While it's beyond depressing to see one of one's musical icons not necessarily past their prime but rather, past their audiences prime, Morrissey was still lovely to witness in concert last night. His first visit to Utah in some 10 years or more, I don't understand why he couldn't have played at a more intimate, more likely sold out venue such as the Depot instead of the Ford E-Center which is in the middle of Western Valley. We were were forced to co-mingle with carbon based lifeforms of the proverbial American Valley, with their excess girth, scarecrow hairdids and cell phone holsters. It was as if Morrissey was just another stop on the all-you-can-eat buffet of life. During one of his first slower songs, the audience was so silent, veering on the edge of cold when Morrissey, in between lyrics quipped "Beautiful" to the dumbstruck crowd. Bizarre might have been more accurate.
Things did warm up and regardless of the carbies, I must comment on how truly gratifying it was to hear the Moz sing in person before I (or he) dies. His voice was much better than I ever imagined as he delivered a mix classic material, including a few Smiths songs with passionate precision. Additionally his band was really, really good at playing instruments, not to mention adorable in matching pink shirts. I also appreciated the deceptively basic set and lighting design which produced washes of color against a huge repeating backdrop of James Dean and also featured an array of giant industrial lamps with antique looking light bulbs. At another point in between songs Morrisey stopped and said something like, "So, this is it. I'm sorry to say, this is all we can do.", as if to suggest if you weren't there to hear his music for music's sake, then you came for the wrong reasons.
Related: "Morrissey, So Much To Answer For" Via Guardian UK
[Photo: Michael Goldenberg]