I didn't plan on this. I'm cycling past the Troxy and there's a long queue so I stop and ask someone who's playing, they say Morrissey and offer me a ticket. I used to like The Smiths, I wonder what The Troxy looks like inside, I have nothing to do, I lock up my bike and say ok.
After getting in I realise I should've waited outside for a while 'cause now I'm stuck in here for ages. I get a three pound fifty bottle of bud in a little plastic cup and realise I won't be able to get pissed while I wait. The support act finally comes on and I realise I may have made a huge mistake. An irritating showtune voice gogo girl and a band made up of fucking Gaultier models. Does that sound any good to you? Because that sounds fucking shit to me. The preening and prancing about is as utterly fucking terrible as the utterly fucking terrible music. You can occasionally see up the girl's skirt a bit, but it's simply not enough to make up for the soulless bullshit they call a show. Doll and the Kicks they're called. This years 'ones to avoid'.
Finally, after I go off to hide in the smoking area for a year, Morrissey strolls on and opens with a big Smiths tune. The familiar sound of This Charming Man brings a big grin to my face and manages to convince me that ok maybe I didn't make a mistake. It's maybe a testament to Morrissey's lyricism that I enjoy a lot of the solo stuff I've never heard before purely on the basis of his vocals, but it's still the Smiths' stuff that makes up the vast majority of high points. How Soon is Now? is particularly outstanding.
The set wears on a bit, the second half considerably weaker than the first, but I amuse myself by looking at all the fans. Morrissey fans all look like Morrissey wearing a Morrissey t-shirt. It's great. They're also either all old, fat and gay or young, skinny and undecided. At one point he sticks the mic in the crowd and this guy grabs it and shouts, emphatically, Mancunianly and, I think, through tears "Morrissey we love you, we've come all the way from Manchester again to see you and we will follow you everywhere you go because we love you Morrissey". It's great, I mean, it's hilarious. I'm enjoying the gig but it hasn't turned me into a teenage girl at an NKOTB concert. Grown men crying. Brilliant.
After his encore Morrissey rips his shirt off, wipes it all over his large sweaty trunk and lobs it into the crowd. They love it, obviously, and I like it because it makes it clear I shouldn't wait around for a second encore. As I leave the support act are trying to give their CDs away in the foyer. No one wants one. Because they are shit.
And for all those crazy obsessive Morrissey fans that may stumble upon this review, here's a setlist: