Where: Thebarton Theatre
When: 26th October
“I’ve been here before you know, you’re either too young to remember or too old to forget” announced Morrissey to the Adelaide crowd. The last time Morrissey graced the Thebarton Theatre was in 2002, and judging by the age range of audience members – both nostalgic quiff-sporting devotees and younglings wearing fresh t-shirts emblazoned with his image – they were eagerly awaiting his return.
For someone famous for their asexuality, Morrissey certainly enjoys foreplay. As has become custom with the former Smiths singer, the pre-show featured a projector-strewn playlist of influences including Iggy and the Stooges, James Dean and the New York Dolls.
Kicking off with Suedehead, the theatre’s seating allocation could no longer hold the enthusiasm of Moz fans who thronged to the front of the stage to be close to their increasingly open-collared idol. Speedway saw the musicians swap roles with keyboardist Gustavo Manzur closing out the song with bolting Spanish lead vocals. The surprising inclusion of How Soon Is Now appeased the fans desire for a Smiths classic, with raised iPhones capturing every note and guitar-riff.
Malcolm Turnbull took a hit about Australia’s animal export policy (“corruption, corruption, lies, lies”), later to be reinforced by the always confronting backup video of animal slaughter during Meat is Murder. The red lights pouring over the crowd symbolised blood on our hands, combining with a large image on the screen asking “What is your excuse now?”.
Having last seen Morrissey at the Sydney Opera House at last-years Vivid Festival, the Thebarton Theatre crowd certainly gave fewer letters to Morrissey, but just as many flowers and squeals. Morrissey however, delightful at 56, was both in full voice and full bloom.
But how would Morrissey feel about the gentleman that fell asleep for two-thirds of the show in the leather lounge next to me? Who knows, yet as we left and were handed ‘meat free’ pamphlets, one of the two might be feeling not so great. World peace may be none of Morrissey’s business but delighting the crowd (bar-one) certainly is.
– Rebecca Sheedy