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Mozhead revisited.

I have owned up to my terribly awful DVD collection before. I have two copies of “Love Actually,” a film I’ve heard called “Jerks get what they want for Christmas.” I've got Starsky and Hutch, the remake, but I swear I've never watched it. I also own several concert DVDs, which are great for watching once.

While snowed in this weekend I watched almost the entirety of “Who Put the M in Manchester?”—which documents one show (in Manchester, obv) on Morrissey’s 2004 tour in support of “You Are the Quarry.”

“Who Put the M in Manchester” is best seen as documenting Morrissey’s return. Not that he ever went away, but it’s fun to see the start of his 2000s reinvention as something he always seemed to want to be—a bandleader, a showman, a reincarnation of fat Elvis. Whether or not the bank of lights flashing MORRISSEY upstage are intentionally or unintentionally humorous, it would neither surprise nor disappoint me to see Morrissey move to Vegas and start a nightly revue.

YAtQ was a comeback album for Morrissey, who flirted with irrelevance in the late 90s. It did well and although its place in the Smiths/Morrissey canon is still open for debate, most of the songs hold up. That’s great for “Who Put the M” because it leans hard on that album. It opens with “First of the Gang to Die,” maybe YAtQ’s finest moment, with its bluntly brutal imagery and yodeling outro—a moment that signals that Moz isn’t going to hit the high notes in concert. “Hairdresser on Fire” lets the audience know that the band is willing to dip into its back catalog, although I’m sure we’d all rather hear the A side of that record. “Irish Blood, English Heart” may actually be better live than on the album—it ends with a guitar solo that’s anticlimactic on record but in concert seems only to be an opportunity for Morrissey to recover from probably his most passionately political verse ever.

The DVD gets a little doldrums-y from there until the end of the show, when Morrissey breaks out the Smiths hits. At some shows at the time he was doing “Bigmouth,” “How Soon Is Now?” and others, but here you just get “Shoplifters” and “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out.” Maybe I'll watch it one more time.

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