25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
The most underated Morrissey album is a real treat,
By A Customer
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This review is from: Southpaw Grammar [Us Import] (Audio CD)
If you've looked up this album then you most likely know that it'sa mid 90's solo album by Morrissey, that he used to be in the Smiths and that he has written some fantastic lyrics in his time. If you know all this then you are most likely a Morrissey fan, and if so you really should own this CD. Not because you are a Moz crazed completist but because it really is a good album. If you are new to Morrissey, get Vauxhall & I, then come back for this.
Saddly Southpaw Grammer often gets a bashing from critics, Boz Borer (Moz guitarist) described it as "an album to far" and even Morrissey slated the artwork in an Uncut interview. It should be noted that some strange choices were made during Southpaws recording: instead of a 'full album' there are only 8 tracks, the excellent Nobody Loves Us and You Must Please Remeber were thrown away as Bsides on the Dagenham Dave single, potential stand out track The Operation is bogged down with a two and half minute drum solo and lastly, the great Morrissey 2 minute slice of indie pop is thrown out and replaced with two 10 minute rock epics that bookend the album. It's hard to see why these things were done.
But.... it comes from the same production team as 'Vauxhall' (still hailed as his best solo album), it's his heavest album to date with some real rock n roll moments, and most importantly it features some excellent songs. The two singles Boy Racer & Dagenham Dave are good enough, but the other six tracks are all among the best of Morrisseys solo work (just use itunes to edit out 'that' drum solo).
It's strange how music critics and fan communities change their minds. Kill Uncle, by far Morrissey's weakest collection of songs (and home to some truly dismal lyrics and arrangements) is now hailed by many as "a forgotten master piece", a title that Southpaw Grammer might just live up to. It isn't the Morrissey album anyone expects on first listen and it's certainly hard to imagine RCA records anticipating what we have here (which might explain why only 10 tracks were recorded for the label, later single Boy Racer being padded out with live songs). But Southpaw Grammer is a great rock album that you will come back to again and again.
Re issue edit - May 19th 2009:
Amazon have copied this review to the remastered, reorder, repackaged re issue of Southpaw so I thought I ought to address that briefly.
Personally, I don't like the reordering of the tracks but I do like the new tracks (especially 'Honey you know where to find me'). It's a shame that 'You must please remember' has been left out. The packaging is so so, although it's always good to get some liner notes from the man himself (even if they don't always make much sense). The changes do make it more accessible and at it's heart the reissue is still good old Southpaw. It's still an essential album for a Morrissey fan and it's at least the equal of his recent albums.
Shame they didn't do as good a job with Maladjusted, but there you go.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 24 Apr 2009 21:55:10 BDT
Last edited by the author on 24 Apr 2009 21:56:53 BDT
There's nothing wrong with 'that' drum solo':) it's a great track. I love this album, with Vauxhall and Maladjusted, it makes a very nice trilogy. A shame about the butcher job on the re-issued Maladjusted. That's to be avoided.
In reply to an earlier post on 25 Apr 2009 15:55:01 BDT
Thank you for your feedback. I maintain my stance on the solo though ;-)
But totally agree with your evaluation of the Maladjusted re-issue, there's just no incentive to buy it at all and it wasn't broken in the first place.
Posted on 30 Mar 2013 00:25:40 GMT
mister joe says:
Good review.I am listening to this on the headphones now!I always seem to be drawn to albums that were unloved at the time.I remember this coming out,i mean the reviews were savage,i remember nasty kickings from nme and melody maker.I would've thought around 95 he would have been a Britpop god!But it was all Ray Davies drawling at the time.
I love Boy Racer,the chord change in Reader Meets Author,Bestfriend On The Payroll,Teachers is amazing.I originally had it on casette,i do remember being dissappointed but i think Vauxhall And I had blown me away.I have the Grammar reissue,but i always liked the original artwork and Morrisseys fetish for boxing,young hoodlums.I am tempted to buy the original cd!!Just for the proper artwork.
Anyway don't think i will be getting Maladjusted re issue now considering opinion here.
In reply to an earlier post on 15 Nov 2013 16:49:48 GMT
Last edited by the author on 29 Nov 2013 12:06:55 GMT
Hi and thanks for your comment. I remember that NME review too! Read it in a pub at lunch time. I came to the album years later and just could not fathom the bad press.
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