Morrissey A-Z: "Art-Hounds"

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member

Number thirteen in the Morrissey A-Z is this song, from the deluxe edition of WPINOYB. What do we think?

(And: does anyone on here actually have a fat aunt Mabel? Because that would be kind of cool.)
 
J

Janice

Guest
I was at Brixton the night thud got played (it hadn’t even been rumoured until then) and enjoyed it
I was delighted when it was tagged onto the World Peace cd and played it to death for 9 months or so. Since then, I rarely play it. But, I’m going today for old time sake.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Live version is amazing - studio version less so. The guitars and energy are gone from the music, and changing the line "when you cannot stand the real world" to "if you cannot stand this fake world" is a mistake - the original version fits much better the idea of losing oneself in art.

This and 'Mexico' are the two songs that suffered most from 'great live - turned out a bit shit in studio' syndrome.
 

Nerak

Reverse Ferret
I took ages to get used to World Peace with its disjointed sound, cheesy 80s cabaret synths & Moz (as usual) saying something startlingly frank - who sings about shriveled and small nether regions?

I like the urgency he puts into it - & the flamboyant 'my life is opera', 'I take lots of pills' thing.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
This one really ought to have been part of the album proper.

A great vocal from Morrissey where he really stretches himself, and fine humorous lyrics. Instead of the anger that has sometimes been a little bit overpowering on recent albums, there is wit and mockery which I find much more appealing.

The backing track also has some energy to it.

I may as well post the rankings for each song from the poll on the other board (not because they are at all definitive, but just to provide a different opinion) and this came 53rd from 264.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
This is how it should sound - muscular and energetic. I was in the audience the night it was played, and it ripped the roof off, and sounded like the best song Moz had come out with in years. The guitars on the studio version sound very weak and stripped back in comparison. This was crying out for the sort of ballsy production that 'The Boy Racer' had. Oh well.
 

gordyboy9

its not me its you.
love this song ,one of my favourites,there is a real urgencey to this song,its like a race to the end to get it finished.lots pf great ooohhhs in it,i must be very easily pleased because there is very few M songs that i dont like.this is going to take months to get through but im enjoying hearing each song whilst im having my breakfast.
 

Ben Budd

Well-Known Member
It's ok, it's nowhere near as good as everyone else thinks it is.
 

gordyboy9

its not me its you.
It's ok, it's nowhere near as good as everyone else thinks it is.
very good of you to tell us what we should like and what we should not like,think we can make our minds up.if your going to say something like this at least say in my opinion.
 

GirlAfraidWillNeverLearn

The Courage to Get on People's Tits
It's certainly unique. Written closer to Years Of Refusal than to the rest of World Peace (as it was played live in 2011), it wouldn't really have fit with either album.

Unlike many other songs we've already discussed I really like the music here, one of Boz's more interesting tunes.

I love the bombast and orotundity of it. It's mean and caustic and reflects Morrissey's contempt for critics and anyone who doesn't fully commit their life to the arts. It kind of reminds me of that flippant comment he made on The One Show, that unemployed people should try painting or writing instead 😆

This could have been a minor hit, had it been slightly streamlined.

My favourite parts are

Art-hounds see the Greek ideal
and gaze on what they'll never feel


The opera bit; the pills bit

And

If you cannot stand this fake world
Take my hand


...which would sound trite if anyone else were to sing it but expresses one of the main reasons people turn to Morrissey's music.



One and only live performance, August 7, 2011:

 
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BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
Yes, I don't think it completely *works* as a song but I love the way that both Boz and Morrissey seem to have thrown so much at it, there are almost 3 different songs in here. I much prefer that to some of the weaker songs that feel like barely fleshed out sketches. The whole thing has a crazy energy to it, all while the lyrics veer from childish to inspired!
 

GirlAfraidWillNeverLearn

The Courage to Get on People's Tits
Yes, in a way it's art expressed to its fullest. It's not conceptual but passionate and chaotic and urgent and energetic and explosive.
 

