Johnny Marr interview: "Isaac Brock is the greatest lyricist I’ve ever worked with" (October 13, 2021)

Ketamine Sun

HANG THEM HIGH VERONICA
He is, but I’m just not sure if this is the kind of thing that makes people want to listen to or buy his records.

Well some media have painted a vulgar picture of bus conductor Moz as Hitler, and sadly, some have bought that picture.

With this comment and his tweet about Rick and the Blossoms thing being both ‘funny and horrible’ well, Johnny’s getting nasty. Showing his true colors, which is nice for a change.
 
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Ketamine Sun

HANG THEM HIGH VERONICA
He said this in the context of a really long interview. It’s the media who have extracted and highlighted this one quote. He meant it as complimentary to Isaac Brock. Context, it’s important, right?


Though Marr does say ‘ever worked with’

I don’t think context is going to help, unless he says or said something like ‘besides Morrissey, Brock is one of the greatest ...’ first.
 

Carlislebaz

Cock of the north
Modest mouse are an iconic band.
With a legendary lyricist ..
And
A legendary guitarist ...

In conclusion.......

Modest mouse are the greatest
Band ever .....
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Well some media have painted a vulgar picture of bus conductor Moz as Hitler, and sadly, some have bought that picture.

With this comment and his tweet about Rick and the Blossoms thing being both ‘funny and horrible’ well, Johnny’s getting nasty. Showing his true colors, which is nice for a change.
I do find this Brock business to be deeply disturbing, but I’m not sure these are Marr’s “true colors”. I’m sure Johnny can be both nasty and sweet, just like the rest of us.
Agree about what you say about Moz, though. 100 percent.
 

Dingoatemybabby

Well-Known Member
Though Marr does say ‘ever worked with’

I don’t think context is going to help, unless he says or said something like ‘besides Morrissey, Brock is one of the greatest ...’ first.

Well, here's something nice about Morrissey from another article today. Better?


Marr was not just equally diplomatic while discussing his ex-Smiths bandmate Morrissey—he sounded downright generous, especially considering the band’s famously tense split. When asked why he named “Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me” his favorite Smiths song in a prior interview, despite his guitar not being at the fore like on some of the band’s bigger hits, Marr pointed out the song is “built around the guitar riff going round and round, that’s the kernel of it.” However, Marr then orchestrated other elaborate instrumentation around that riff, such as keyboard and string sounds, that went on to overshadow the guitar. What he loves about the song “is the drama in it. It sums up how I was feeling at the time. Amongst other melancholic things in The Smiths, I hear myself in that—an introspective side, and a melancholic side. And then I just blew that up musically, with a superb performance by the rest of the group. And great composition by Morrissey.”
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Morrissey calls every awful new record he releases his “best ever album” so who really cares.

Really man, and if Morrissey were putting out a record, doing press and playing shows, no one would care if Johnny Marr doesn't mention him! Meanwhile, people here are hanging on Johnny's every word, looking for slights and omissions. Ridiculous as that's ancient history.
 

Uncleskinny

It's all good
Subscriber
Really man, and if Morrissey were putting out a record, doing press and playing shows, no one would care if Johnny Marr doesn't mention him! Meanwhile, people here are hanging on Johnny's every word, looking for slights and omissions. Ridiculous as that's ancient history.
Explain your use of the term 'ancient history'
 
A

Anonymiris

Guest
Really man, and if Morrissey were putting out a record, doing press and playing shows, no one would care if Johnny Marr doesn't mention him! Meanwhile, people here are hanging on Johnny's every word, looking for slights and omissions. Ridiculous as that's ancient history.
I think that one of the reasons people on here are discussing it is because Stereogum highlighted the quote to draw attention to the interview, knowing very well that it would be picked up by other media and that both Morrissey fans and haters would respond.

It's Johnny's personal opinion, which he is entitled to, and might not necessarily have been intended as a dig at Morrissey. Johnny appears to think of his collaboration with Modest Mouse as the happiest time of his life, so that might also color his perception of Isaac Broc's lyrics. Or maybe he was more involved when it came to lyrics than when he was in The Smiths? Anyway, going by Johnny's own lyrics, he might not be the best judge or he just prefers a certain type of lyric.

It's a shame to focus on this one quote, though, as I found the entire interview an interesting read. Towards the end, Johnny actually says some nice things about Morrissey and his time in The Smiths, like this:

"When the Smiths came out, there was always more going on in that band in the culture than just the music. I think we wore that pretty well for young men, myself and Morrissey. There was gender politics in there, there was ideological politics in, there was politics politics in there, there was subversion in there. We kind of built all these elements in and poured petrol on it, and the important thing, I guess, is the songs kept getting better and better."

"The important thing is the material stands up. I think there’s a reason why “Please Please Please” or “There Is A Light” are revered. I genuinely think there’s a component that I’m not able to put my finger on — at least one, maybe many components."
 

Famous when dead

Vulgarian
Moderator
I think that one of the reasons people on here are discussing it is because Stereogum highlighted the quote to draw attention to the interview, knowing very well that it would be picked up by other media and that both Morrissey fans and haters would respond.

It's Johnny's personal opinion, which he is entitled to, and might not necessarily have been intended as a dig at Morrissey. Johnny appears to think of his collaboration with Modest Mouse as the happiest time of his life, so that might also color his perception of Isaac Broc's lyrics. Or maybe he was more involved when it came to lyrics than when he was in The Smiths? Anyway, going by Johnny's own lyrics, he might not be the best judge or he just prefers a certain type of lyric.

It's a shame to focus on this one quote, though, as I found the entire interview an interesting read. Towards the end, Johnny actually says some nice things about Morrissey and his time in The Smiths, like this:

"When the Smiths came out, there was always more going on in that band in the culture than just the music. I think we wore that pretty well for young men, myself and Morrissey. There was gender politics in there, there was ideological politics in, there was politics politics in there, there was subversion in there. We kind of built all these elements in and poured petrol on it, and the important thing, I guess, is the songs kept getting better and better."

"The important thing is the material stands up. I think there’s a reason why “Please Please Please” or “There Is A Light” are revered. I genuinely think there’s a component that I’m not able to put my finger on — at least one, maybe many components."
Was there a point to registering an account and still posting anon posts requiring approval?
FWD.
 

Ketamine Sun

HANG THEM HIGH VERONICA
someone’s gonna have to stay after school and clean the blackboard.
 

ACTON

Don't Leave Us In The Dark

Johnny Marr chooses “the greatest lyricist I’ve ever worked with” – and it's not Morrissey​


Excerpt about Modest Rat:

"There was a brotherhood that is there to this day. Probably the best time of my life. Some supernaturally good shows. I liked my role. It’s just a thing that happened in my life that I’m eternally grateful for. And Isaac Brock is the greatest lyricist I’ve ever worked with. I’ve seen him write an amazing song, and then make it better, and then make it better again."
 
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