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The Messenger

Johnny Marr Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
Price: 9.80 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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The Messenger

Biography

Having initially found fame as guitarist and ‘curator’ of all things music with The Smiths, the ever pragmatic and effortlessly cool Johnny Marr did not take long to find his feet post Smithsdom. Having kick-started a (Britpop) generation of guitarists with his rickenbacker-esque fretwork in The Smiths, Johnny went on to find fame in super-group Electronic before eventually joining ... Read more in Amazon's Johnny Marr Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (25 Feb 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Warner Bros
  • ASIN: B00AG22JHY
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 14,876 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. The Right Thing Right 3:410.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. I Want The Heartbeat 2:470.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. European Me 3:560.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Upstarts 3:380.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Lockdown 3:580.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. The Messenger 4:290.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Generate! Generate! 4:210.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Say Demesne 5:370.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Sun & Moon 3:230.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. The Crack Up 3:520.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. New Town Velocity 5:110.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Word Starts Attack 3:290.99  Buy MP3 


Product Description

Product Description

Having returned to the UK from America specifically to write it, Johnny Marr has followed stints in both The Cribs and Modest Mouse with his solo record The Messenger. Recorded in both the UK and Berlin and mastered at the world famous Abbey Road studios in London, the record features The Smiths' iconic guitar-slinger Johnny on both guitar and vocal duties (amongst other things) and presents fans with his most accomplished works to date outside of band life.

BBC Review

Mutually admired by fellow guitarists and critics alike, Johnny Marr hasn’t rushed his first solo album since The Smiths’ demise – a split from which some fans are still recovering, unlike Marr himself, who has barely looked back.

From successfully varied collaborations with Electronic, Modest Mouse and The Cribs, Marr has also (amongst others) provided valuable contributions to Pet Shop Boys, Pretenders and The The.

He also fronted 2003’s Healers album, effectively a solo effort and a set of fairly underwhelming plod-rock. Fans will be hoping that The Messenger marks a return to his rare musical open-mindedness, not to mention way with a tune.

The northern soul stomp and soaring slide of The Right Thing Right declares that he is no longer ignoring his past. It pounds like Doves, albeit with Marr’s unmistakable guitar jangle. His vocals initially recall Liam Gallagher before giving way to shouting.

It’s quickly evident that Marr’s vocal compares poorly to the eloquence of his guitar work. Yet not everything works in that department, either. I Want the Heartbeat layers on decorative chops to disguise a pedestrian tune, badly.

The lighter touch of European Me recalls Electronic, but this invigoration is short-lived. The title track adopts a typically catchy Manchester swagger, but Generate! Generate! sounds entirely forced.

With expectations high indeed, it’s perhaps unfair to underline The Messenger’s shortcomings – and it’s worth noting that if the next Beady Eye album was to sound like this, it’d be celebrated as a considerable progression.

But muddy production does these tracks few favours. More upbeat numbers prevail, new-wave energy crackling; but lyrically Marr misfires often. One wonders how The Messenger could have been improved with a foil for Marr on board – a producer other than himself, perhaps.

Bonhomie emerges eventually. The Crack Up will prompt smiles, and the melody of New Town Velocity shimmers. Marr’s guitar work can be fascinating – but it’s forever shadowed by less-appealing vocal work.

In a year where the music industry is declaring guitar music a far-from-spent force, it’s a shame that one of the instrument’s leading lights lacks the shine on his own solo album that he’s successfully brought to other bands’ records.

--Tom Hocknell

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Messenger - delivers a modern-day classic! 26 Mar 2013
Format:MP3 Download|Verified Purchase
Godlike Genius Johnny Marr returns from a 10 year solo absence & lives up to his title with "The Messenger" which delivers in all aspects. The classic Marr guitar riffs, catchy melodies all encompassed by that retro indie/ modern sound ticks every box.

Personal favourite is "New Town Velocity" reminds me of New Order and similar bands of that era which is rare in today’s music. I can thoroughly recommend this album to all those who love Marr's previous work and can guarantee you won't be disappointed!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Effort 28 Nov 2013
Format:Audio CD
Having been part of Manchester's finest song writing duo, Johnny Marr's legacy is fitting, as is his recent NME Godlike Genius award. Having released `Boomslang' in 2003 under the banner of Johnny Marr and the Healers, The Messenger is seemingly his first actual solo album and in times where we are desperate for good guitar music, Johnny's done well.
The album opens up with `The Right Thing Right', which instantly gives the record an upbeat opener, and yes the man can sing. However, that "wooo!" could've had a little more velocity, Johnny...

Next is "I Want The Heartbeat" and the regular English Indie side starts to show slightly before a repeat chorus of the title. Then comes "European Me", with almost a Smiths-esque guitar intro, though the vocals don't immediately continue the immediate promise, but a pleasant chorus makes for enjoyable listening and the following verse continues that trend giving the song a boost.

