Monday, 20 June 2016

The Music - The Smiths belt out "Miserable Lie" Live in Madrid (1985)

please stay with your own kind and I'll stay with mine ....

Mozza and Marr and pals (that'd be Andy Rourke and Mike Joyce, of course) blast out a great live version of the ever frenetic and scathing "Miserable Lie."

This comes from a gig at Paseo De Camoens back on the 8th of May, 1985 - a gig captured in the bootleg "Spanish Sun Live In Madrid."

This was a free concert supported by the Madrid Townhall on the occasion of (the patron saint of Madrid) Saint Isidro's bank holiday. The socialist party was very interested in pop music and wanted to give a boost to a city that was culturally dead after 40 years of dictatorship. The Spanish were very welcoming and the concert was a big success. Morrissey was very energetic, he danced wildly but wasn't very talkative.

As in Barcelona two days earlier the Smiths played a 18 track setlist including the almost forgotten "This Charming Man" and the occasionally skipped "Barbarism Begins At Home".

"Miserable Lie" appeared on Side 1 of the band's seminal debut LP The Smiths in 1984.

A song that only Morrissey could write and a song similar in lyrical theme to "Pretty Girls Make Graves".

Built on some gorgeous Marr riffs - and some insane Mozza falsetto wails! - it's a song of confusion - "I need advice, I need advice."

A song about, perhaps, thinking you're of one sexual orientation and then realising you're not so sure and not wanting this distressing stuff brought up again

The line "a rented room in Whalley Range" refers to a dive in an area of Manchester about two miles southwest of the city centre where Morrissey used to cohabit with Linder Sterling (and the guitarist from her band, Ludus) for about a year when he was about 19. 

A song that has a clear lyrical nod to Mozz hero Oscar Wilde' with the line "you have destroyed my flower-like life" referencing "by his sweetness and goodness to her through the brief years of his flower-like life" from De Profundis.

And one laden with trademark witty barbed attacks ("stay with your own kind and I'll stay with mine") and moments of self deprecation ("I'm just a country-mile behind the whole world.")

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