22 April 2004|
The Wiltern, Los Angeles, CA
First Of The Gang To DieMorrissey's first show of a five-night residency at the Wiltern in Los Angeles was an absolute success. The sound was great and Morrissey and the band were in fantastic spirits. The audience was extremely receptive, which is no surprise for Los Angeles. For the first time on this tour some fans successfully made it on stage. One of the stage crashers accidentally knocked Morrissey's microphone out of his hands. After darting offstage, he had a change of mind, picked up the microphone and gave it back to Morrissey.
The setlist content was more or less the same as on earlier dates of this tour, but its latter half was scrambled and it was augmented by the live introduction of a new song, a future b-side called "Don't Make Fun Of Daddy's Voice". The song was going to be a setlist regular for the remainder of this tour.
As he walked on stage Morrissey greeted the audience with something undecipherable and after set opener "First Of The Gang To Die" he extended it with "So nice to see your smiling faces... (points at the audience and counts) one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight..." After the crowd favourite "Hairdresser On Fire" he announced "Amazingly we now have a ... amazingly we now have a new long playing gramophone record which is called (points at the audience) 'You Are The Quarry' and..." After "How Can Anybody Possibly Know How I Feel?" he asked his favourite fan "Julia, you're okay? Ahh, no? Yeah?"
After "A Rush And A Push And The Land Is Ours" the audience went really wild and cheered Morrissey very loudly. The man basked in it for a short time, mock-innocently asked "What?", then teasingly asked "So you weren't tempted by the Greek Theater tonight? No? I believe it's the Dave Matthews Band, you should have been there! (crowd boos) Now don't pretend you don't like Dave Matthews, I know you do... He rocks man!... I apologize..." Thirty seconds into "I Have Forgiven Jesus" he motioned for the band to stop. He had a few words with them then told the audience "Honestly, we really are professional now... This song is called 'I Have Forgiven Jesus'." They had it right on the second try and after it, when the audience cheered, Morrissey self-deprecatingly said "good acting!".
After "Everyday Is Like Sunday" Morrissey thanked his audience and added "Thank you also for (mumbles)... thank you for buying your tickets with such speed, it's... it means such a great deal when you get to my age..." Following "I'm Not Sorry" he teased "I don't know about you but I'm living here for the next five nights... (crowd screams) and the scream is a scream of horror I tell you... no?"
Between "Such A Little Thing Makes Such A Big Difference" and "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out" Morrissey said "So Julia, the old songs are not necessarily the best", but it is unclear whether he had the former or the latter in mind when he said it. "There Is A Light That Never Goes Out" was actually slotted at an unusual position. It had so far always been played as an encore or, as on the previous date, a main set closer. A few fans who perhaps thought the end of the evening had come earlier than expected got on stage during the song. The outro was slightly extended but the musicians didn't put down their instruments and leave one by one the way they did when the song ended the set.
The new album track "All The Lazy Dykes" was introduced with "This is a song from, yes yes yes, our new cd, and it's called 'All The Lasy Dykes'." After the song Morrissey proceeded with the customary introduction of the band: "That was a song called 'All The Lasy Dykes' which is written only with extreme love and affection and... while we're... while on the subject of lazy dykes, could I please introduce to you thee boys in thee band, beginning with the wonderful Boz... the fantastic Gary... the incredible Deano... the mesmerizing Alain... and our wonderful new friend Mikey..."
After "The World Is Full Of Crashing Bores" Morrissey asked "Can you stand any more? (crowd cheers)... because we won't be offended if you ask us to leave..." He then introduced "No One Can Hold A Candle To You" with "This is a cover version from the nineteen-hate-ies by a group called... (someone shouts 'Raymonde') No... Flock Of Seagulls! By a group called Raymonde and it goes absolutely nothing like this..." After the song he brushed his hair with one of his hands and asked "Is my hair okay? (crowd cheers positively) It's a wig!"
During the Smiths classic "The Headmaster Ritual" many fans tried and successfully made it on stage, sometimes helped by Morrissey who thus ended up missing some of his lines in the process. The man was apparently not very satisfied with the song because he followed it with the comment "We should be in tune by Monday... Tuesday!" The same happened with the debuting "Don't Make Fun Of Daddy's Voice" and this one was followed with the more poetic "We should be in tune by June... that was a song called 'Don't Make Fun Of Daddy's Voice' and... what?"
Before going into main set closer "I Like You" Morrissey started preparing his goodbyes: "Thank you for your courage, I have so much to learn, I have so much to learn..." When he returned to the stage for the encore, amid deafening cheers, his final banter before going into "Irish Blood, English Heart" was "Only if you're sure... We don't want you to miss Law and Order, or Roseanne... Jesus!"
An audio-only audience recording of the complete set is also available on physical support or in digital format on the internet (sometimes in a scrambled order), sometimes under the title "Live At The Wiltern". It features the complete set and the sound quality is average. It is expected that the audio from the slightly better sounding video recording mentioned above may also at some point make it on the internet.
A second audience recording is rumoured. Either the latter or the former were recorder by Angel E.
Do you have information about this concert? Or do you own an uncirculated recording of it? If yes please contribute and get credited.