I vividly remember a cloudy day in mid May 2004 when, after riding the bus to town, I picked up the first new album by Morrissey since “Maladjusted” was issued to critical distain some 3 weeks after my birthday seven years prior in 1997. The day “You Are The Quarry” was released, Massachusetts becomes the first U.S. state to legalize same-sex marriage.
It was said, following the poor showing of Maladjusted that Morrissey was on the nose and, according to many critics, on his way out. The irony of these “critical” views is that music journalists, for the best part are often prone to jumping on popular opinion bandwagons and possess and innate fear of voicing their own opinion for fear of being pushed to the outside.
Coming back to “You Are The Quarry” in 2004 now and, with a new album that hit the top of the UK charts, Mozza was back! Bigger and perhaps even better than ever before. His seminal works, “Your Arsenal” and “Vauxhall & I” were a big part of my high school life and helped me feel safe and comfortable when I didn’t fit in with the society I was residing in. So, having artists like Morrissey to look up to and admire was a big thing for me. Fast forward again to 2017 and once more, Morrissey is back with another studio album. This time around, he’s delivered another belter in the shape of “Low In High School”.
From my first impressions, Morrissey isn’t holding back with his personal attacks on the mainstream media, the British Royal Family and Police Brutality. You see, that’s the beauty of Morrissey. Love him or loath him, he’s never afraid to speak the truth and as you should know, the truth hurts which is why his long and winding list of detractors are intent of cutting him down at every opportunity.
My only disappointment with “Low In High School” is that there could have been a few more tracks tacked on. Why you ask? Well, it’s a cracking LP that deserves far more than just twelve cuts. Thankfully, there is sure to be a plethora of quality B-Sides on the horizon and bonus tracks along the way. Some of the early mainstream media reviews including the once acceptable but now deplorable NME, have slated “Low In High School” purely because the youthful and shall we say “hip” journalists the music press peddle out in 2017 just don’t get it. Come to think of it, most of them don’t get anything outside their world of fancifully named coffees and gluten free lunches. Still, that’s their problem and not ours because we are willing and able to embrace “Low In High School” for all its worth. And it’s worth many listens let me assure you right here and now.
Like its 2014 predecessor, “World Peace Is None Of Your Business” Morrissey punches from the hip and right from the moment when “Spent The Day In Bed” was dropped a few weeks ago, I knew we were in for more of the same. There are some serious attacks on the establishment so instead of trying to decipher and deliver depth and meaning to the tracks, I truly feel that it is best left for you to play the album and decide for yourself. The only advice I can give you is that “Low In High School” must be played at maximum volume.