Morrissey played the first night of his 2022 US tour last night (May 10), debuting his upcoming single ‘I Am Veronica’ as well as airing some rarely played solo and Smiths tracks. Check out footage and the setlist below.
Performing at the Orpheum Theatre in Phoenix, the indie veteran aired a new song – which is the opening track from his long-mooted new solo album, ‘The Bonfires Of The Teenagers‘.
“It’s very hard to believe in these ridiculous times, but we are about to release a new single,” Morrissey told the crowd. “We hope you like it, and if you don’t – you must die!”
When someone in the crowd yelled “I hope it will be a hit”, the singer quickly replied: “It won’t be.”
Dressed in a suit and bow-tie, Morrissey opened the full-bodied and bittersweet track with the line: “I am Veronica, and the game, the game I play is older than America / There’s a tiny spot allocated each of us, so why should each day be exactly the same?”
Elsewhere in the set, Morrissey opened the show by performing his solo single ‘We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful’ for the first time since 1992, as well as airing ‘Disappointed’ from ‘Bona Drag’ for the first time since 2014, giving ‘Viva Hate’s ‘Little Man, What Now?’ its first airing since 2004, and giving ‘Having A Go Merchant’ its first outing since 2016.
As for songs by The Smiths, he also played ‘I Know It’s Over’ for the first time since 2013 and ‘Rubber Ring’ for the first time since 2004, and closed with an encore of playing ‘Sweet And Tender Hooligan’ for the first time since 2013.
“Thank you for listening to my goat-like voice,” he told the crowd before the final song. “I love you, or most of you, or some of you, and God bless you.”
‘We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful’ (first performance since 1992)
‘Disappointed’ (first performance since 2014)
‘Once I Saw the River Clean’
‘Never Had No One Ever’
‘Little Man, What Now?’ (first performance since 2004)
‘Everyday Is Like Sunday’
‘I Am Veronica’ (live premiere)
‘Half a Person’
‘I Know It’s Over’ (first performance since 2013)
‘Have-A-Go Merchant’ (first performance since 2016)
‘Irish Blood, English Heart’
‘Rubber Ring’ (first performance since 2004)
‘First of the Gang to Die’
‘Jack the Ripper’
‘Sweet and Tender Hooligan’ (first performance since 2013)
Morrissey’s tour continues this week in Pasadena, California. Visit here for tickets and more information.
Fans of the singer are eager for news on new music after it emerged that ‘Bonfire Of Teenagers’, Morrissey’s album first since leaving his label deal with BMG, will be sold to the highest record label bidder.
Announced via the singer’s website, ‘Bonfire Of Teenagers’ has 11 tracks and was completed in Los Angeles.
“The worst year of my life concludes with the best album of my life,” a quote from Morrissey states of the album, with a note adding: “Morrissey is unsigned. The album is available to the highest (or lowest) bidder.”
A war of words erupted earlier this year between Morrissey and his former Smiths bandmate Johnny Marr when the singer asked Marr to stop mentioning him when giving interviews in an open letter posted on his website. Marr then replied: “An ‘open letter’ hasn’t really been a thing since 1953, It’s all ‘social media’ now. Even Donald J Trump had that one down. Also, this fake news business… a bit 2021 yeah?”
Matt later added that there was “zero chance” of him working with Morrissey again.
The former Smiths frontman also attracted controversy last year when he referred to the coronavirus pandemic as “Con-vid” in an interview, while appearing to agree with his nephew Sam Esty Rayner that “‘COVID society’ is also the precise description of slavery”.
Morrissey also made headlines earlier this year when he responded to Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars with a ‘That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore’ Smiths meme.