18 September 2002|
Royal Albert Hall, London, UK
I Want The One I Can't HaveThe second of two consecutive nights at London's Royal Albert Hall went even better than the first one. The fans were more enthusiastic but, unlike the previous night, none of them managed to make it on stage despite many attempts. Morrissey was still in great spirits and talkative. The concert was filmed for later use. Footage has since been seen in the "The Importance Of Being Morrissey" documentary broadcast in 2003. Morrissey friend Linder Sterling was also seen taking photographs. Despite this being the second consecutive date in the same city, there was no change in the setlist.
Morrissey entered stage, bowed left and right, and greeted his fans with the line "Welcome to a night to forget!". After set opener "I Want The One I Can't Have" he added "Welcome to our very humble recital... I hope you're man enough to take it, or woman enough... I think you are... possibly..." Following the line "is it home of the free or what?" at the very beginning of "Hairdresser On Fire" he humourously answered "it's 'what'!" After that song he acknowledged the crowd's reception while chatting to his favourite fan: "They're so nice Julia, they're so nice... Julia is here, working my strings... this could be a continuation of whatever the hell happened last night, I don't know... we'll see... but thank you for crawling along..."
New composition "First Of The Gang To Die" was introduced with the words "You all look as if you could do with a good gang slapping so this song is 'The First Of The Gang To Die'." After the song Morrissey first said "Thank you, you're very gracious..." then joked "You look very similar to the audience who were here last night. Oh! You are the audience who were here last night!" He then introduced "Jack The Ripper": "Well, if you can imagine, if you can imagine in... if you can imagine, in the wildness of your mind, that you are Mary Eddows... you live on Buck's Row... in 1888... and you're minding your own business, when suddenly, you catch the smell of Paco Rabanne and you turn around, and God bless you, you're confronted with the thoughts of Jack the Ripper..."
Following "Jack The Ripper" Morrissey commented "We were very very surprised to see that last night's concert had some good reviews in the press today so... we're obviously doing something wrong! And one review's headline... (someone shouts something and interrupts Morrissey) Oh wait! One review's headline: 'he's older and he's greyer'... as if I'm supposed to be younger and blond or something... I mean, do you know anybody who is younger than they were? No, but I do... This song is about me, me, me, and it's called (pointing at the audience) 'I Like You'."
After the latter number Morrissey went into a long rant: "Just for the record, I'd like to say that we still don't have a record deal and... and we actually have no offers from England which is really heartwarming... and I've actually been told that if I want to find a record deal that I have to have some formation dancers so... Alain and Boz have been working on the military two-step which they might do for you later but meanwhile..." At this point Boz and Alain got in on the joke and actually did a few dance steps. Morrissey then introduced "Mexico" by saying "This is about a very nice place which is slightly west of Basinstoke, it's called 'Mexico'." A Mexican flag was sent on stage during that song. Morrissey stretched it open then threw it back into the audience.
Following "Mexico" Morrissey thanked the audience for the applause by saying "We try to please...", then replied to someone requestion "How Soon Is Now?": "I don't know how soon now is so I can't answer that question." He then proceeded with the customary band introduction: "However, I think some of you know that last year I spent some time in prison... nothing serious, just some petty poisoning, with intent to kill... tabloid journalists can be very touchy... while I was in prison I met some charming musicians who I'd like to introduce... if you don't mind... Oh they mind! First of all would you say hello to my lifelong friend Linder Sterling... (Morrissey goes to the side of the stage where she is positioned taking photographs and hugs her) A wonderful woman... And four other wonderful women are: Boz!... and the two and only Gary!... and the best drummer we've ever had, Deano!... and the highly sophisticated Alain... and I am what's left of Morrissey..."
After "Sister I'm A Poet" Morrissey thanked the audience and when he was thanked back, he retorted "and to you!". The crowd broke into one of many chants of his name and he encouraged it by saying "Let it out, purge yourselves, off your chest, onto somebody else's chest and... watch out for a very small dog running around... 'cause I assure you, his bite is worse than his bark and he's vegetarian don't feed him and... Boz? Nothing..." The latter comment was of course an allusion to the barking dog sound sample heard in the live arrangement of "Alsatian Cousin", the next planned song on the setlist. Fan favourite "Every Day Is Like Sunday" was preceded with "So, Boz is about to pour petrol into his banjo which means this song..."
After "Everyday Is Like Sunday" Morrissey simply thanked the audience, said that it was "...very kind", then introduced "The World Is Full Of Crashing Bores" with the straightforward "I'm not gonna say anything funny, you know the drill, you've seen Top Of The Pops lately, the world is full of crashing bores..." After the song he announced "Now I'd like you to know that my parents are in the audience tonight (crowd cheers)... so please, no swearing, leave it to me... (someone shouts something) What's that my friend? Well if you take your teeth out, I can hear you... Was that nasty? I don't really care... Oh what?... What? Silly, you know, I overdid it... (shushes the audience) The voice of God (Alain says 'The Queen is certainly dead') Did you hear that? Every time Alain speaks I dock £10 from his wages... Which means he now owes me £10!"
"Meat Is Murder" was introduced with something slightly less preachy than usual "You will become vegetarian because all the best people are!" Newest composition and yet-to-be-released "Irish Blood, English Heart" was very simply introduced with the short line "This song is called 'Irish Blood, English Heart'." After the latter number Morrissey introduced "Late Night, Maudlin Street" by saying "Last night I dedicated this next song to the actor Katrin Cartlidge who died on September the 7th aged 41. She made some great films: 'Breaking The Waves', 'Career Girls', 'Naked' and... wherever she is, I hope she's happy..." After the song's final line "truly I do love you", he repeated "I love you, I love you, I love you..."
Before going into main set closer "Speedway" Morrissey first said "You've been very nice and you've made me terribly happy... but how long it will last I just can't say..." Then someone shouted "I Love You" and Morrissey jokingly replied "It will pass... you'll grow hair on your chest and it will pass..." When Morrissey and the band returned to the stage for the encore, Alain said something in his microphone and Morrissey, following what he had said earlier, pointed to him and said "£20!". His final significant words before going into encore "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out" were "You have given us a perfect night and... may God, Oscar Wilde and Johnny Thunders always bless you... you have my heart, thank you!"
Also out there are 3 different fanmade audio recordings, all featuring the complete concert. One is credited to Soundsville International and sounds reasonably good, but muffled. Of the two (uncredited) other ones, only one sounds better than the latter. The other sounds inferior and might be an audio rip from one or another of the video recordings mentioned above. One of the audio recordings is often seen on the internet with fanmade artwork under the titles "A Child Ill" or "Cartlidge Street".
Do you have information about this concert? Or do you own an uncirculated recording of it? If yes please contribute and get credited.