Since his days with the Smiths , the warbling baritone crooner and shrilly irritable lyricist Morrissey has found heart and humor in the repetition of his central now, right-winged talking points. It could be a famed mix of sexual deprivation and longing, and the isolation that comes with placing oneself on the shelf. It could be his anti-establishment rants against Queen, country pick one , meat eaters and leather wearers. Why, guts, guile and barely controllable emotion.
Album Review: Morrissey’s ‘California Son’
Morrissey has always worn his influences on his black-on-the-outside sleeves. For as much as he crowed about the New York Dolls and the Cramps in his youth, his music both with and without the Smiths has reflected more erudite lyricists with an overall lighter musical touch. For California Son , the Pope of Mope has picked 12 lilting tales of injustice and unrequited love by some of his favorite artists and re-orchestrated them for his voice, improving some and turning others into head scratchers.
I know he had done better gigs, but this was one of my first. For an awkward, bookish kid from Midlands suburbia, it was an electric baptism of noise, drama and devotion. Shirts were ripped from his sweat-soaked body and rage, wit and yearning arced from his lips. A trick he went on to repeat for the rest of the tour. Most other critics have done that — you can go Google. A pain in the arse politically and professionally, then. I put it on this morning and, oh God, I still love his voice. The gorgeous, wounded soar and swoop of it.
California Son is the twelfth solo studio album by English singer Morrissey. Recorded in , the album was produced by Joe Chiccarelli , a frequent collaborator of Morrissey. In September , photographs of Morrissey and American singer-songwriter LP were uploaded to the former's website Morrissey Central with a caption mentioning a "new album" and crediting LP as a collaborator on two tracks. The release date of 24 May and the artwork were revealed in February The setlist included material from California Son. On Metacritic , which assigns a normalised rating out of to reviews from mainstream publications, California Son received an average score of 57 based on 15 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews". In a positive review for The Telegraph , Neil McCormack rated California Son four out of five stars and described it as "sumptuous", writing that "if a great cover version should reveal new dimensions in both song and singer, then this album is filled with them". Club gave the album a B rating and wrote that "without the baggage of his political views—which is where the letter grade on this review comes from— California Son would be a worthy addition to a mostly stellar catalog, offering insight into a great singer and lyricist's taste and breathing new life into mostly forgotten songs", adding that "his music taste is impeccable".