The 2nd single from the album is up next with "Upstarts", and again it makes for enjoyable listening. It also makes sense that this was the follow-up single to `The Messenger', which follows the next track, `Lockdown', which itself highlights Johnny's vocal and abilities and of course his renowned guitar prowess. The title track however is the best song on the album and it is clear why this was the lead single from the record. Somewhat ignorantly of me, I was unaware that Johnny could sing prior to hearing this song a couple of months or so before the release of the album, having not been aware of The Healers or his live performances. The lyrics are limited here but this song didn't need an essay as the lyrics suffice perfectly with Johnny's vocals and harmonies as well as the instrumental element of the song.

Then we have `Generate! Generate!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Obviously don't miss it... but... 2 April 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I'm a big fan, and I really want to love this collection of songs, but in the end I think Johnny Marr needs an ace collaborator to deliver his best. There are some good tunes on this album, and if you like anything Johnny Marr ever did, you'll get your money's worth, but it just isn't on fire, and by the time I knew my way round, it had started to irritate me a bit. But I'll look forward to the next one.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good album that doesn't quite deliver. 25 Feb 2013
Format:Audio CD
When The Smiths split in 1987, front-man Morrissey released his first solo album Viva Hate within six months - it has taken guitarist Johnny Marr over two and a half decades to release his effort, The Messenger.

Granted, he meandered around the indie scene, dipping into projects that interested him, including Electronic, Modest Mouse, and, most recently, The Cribs, but the prospect of a solo album from the man himself is something that many fans of The Smiths have been anticipating for a long time.

The Messenger bursts opens with the indie stomper `The Right Thing Right'. The first thing that strikes you about this song is its vitality - this doesn't sound like the afterthought of a veteran musician looking to cash in on his legacy, but rather feels like something quite fresh and exciting.

I Want the Heartbeat' is dark and urgent, with off-key guitar riffs that seem to swirl with twitchy paranoia around the edges of the mix colliding with an intense driving bass-line that could have been lifted from one of the Libertines' more punky numbers. The mood is lightened by `European Me', a track held together by an infectious pop vocal melody that could easily find itself on a New Order record - this isn't a criticism, Marr's delivery is excellent.

`Upstarts' is rather dull and marks a low point on the album with its verse that seems to plod along aimlessly and a chorus that echoes that disco-tinged indie that was all the rage in 2005. Things improve slightly with `Lockdown', but again the music is incredibly generic and doesn't do anything to showcase Marr's talent as either a guitarist or songwriter.

The title track The Messenger has been a mainstay on BBC 6 Music's playlist since the end of last year and is an excellent song.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Get the Message 28 Feb 2013
By mozstar
Format:MP3 Download|Verified Purchase
There is a definite sonic sound to the album poaching inspiration from Electronic, and his two most recent collaborations with Modest Mouse / The Cribs.
25 years to produce a solo album what`s that about, not sure if the album is a stomper, but a good album never the less, the lead single The Messenger being a top tune.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Reluctant frontman 9 Feb 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
An admirable chap, by all accounts, and a truly brilliant guitarist, even after however many years it is. Some people have the ego, the front and the peculiar talent to front a band, to sing the songs, guide the ship and take the praise / blame / responsibility (and obviously that group of people includes morrissey) Johnny Marr has never been that sort of person, he's always looked to bury himself in a collective, to be the supreme group player. That's fine but it does mean that the songs lack that certain something. Nothing jumps out and grabs you. The arrangements, the playing are great, it's an album I enjoyed, but it's not as good as the man. Time passes, the music plays and when it's over there isn't a huge amount to remember.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars There's a lot more to this than the quintessential Marr sound...
Marr has a definite sound: there are chord progressions, chiming sounds, that whole rhythm-as-lead thing, that are unmistakably him. And they're all there, on The Messenger. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Martin P
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
Superb album, Marr employing the wall of sound. I am a lifelong Smiths fan and now I at least know how some more Smiths songs would have sounded.
Published 3 months ago by martyw1971
4.0 out of 5 stars Feelgood album
Lots of guitars great sound catchy tunes. Not surprisingly Johnny's voice is better on record than it is live. Recommended
Published 3 months ago by Clarryman
4.0 out of 5 stars The Messenger
Brought the CD after seeing him perform live in a Nottingham ! Gots some great tracks , maybe one or two weak ones but a good listen
Published 3 months ago by Forest
5.0 out of 5 stars Best present
Was bought for my dad as a gift. He loved it! Would recommend if your into johnny marr. Reasonable price too.
Published 5 months ago by nanny
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Living Legend. Love every song with every listen. Everyone should own this album, it's great. Amazing guitarist. What more can I say!
Published 6 months ago by Purpleander
4.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant album
So why did it take so long Johnny? If it is good enough then it is worth waiting for then I guess? Good to see the great man and on the road again!
Published 6 months ago by Steve Jennings
4.0 out of 5 stars Good album!
Very good album from a Smith's legend also brilliant live real music lives on! voted in the top 20 guitarist's of all time and after listening to this you'll see why!
Published 6 months ago by Craig Harrison
4.0 out of 5 stars marr vellous
i dont normally buy new cds any more other than remasters of my favorite bands but i made an exception for this. Read more
Published 7 months ago by graham watson
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding
A superb collection of tracks from Johnny Marr , thoroughly recommended. You can almost hear The Smiths in some of the songs!
Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
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