Morrissey A-Z: "I Couldn't Understand Why People Laughed"

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member


Today's song is this one: "unreleased" for a while but then posted on YouTube by SER in August 2020 as a "thank you" for the flowers sent by fans after the death of Morrissey's mother.

What do we think of this one?
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Along with Forgive Someone and (especially) Blue Dreamer's Eyes, the best thing he's released the past 10+ years, in my opinion. It encapsulates everything I love about him and his music. I've mentioned it before, but the key ingredients are as always warmth, empathy, melancholy and melody. This song, as well as the others I mentioned, checks all the boxes.
 

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
Forgot what a lovely song this was. Nice production highlighting the use of lots of natural instrumentation I don't think I've heard on (m)any other Moz songs. Confessional and funny lyrics - I'll say it, this is what I expected “Trouble Loves Me” to sound like, and believe that this track captures feelings of embarrassment and alienation much better than that song.
Only gripe would be the very familiar chord sequence, sounding like a clear imitation of Alain - this carbon dates the song, removing some of the timeless feeling that the other parts of the instrumentation give off.
Why it wasn’t released makes sense and baffles me at the same time, given the time when it was presumably recorded.
8/10
 
M

Mozzer1980

Guest
One of the few useful things Sam did was upload this song to Youtube. Wonderful music gem :blush:
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
It feels a little unfinished in places, and I can see why it wouldn't have suited an album, but it's still quite impressive for a "lost" song.

Morrissey's voice sounds great and there is some real attention to detail with the musicianship.

While some of the criticism that his nephew has received has been legitimate, there have been plenty of positives such as the release of songs like this.
 

GirlAfraidWillNeverLearn

The Courage to Get on People's Tits
It's beautifully simple/simply beautiful.


The lyrics are essentially Morrissey and if sung by anyone else would probably seem a bit trite but he makes it sound so honest and personal.
To me it's a résumé of what defines him as a singer and he manages to express quite aptly what makes him so special in the eyes of many members of his audience:


I said I
Can rectify
Everything that's wrong




I sang loud and proud in time
I said I look into animal's eyes
And I see mine
I see mine




For the whole world to see
I sang I am she
And he is me
He is me


In less poetic words: He makes you feel it's gonna be okay, he speaks for the outsider because he is the outsider.

And he also tells us something about himself and his own motivation:

I sing it because I
Could never speak it


The part I like the most is at the end when even the hearts of his detractors can't escape his spell

I froze upon the stage
The soul open wide
And people laughed so hard
That they cried


The instrumentation is suitably sparse, the Spanish guitar sounds very wistful and Jesse's sonorous twang gives it the required depth.

It reminds me a lot of Come Back To Camden, because both have the same stage musical feeling to them (in a good way!).

And of course... that voice is everything.
 
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Radis Noir

Shut yer gobs, you wankers!
Reminds me a bit of 'I Know Very Well How I Got My Name.' It's not a bad song but I agree that it sounds unfinished.
 

Mayfly

Well-Known Member
It may sound a little unfinished, yet I am not convinced that adding more production and perhaps some extra instruments would make it a better song. I love it for its simplicity and fragility, both the voice and the Spanish guitar are adorable. I suppose Gustavo is playing the Spanish guitar, not Jesse. Is this also a Manzur co-write?
 

Southport Grandma

Active Member
It may sound a little unfinished, yet I am not convinced that adding more production and perhaps some extra instruments would make it a better song. I love it for its simplicity and fragility, both the voice and the Spanish guitar are adorable. I suppose Gustavo is playing the Spanish guitar, not Jesse. Is this also a Manzur co-write?
Boz Boorer co-write iirc.
 

Phranc & Open

Well-Known Member
The 3-4 tracks from the presumed 2013-2019 phase that Morrissey gave as a gift to fans but also the rare B-side the era are much more valuable to me personally than almost anything on WPINOYB or LIHS. It's strange that he held these tracks back because musically they are much more in keeping with the aged artist and sound tasteful through and through. So also this ballad. My guess is that it was not Joe Chiccarelli who produced this demo, but the band or Boz himself. I like the piece very much.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
It may sound a little unfinished, yet I am not convinced that adding more production and perhaps some extra instruments would make it a better song. I love it for its simplicity and fragility, both the voice and the Spanish guitar are adorable. I suppose Gustavo is playing the Spanish guitar, not Jesse. Is this also a Manzur co-write?
I think Morrissey's contributions are possibly the least finished.

"I couldn't understand why people laughed
I couldn't understand
I collected my things and I left"

The words in bold don't really scan properly and some rewriting wouldn't have gone amiss.
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
It may sound a little unfinished, yet I am not convinced that adding more production and perhaps some extra instruments would make it a better song. I love it for its simplicity and fragility, both the voice and the Spanish guitar are adorable. I suppose Gustavo is playing the Spanish guitar, not Jesse. Is this also a Manzur co-write?
Ha! Gustavo couldn’t write a song this coherent and beautiful to save his life. 😁
 
N

N.Muntz

Guest
See, this song can't about me, because everytime I :mock: at Morrissey, I make sure he knows exactly why.

It's only fair.
 
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