Morrissey A-Z: "(The) Secret of Music"

The.Truth.

about Ruth
I love it. Not for everyone but I'm glad he put this on the record. It's not really that strange, more John Lennon than John Cage but weird enough. Morrissey's willingness to experiment with different forms has resulted in some of his best songs and makes him more than a typical pop star,
Hard to rate this one. 10/10 on its own terms but if I compare it to other songs by Morrissey it's not going to be in my list of desert island discs so I'll say 8/10.
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
I'd love to know more about how this song came about. Did Mando present Morrissey with an early version of this backing music and Morrissey then did his thing over the top of it? (Just seems unlikely, in this case.) Or did Morrissey have these lyrics and then ask someone in the band to come up with something he could sing it over? Or were they all just sitting around in the studio, jamming, completely off their tits?
 
H

hihii

Guest
Its terrible. Moz is trying to emulate Blackstar Bowie, who himself was trying to emulate late era Scott Walker.
Just stick with Scott if you want avant garde crooning, he's the pinnacle. Morrissey nor Bowie could ever reach his highs. His stuff is like a David Lynch film compressed into 10 minutes. Listening to the Phantom Of The Opera on DMT.



 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Some days, this is my favorite song off of the album. I just love it to bits. He dared to go off the rails for a bit and still wound up with a great song. Hypnotic music that lulls you into its groove, paired with highly quotable lyrics about the wonders of music. There’s nothing to dislike - on the contrary!
 

gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
i have liked this from day one,its different,music is almost hypnotic as in its repeated over and over.
7 out of tunes/10 bassoons.
 

gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
they should have played every instument mentioned in the song,that would have been a nice little touch.
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Its terrible. Moz is trying to emulate Blackstar Bowie, who himself was trying to emulate late era Scott Walker.
Just stick with Scott if you want avant garde crooning, he's the pinnacle. Morrissey nor Bowie could ever reach his highs. His stuff is like a David Lynch film compressed into 10 minutes. Listening to the Phantom Of The Opera on DMT.



God bless you for promoting Scott. One of my all time favorites, especially 1984 and onwards. No music on earth can be compared to the stuff Scott made. He’s in a dark and twisted universe of his very own. I’m happy every time someone praises his later stuff.

Not sure, however, that Moz with tSoM was trying to emulate Blackstar Bowie. I don’t hear it.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
I understand why this isn't for everyone, but I enjoy it and I like the fact that Morrissey is still trying new things. I always go back to that period post-1997 when seemingly everybody was suggesting that Morrissey needed to try new things, work with new people and stop repeating himself lyrically.

The work he has done since then certainly hasn't been perfect, and this song is neither a career nor album highlight, but I admire him for occasionally attempting the completely uncommercial and the other.

Mando has also been a good addition to the songwriting pool and has diversified things.

In the poll on the Hoffman board this ranked 64th from 264 solo songs.
 

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
I like this one, but it had to grow on me before I appreciated it more. It’s experimental for Moz, but comparisons to late-period Scott Walker and Bowie are a bit far-fetched: this is still solid nonetheless.
I definitely appreciate all the multitude of effects and instruments played, winding their way in and out of the mix, along with some cool sampling and heavy drum textures: it feels like a jam, but still has cohesiveness, thankfully. Definitely one to divide opinion, but I am now firmly on the “enjoyment” side of the debate.
8/10
(Funny, I was reading a book about Scott Walker and listening to some of his later period stuff recently. What a strange, but fascinating, career trajectory that man had!)
 
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Lujissey.

Guest
I know a lot of people don't like it but I get excited from the first time I hear it, one of the best in ianadoac
 

CJM

Practising troublemaker
This one certainly does divide opinion – I am not quite sure what The Secret Of Music is really about, and I am not convinced it sits well on the album, but, bar a few iffy lines, I enjoy it nonetheless. Perhaps this would have been better as a very welcome B-Side? It seems bizarre that no physical singles were released from ‘I Am Not A Dog On A Chain’, but I guess that was BMG’s decision…
 

Phranc & Open

two-timer
Many here see IANADOAC as a kind of improvement. Many also praise Morrissey's willingness to musically leave the comfort zone. Partly it succeeded, but partly it didn't. Personally, I don't need a late Depeche Mode beat under Morrissey's unique voice, I just want to hear songs, hooks, bridges and refrains that give me goosebumps. He got that with his musicians in the last 10 too rarely. TSOM dares a lot but unfortunately loses everything. It is the hopeless plea for relevance and meaning. There was already something like that by other artists 30-40 years ago, only better. Maybe you also have to admit that Morrissey just can't do everything musically. Improvisation is also not his strength. An outlier like "Sorrow will come in the end" was much more elegant in 1997. A crude mini-musical melody to which Morrissey conjures up pure hatred in a hate-filled (but still gentle) voice.
 

Mozmar

Well-Known Member
I love it; all that bubbling, burbling, & gargling; the hypnotic bass, strong pounding drums, the smattering of keyboard, woodwind instruments, voice samples, and the guitar slashes. Vocals are great on this track, as they are throughout the whole album. All of those who don't like it are 'out of tune'.
In short, it's genius.
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Many here see IANADOAC as a kind of improvement. Many also praise Morrissey's willingness to musically leave the comfort zone. Partly it succeeded, but partly it didn't. Personally, I don't need a late Depeche Mode beat under Morrissey's unique voice, I just want to hear songs, hooks, bridges and refrains that give me goosebumps. He got that with his musicians in the last 10 too rarely. TSOM dares a lot but unfortunately loses everything. It is the hopeless plea for relevance and meaning. There was already something like that by other artists 30-40 years ago, only better. Maybe you also have to admit that Morrissey just can't do everything musically. Improvisation is also not his strength. An outlier like "Sorrow will come in the end" was much more elegant in 1997. A crude mini-musical melody to which Morrissey conjures up pure hatred in a hate-filled (but still gentle) voice.
I seriously doubt one would write and put out a song like this if relevance was the ultimate goal. This is rather a big F you to the mainstream and those that pine for relevance.
 
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