Morrissey’s I Am Not a Dog on a Chain tour has been largely curtailed by the coronavirus, but he did manage to perform a show at London’s SSE Arena on Saturday night even though most other major shows in the city were shut down. The backdrop for the early part of the concert was the cover of his 2004 LP You Are the Quarry with the title changed to You Are the Quarantined and a medical mask digitally added to Morrissey’s face.
The first song of the evening was the 1987 Smiths song “London,” which he hadn’t played live since 2007. The tune was the B-side to “Shoplifters of the World Unite” and appeared on the 1987 Smiths compilation The World Won’t Listen.
The rest of the Wembley show was a mixture of solo tunes like “Satan Rejected My Soul” and “Irish Blood, English Heart”; covers like Melanie’s “Some Say (I Got Devil)” and Laura Nyro’s “Wedding Bell Blues”; and selections from his new album I Am Not a Dog on a Chain. The only other Smiths song in the show was “Half a Person,” which he recently played live for the first time in 20 years.
Morrissey was originally supposed to play at New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom and Apollo Theater this week, but those plans have been put on hold due to the virus. His next show is scheduled to take place May 2nd at the Cruel World Festival in Carson, California, where he’s headlining on a bill that also includes Devo, Blondie, Bauhaus, the Psychedelic Furs and many other New Wave acts. Organizers haven’t announced whether or not the show will still be able to take place as planned.
The next chance to see Morrissey in America is late June and early July when he’s scheduled to play five nights at the Colosseum at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.