02 May 2006

morrissey - "the edges are no longer parallel" (from the roy's keen single, out of print.)

how, you may ask, could it have taken me so long to post a song by morrissey, patron saint of the pasty & sensitive? (particularly when i had worn a morrissey shirt during my last meeting w/ x. she owned two : we were clearly of the same tribe.) simple : morrissey, more so as a solo act, has v. little to offer someone whose love is not unrequited. he's the perfect salve for the rejected, but in this situation, i can't v. well ask, "dear morrissey, did this kind of thing happen to you?"

"edges" gets to the root of the problem of all morrissey fans, which is why it's so shameful that it's a b-side--a b-side in the era when many people had given up on him--and an uncompiled b-side at that (quick: hum "roy's keen" for me!). he finally gets around, after, lo! these many years, to admitting what his only weakness is, and for that alone it's worth hearing. the admission really should really be on the man's grave, whenever that dreaded sunny day arrives :
my only mistake is i'm hoping.
or as it'd likely appear on the lyric sheet :
morrissey fans, we're all of us cynical sorts, hard outer shells, &c., who expect the worst of mankind--and, oh, how disappointed we'd be if the world failed to meet our expectations. but sometimes, just sometimes ... you get a foolish idea in your head and somehow manage to convince yourself of its validity & feasibility. it never works out; the end is in the beginning and yet you go on.

apart from that line, there's not a whole lot else happening in the song lyrically. the title is intoned a number of times, but, unless it's some english slang i've never come across, i don't get it. wouldn't one want the edges no longer to be parallel? that way, they'll have to intersect, and they could intersect tomorrow--or they could go on forever, meeting only at infinity. (and, hey, from the sound of it, morrissey is enjoying bodies intersecting, heh heh, on his new album!) then, things that are meaningful become meaningless--you see what he did there? maybe it's not surprising that it's a b-side.

but musically! magisterial. truly epic. the band manages to make the whole track seem meaningful, from the kinetic guitar to the white album bassline. (again : given his disinterest in "experimentation," maybe it's not surprising that it's a b-side.) truly, it's right up there w/ "speedway" and "disappointed"--and it's a non-album track! oh, but wait, so was "disappointed." and "jack the ripper." and "lost." and "boxers." and "interlude." and "picadilly palare." it seems the main difference between morrissey solo and the smiths, apart from the latter having more musically meaningful tracks, is the former's inability to tell wheat from chaff, which is poison when one's career is judged by albums (and thereby made to look markedly inferior to one's earlier work, when that isn't necessarily so). perhaps he has two weaknesses, after all. luckily for him, i have my weaknesses as well.

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