World Peace is None of Your Business (Harvest/Capitol)
The former singer of the Smith is up to his usual tricks on this, his latest solo effort. Recorded in France with producer Joe Chiccarelli (U2, Beck), the album starts with the title track, a tune that commences with the sound of a shaking tambourine before Morrissey’s typically laconic vocals kick in. “World business is none of your business,” Morrissey croons. “You must not tamper with arrangements.” The song has a certain elegance to it and before noisier guitars kick in at song’s end it sounds like something Neil Diamond might have recorded in the ’70s. The official press release for the album tells us the album is all about “calling to task the oppressive forces operating in the world today.” As a result, the subject matter here is rather obvious and Moz doesn’t really tell us anything we know. But anyone who’s followed Morrissey since he left the Smiths knows that subtlety hasn’t been his forte. And yet, you’ve gotta think Morrissey doesn’t take himself too seriously on morose tracks such as “I’m Not a Man” and “Earth is the Loneliest Place.” The latter is a killer anti-anthem, and his voice still sounds great.