19 May 2006|
First Of The Gang To DieThis gig went well but will not go down as the most memorable of the tour. Morrissey was in apparent good spirits, but at times showed signs of exhaustion and appeared to be going through the motions. He certainly was slightly less talkative than usual. The audience was receptive but at time subdued. Two would-be stage invaders were roughly manhandled and thrown out. There was no change in the setlist.
Morrissey entered stage holding in front of his face an issue of what appeared to be Time Out magazine with Sacha Distel on the cover. He and his musicians went to the front of the stage, formed a line and they all bowed at once. Everyone then headed to their respective position on stage and Morrissey greeted his audience with "So in the mouth of the port, avast ye swabs". This was the first of a few nautical references he delivered throughout the evening.
After "The Youngest Was The Most Loved" came Morrissey's first significant banter of the evening: "That's our new single, which we sing tomorrow night on... (fan shouts 'Jonathan Ross!') Yes amazingly Jonathan Ross! However, however..." Morrissey was actually slightly off because he had recorded the show in advance and his performance on that show was actually broadcast on that very night, not the next one. He extended a few lines in the following number "In The Future When All's Well", to "I thank you, I do, I thank you with all of my heart" and "the future is ended by a long sleep, thank God!".
After "To Me You Are A Work Of Art" Morrissey proceeded with the customary band introduction. On this date he did it using the nautical 'theme of the evening': "And trapped for life on HMS Mozzer are Boz Boorer... there is no way out for Gary Day... for the great Matt Walker... Jesse Tobias... and Michael Farrell..." He then turned to someone in the audience who had shouted something at him and replied "I think you really shouldn't say that... bad taste..." In "You Have Killed Me" he accentuated a line by singing "Piazza Cavour, what the hell is my life for" After the song he cryptically announced "So unfortunately, life goes on..."
After "At Last I Am Born", probably annoyed by things shouted at him from members of the audience, Morrissey asked "So does anybody have anything groundbreaking to say? Well we're listening, we're listening... it's Friday night..." During the last notes of "Ganglord" he commanded "Applause..." When the song was done he introduced it with the line "That song is called 'Ganglord' and it's the b-side or the extra track on our new single which I'm sure at least 12 of you will buy... and we're very grateful... anything helps!"
On this tour a few bars of a local well known song was always played as an intro to "Trouble Loves Me". The very beautiful song chosen for Portsmouth has yet to be identified. After that fan favourite Morrissey thanked the audience and added "Thank you for not throwing anything..." Then, as he screwed up his face in the lights, he went into a conversation with a female fan in the front rows: "What? (fan: 'Morrissey!') Yeah? What? Hmm? (fan: 'It's a great show, I love you!') Do you really? Why? Do you know why? (fan: 'Because you are devastatingly, gorgeously handsome for one thing') I think she's a bit drunk... Oh, I'm sorry, I'm sorry... she must be... she must be drunk!".
Before going into "How Soon Is Now?", Morrissey got the crowd into singing Happy Birthday to Boz: "So today is Boz's birthday... so therefore it's your right to sing to him... a one, a two, a three..." The audience sang along, loudly and as one, which put a smile on Boz's face. After a very well received set closer Morrissey and the band escaped backstage for a short break. When they returned Morrissey announced "You see, this is what happens in life when you practice" before bringing the evening to an end with a highly energetic "Irish Blood, English Heart" followed by a loud "Ciao!".
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