Blakeson - Writer

Cardiff-based film, theatre and gig reviews, cultural ramblings, whingeing, short films, etc.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Morrissey: "Autobiography"

AutobiographyAutobiography by Morrissey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As a Smiths devotee of long standing, I was always going to read this book. As the reviews point out, it's a self-serving, self-aggrandising exercise in points-scoring, but what autobiography isn't?

The young Morrissey is outed as good at sports, well-travelled and popular with girls; the transition to awkward, solitary "Morrisseyness" seems horrifyingly seamless. The tale is told via relationships with friends, enemies, and family members, memorable moments described with relish and/or horror, song titles littering the text as befits an artist who sings his life. The style is florid to the point of purpleness, constantly flipping between the present and past tense.

The court case which disfigured relations between himself and his former bandmates is obsessively, excessively detailed - drummer Mike Joyce will presumably not be party to any Smiths reunion. The portrait of guitar hero Johnny Marr is one of many touching love stories contained herein.

"Autobiography" is a vivid, witty tale of despair and triumph, full of profound insights. It surely ranks alongside Dylan's "Chronicles" and Stephen Fry's "Moab Is My Washpot" as one of the great modern autobiographies.

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