Rare Tracks by Morrissey (Review)

Many of these songs were so good that they should’ve been on Maladjusted instead of that album’s weaker tracks.
Rare Tracks - Morrissey

I don’t consider Maladjusted a bad album. I think it’s way better than its predecessor, Southpaw Grammar, and, of course, than Kill Uncle. Nonetheless, when I listened to this EP, I just got upset at the Mozzer. It wasn’t because Rare Tracks was bad; quite the contrary, many of the songs were so good that they should’ve been on Maladjusted instead of that album’s weaker tracks. In short, Maladjusted could be a better album than it actually was (Warning: that does not mean it could’ve been a Your Arsenal or a Vauxhall and I, but at least could second, or even equal Viva Hate).

For example, how could Morrissey have put the boring, “Purple Rain”-like “Wide To Receive” instead of the much more emotional Verve-like “Lost”? Was he out of his mind? Yes, I think so. “This Is Not Your Country” could be a great number; It recalls Southpaw Grammar, sure, but it gets better results, not to mention the touching lyrics about conflicts of Northern Ireland. Or at least I think so; many could interpret those lyrics as racist (Was that your fear, Steven?). I like “I Can Have Both” (for a friend of mine, the title and the lyrics seem to suggest Moz’s [possible] bisexuality; being “the shop that never opens” referring to sex and celibacy). The song has simple structures, and is very accessible, but it is way better than the irritating “He Cried.” “Heir Apparent” is a simple yet intense song that should’ve been present in Maladjusted.

But instead of those songs, Morrissey preferred the plain “Papa Jack,” “Wide To Receive” and “He Cried.” Only he knows why. It is a shame for an album that could be almost (or even) excellent if it had been less patchy.

One hopes Moz learns from his mistakes for his next album. By the way, is he planning to do the same thing that his fellow Englishman Peter Gabriel has done, letting so many years pass before a new album? Advice to Morrissey; if you want to remain active, since I have always loved your lyrics, which denote your literary capabilities, I recommend that you devote yourself to poetry or novels until you find a new record company, or inspiration or whatever.

Written by Pekky Marquez.