Ben Budd

Well-Known Member
very good of you to tell us what we should like and what we should not like,think we can make our minds up.if your going to say something like this at least say in my opinion.
in my opinion, art hounds is an overrated song and not as good as what other posters in this thread think it is.

is that better, soft lad?
 

Ben Budd

Well-Known Member
And

If you cannot stand this fake world
Take my hand


...which would sound trite if anyone else were to sing it but expresses one of the main reasons people turn to Morrissey's music.
Nah, this is actively why I dislike this song. I hate it when the final part of the song takes a seemingly unrelated turn lyricially and has no real correspondence with the rest of the text. It's the lyrical version of fading a song out because you can't come up with an ending. See also the ghetto coda from Ganglord, it just strikes me as lazy songwriting and quite jarring. Squeezing My Skull NEARLY suffers from it, but I give it a pass because I don't mind the song as a whole.

Can I just stress that this is my opinion, in case gordy has a cry again? Thank you.
 

GirlAfraidWillNeverLearn

The Courage to Get on People's Tits
Nah, this is actively why I dislike this song. I hate it when the final part of the song takes a seemingly unrelated turn lyricially and has no real correspondence with the rest of the text. It's the lyrical version of fading a song out because you can't come up with an ending. See also the ghetto coda from Ganglord, it just strikes me as lazy songwriting and quite jarring. Squeezing My Skull NEARLY suffers from it, but I give it a pass because I don't mind the song as a whole.

Can I just stress that this is my opinion, in case gordy has a cry again? Thank you.
I don't think it's unrelated to the rest of the song. The beginning describes the fake world he's referring to, the art-hounds are part of it and make it unbearable. He's offering those who aren't like them a different perspective.


One could argue that the 16 pills part is kind of unrelated to the rest though.

It's not that uncommon in his lyrics and I think it's a result of his writing process, which is basically starting with the melody and singing words that sound good rather than writing an elaborate draft.
 
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Ben Budd

Well-Known Member
I don't think it's unrelated to the rest of the song. The beginning describes the fake world he's referring to, the art-hounds are part of it and make it unbearable. He's offering those who aren't like them a different perspective.


One could argue that the 16 pills part is kind of unrelated to the rest though.

It's not that uncommon in his lyrics and I think it's a result of his writing process, which is basically starting with the melody and singing words that sound good rather than writing an elaborate draft.
I think what I am trying to say it's just a lazy, jarring fall back. A well that Morrissey visits very often that is too literal and on the nose. It means something so obvious that it doesn't mean anything.

Once again, just to be totally clear, this is my opinion. Thank you.
 

Verso

Well-Known Member
Woof, I don't have a single nice thing to say about this one. It's emblematic of a lot of what I dislike about modern Moz compositions: overproduced, melodically devoid and lyrics begging for even a shred of ambiguity. Hearing him go on about "this fake world" is as bad as hearing him croon the words "mainstream media."
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
Woof, I don't have a single nice thing to say about this one. It's emblematic of a lot of what I dislike about modern Moz compositions: overproduced, melodically devoid and lyrics begging for even a shred of ambiguity. Hearing him go on about "this fake world" is as bad as hearing him croon the words "mainstream media."
Oh god, totally agree about "mainstream media" but for whatever reason this doesn't grate with me in the same way.
 

GirlAfraidWillNeverLearn

The Courage to Get on People's Tits
Oh god, totally agree about "mainstream media" but for whatever reason this doesn't grate with me in the same way.
Because it's not the same. "Fake world" in this case doesn't refer to the world in general or to the media or whatever but to the illusion that critics matter.
 

MrShoes

The Courage to Get on People's Tits!
Subscriber
Woof, I don't have a single nice thing to say about this one. It's emblematic of a lot of what I dislike about modern Moz compositions: overproduced, melodically devoid and lyrics begging for even a shred of ambiguity. Hearing him go on about "this fake world" is as bad as hearing him croon the words "mainstream media."

Yeah - my sentiments as well. Interesting intro but it never rose above, "meh" for me. I felt is was an example of trying too hard. But hey, to each his own!
 
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