Morrissey A-Z: "Southpaw"

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member




Today's A-Z entry is this Morrissey/Whyte composition, the closing track on the original release of Southpaw Grammar.

What do we think?
 
H

hihithere

Guest
Not one I go back to often because of the length, the band and production on this track are tight as f***. Lyrics were about ME when this was released.

10/10
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Somewhat of an unsung masterpiece, this. Progressive, yes, but atmospheric more than anything.
 

gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
all very dramatic for a wednesday morning,really good song,southpaw grammar hardly gets mentioned on here,so underrated.love his voice on this album.
8 treated /10 easily defeated.
 

Eldritch

Well-Known Member
The redeeming final to an otherwise very weak and confused album. The first five minutes are Morrissey at his most forlorn, poetic and best. I'm not sure if I find the last five minutes really necessary but at this point in the album I'm willing to accept anything that isn't another plodding disaster like the four previous tracks on the album have been.
 

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
In my top 5 Moz tracks - this is just a masterpiece, and showed Moz could create a continually engaging long track. The acoustic buildup leading into the energetic verses, with some great, concise, and yet so evocative images in the lyrics. But surely the crowning glory of this song must be the long fade-out, where the band just “kept the tape running” as an almighty drone sweeps the mix. Small countermelodies surface and sink, just like the drowning voice of Moz as he shouts one last plea for help. On the “acoustic” unreleased version, a heart-tugging string motif reminiscent of “There Is A Light...” cements the possible Smiths connections (“you ran back to Ma/Marr”) and also continues the thread of grand string arrangements from “Reader Meet Author” and “Dagenham Dave.” A very - for Moz - experimental moment, and one that links him to some of the more challenging bands I appreciate and enjoy, for a glorious 5 minutes. A real masterwork, an unfairly slept on piece of genius from an excellent album.
10/10
 

CJM

Practising troublemaker
A wonderful opposing bookend to The Teachers Are Afraid of The Pupils which starts our commute to and through ‘Southpaw Grammar’, this album finale, another ten minute topper, is just as absorbing. Lyrically Southpaw, to me, is an enjoyable slice of cathartic self-therapy. Couple that with some of Alain Whyte’s slightly more experimental song-writing & sonic meanderings, and this song is raised to loftier heights. Great end to a great album!
 

Phranc & Open

Just Frenk!
It would be interesting to know what exactly motivated Morrissey not to make the successor to Vauxhall just as balanced, beautiful and calm. Was it the "In Person" tour in February 1995 or something else entirely? I think Southpaw is an outstanding track, where Morrissey and his musicians merge into one unit and the band is given immense space. Guitar cascades build up and down and Spencer plays a kind of military march to it. A beautiful madness in which I have been bathing regularly for almost 26 years! Anyone who wants to learn something about Morrissey should listen to Southpaw Grammar.
 
N

null

Guest
the church's "under the milky way" surely served as the inspiration for alain to write one of m's most underrated epics
 

Mozmar

Well-Known Member
Wow, this particular track really is something special, & possibly my favourite Moz track. Totally love SG as an album.
This track gives us slicing, sliding, scratching, & eerie sounding guitars, astonishing drumming from Cobrin - again almost a showcase for his wonderful skills on the skins; the changing tempos make this absolutely brilliant. Moz in superb form here vocally, the band creating a wonderful synergy - a sum greater than all of its parts. This is higher echelon stuff which surely could have/should have gone on for at least another 5 mins.
There is something that you should know: This is outrageously wonderfully brilliant!
 

Carlisle baz

Cock of the north
This song is great on its original album and fits in well with all the other songs in SG.

Not something that would make me flee to Alexa when entertaining
The Carlisle coors Crew of a Saturday afternoon...

That said, there is no way this is a bad song whatsoever, personally it’s Moz and band doing the prog rock
Thing...

Does it go on to long????

Of course it 4 king does

6.5/10
 
The song that redeems the album.

Feeling and emotion in spades from an album that could've otherwise been called 'Spent The Day Phoning It In'

Easily in the top 10 of all time Moz solo songs.

I remember a debate amongst some fans at the time as to whether the lyric was 'ran back to Ma' or 'ran back to Marr' as the cassette version that we all bought didn't feature lyrics.

A Moz masterpiece.
 

Hovis Lesley

Well-Known Member
This song is great on its original album and fits in well with all the other songs in SG.

Not something that would make me flee to Alexa when entertaining
The Carlisle coors Crew of a Saturday afternoon...

That said, there is no way this is a bad song whatsoever, personally it’s Moz and band doing the prog rock
Thing...

Does it go on to long????

Of course it 4 king does

6.5/10
You are the David Quantick of Solo.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
Yes, the song is far too long as Alain W, Jonny B, Danton S etc. have all acknowledged.

It's certainly better than most of its substandard album and, even though I don't love it, I can understand why it is so popular. The re-issue that shifted it to the middle of the album was bonkers.

In the poll on the Hoffman board this ranked 46th from 264 solo songs.
 
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