by Zac Lomas, edited by Erik van Rheenen
All hail the flustered messiah of the jaded world; the provocateur known as Morrissey has returned after five years of veganism, celibacy, or whatever prevented him from releasing new music. I write this as only Morrissey would see fit to take his persona and music, with a dash of cynicism. It’s been a rocky year for the one they call Moz; several ailments have crippled multiple tours but with last year’s release of his autobiography his profile has raised once more. His tenth studio album, World Peace is None of Your Business, serves as one of his most musically diverse records to date that doesn’t sway far from the usual lyrical content but puts into perspective how aware the man sees his popularity and persona in the modern world.
The title track cuts to the heart of its subject, declaring the mission statement of all government to be of police brutality and taxing the common man to his lowest economic abilities. “You poor little fool” he croons to his masses making what one would assume is a State of the World declaration to his listeners who wouldn’t expect anything less of him. It’s a cautionary track masked with a grand build up clanging like church bells with the help of his longtime band. It’s wonderful to see his crew take such a giant leap in sound often possessing either a Latin or Middle Eastern sound to back up often gut cutting riffs and louder-than-bombs drums.
“Neal Cassady Drops Dead” features some of the grittiest guitars in Morrissey’s discography with a flavor for the samba, peppering a tale of Allen Ginsberg wallowing over the body of his lover. As hard hitting as it tends to be his world is more down in the dumps than usual and while World Peace… leaps and segues from track to track perfectly it is often slow moving and lacks the pep of his last effort, 2009’s “Years of Refusal.” However there is a certain glow of love still present as on “Kiss Me a Lot” a track whose inspired emotions would have fit perfectly early on in his solo career. “Staircase at the University” is another track that is reminiscent of his past work, with a tale of a student pressured into good grades committing suicide assisted by glowing background music that is giddy with Top 40 style.