LIVE REVIEW: Morrissey at WIN Entertainment Centre 29/10/16

Morrissey – a performer so iconic he goes by one name like Rihanna or Madonna. And, just like Rihanna and Madonna, Morrissey is known for having the attitude of a diva. Yet, at his concert at Win Entertainment Centre on October 29th, no sign of this apparent pretentiousness was seen as the Smiths singer played a lively, fun show for a crowd filled with fans young and old.

Morrissey’s appearance on the night was preceded by a projected presentation of music videos and clips ranging from the Sex Pistol’s God Save the Queen, to Cher, to eerie clips of a Ferris wheel turning.  In a suitably dramatic reveal, the projection sheet dropped to reveal Morrissey and his band. Wearing his instantly recognisable half-buttoned white shirt, Morrissey responded to the cheers of the crowd with ‘It’s my pleasure’, before kicking off with his debut solo single ‘Suedehead.’ The British star played a number of Smiths tracks as well as songs from his solo releases, all of which were received well by the crowd.

Morrissey was backed by a stellar band who between them played a variety of instruments, including a giant gong and a piano accordion, which may seem like bizarre choices, but worked surprisingly well. While many people would think of Morrissey and his previous band The Smiths as rather soft, willowy music, Morrissey’s performance had a decidedly rocking vibe filled with energy. Although, at one point the 57 year old musician told the crowd after a raucous song ‘It’s not as easy as it looks!’

Morrissey is a well-known political and animal-rights activist and this was strikingly obvious in the second half of his performance. During one song, videos of police brutality played in the background as he sang about the cause, and another song, ‘Meat is Murder’ featured graphic images of slaughterhouses and animal factories, showcasing the violence and cruelty of the meat industry. Morrissey finished the aggressive songs with the lyrics ‘You’re too fat, you’re too macho, you’re too lazy to change.’ This intense politicism may have been shocking coming from a pop-star, but Morrissey’s reputation meant that this statement didn’t really seem out of place at one of his concerts. Even Australian politics weren’t safe from his jabs as Morrissey told the crowd he had seen roadkill on the way to the concert; three kangaroos, two wombats and Malcom Turnbull. ‘So there’s something good in every bad situation’ he joked.

Many musicians seem to put less and less effort into their performances as they gain popularity, or perhaps they tire with age. Morrissey on the other hand delivered a fantastic performance, showcasing his voice that was just as strong as at the height of The Smiths popularity.

Even after headlining the likes of Wembley and touring with David Bowie, Morrissey gave it his all to put on a stellar show in Wollongong.

Oct 29th 2016 | Daisy Loomes