, it also paints a bleak picture that there is no hope for positive change, so we shouldn't bother crying out for peace. That dark outlook on mankind is reiterated on the Latin-flavored "Earth Is The Loneliest Planet." In "Mountjoy," Morrissey uses the actual prison in Dublin as a setting to shine light on governmental injustices. "The Bullfighter Dies" is an ironic celebration of animal rights by rejoicing in the goring death of a bullfighter. Moving away from the topical is "Staircase At The University," an upbeat piece of literate British pop, featuring a splendid Spanish guitar solo. Here, Morrissey sings of a stressed student who throws herself down a flight of stairs to escape the pressures of keeping up with her studies. While the subject in "Staircase At The University" is a victim, Morrissey clearly sends out warnings about a heartless, greedy bride, the culprit in "Kick The Bride Down The Aisle." He even goes so far as to call her a cow.

Elsewhere, Morrissey stands in front of a conceptual mirror and comments on what he sees in himself. In the drawn-out, sometimes meandering "I'm Not A Man," his self-examination points out the ways he's out of step with the stereotypical characteristics of a modern man (while managing to rhyme "T-bone steak" with "cancer of the prostate'). In "Smiler With A Knife," Morrissey darkly reveals his emotional wounds.

World Peace Is None Of Your Business concludes with "Oboe Concerto." Only Morrissey would choose to end an album by singing, "There's a song I can't stand and it's stuck in my head."

It's not clear if this new album was influenced by his recently published memoir, Autobiography, but World Peace Is None Of Your Business serves as a nice addendum to this written work.