Morrissey A-Z: "Please Help the Cause Against Loneliness"

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member




Today's song is this Morrissey/Street composition, originally written during the Viva Hate sessions but then left out and picked up (or "microwaved" in Morrissey's words) by Sandie Shaw who released it as the first single from her Hello Angel album in 1988. Morrissey's demo was then included on the 2010 reissue of Bona Drag.

What do we think?
 

Janice

Well-Known Member
Nah.
Not a Moz Masterpiece this one
Even comrade V won’t be able to drag this one to masterpiece status.
Easy to see why this was abandoned in the first instance.
Distinctly average
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
I dunno, I have a soft spot for this one - well, Sandie's version in particular. It's a jaunty, throwaway pop single with a brilliant title. I can't think of any other writer who has such a varied body of work about the theme of loneliness.
 

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
An okay demo and song overall. The lyrics are tongue in cheek, obviously, considering the clichéd subject matter and look forward to “Sing Your Life” singing “all the things you love...all the things you loathe”. The music is another Motown stomper like “I Don’t Mind If You Forget Me”, though I tend to prefer that one more as it’s more fully realised. This fails mainly because it doesn’t have enough to transform a mediocre tune. Still, it sits comfortably alongside the other bonus tracks - but not unique in many or any ways.
Quite enjoy Sandie’s version, though.
6/10
 

gordyboy9

its not me its you.
its not terrible and its only 2 minutes and 8 seconds so it starts and before you know its finished.some funny lines in it as well,its M having a laugh.
7 home addresses/10 inside legs.
 

Gregor Samsa

I straighten up, and my position is one of hope.
Too cute, too twee, too jaunty for my taste, but at the same time definitely not a terrible song by any means.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
Unlike most of Morrissey's songs, much of it sounds like it could have been written by a million other acts of the period. Particularly the music which is distinctly frothy.

The lyrics feel a little unfinished and the "I'm so young" theme didn't entirely fit Sandie and her attempt at a comeback. I still quite like her version, though.

At best this could have been a passable b-side for Moz.

In the poll on the Hoffman board this ranked 250th from 264 solo songs.
 
D

DaggerDave

Guest
This is a pleasure (not guilty, officer) for me and I regularly blast this for a singalong. Goes to show it takes all types, but I love the bouncy, twee and innocent nature of this one.
 
T

Trans

Guest
Yeah this is a really fun one for me and it is a lot of fun to sing along to. I love this song and play it to death. the would you like to note my inside leg very amusing coming from morrissey. I’ve no idea really who Saudi’s Shaw is aside from her connection to morrissey but I play his version all the time. Doesnt sound twee at all to me
 

Phranc & Open

Well-Known Member
Sandie is so sexy, I wish she and Morrissey had had something together back then. The song with it's Motown/Heatwave influences is really good. Great instrumentation.
 

TheSmiths_1985

Well-Known Member
It’s shit.
 

Verso

Well-Known Member
Even at the height of my Morrissey fandom, I always kind of smelled a rat when it came to the mythological status of this track. Great title, not much music to speak of. A lukewarm ripoff of “This Charming Man,” it’s funny to be reminded that this song barely crosses the two minute mark.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
It's songs like this that remind me, as good as Stephen Street was, it was essential that during the Viva Hate sessions Morrissey was tougher on his own songs than at almost any other point in his career. He jettisoned more songs than on any album, and it was a very good thing as the likes of this and some of the other demos wouldn't have improved the album in any way.

I still live in hope that I Don't Want Us to Finish will appear at some point, however...
 

Ketamine Sun

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Unlike most of Morrissey's songs,

much of it sounds like it could have been written by a million other acts of the period. Particularly the music which is distinctly frothy.

maybe, but not a ‘million’.


The lyrics feel a little unfinished and the "I'm so young" theme didn't entirely fit Sandie and her attempt at a comeback. I still quite like her version, though.

‘I’m so young’ ... does he mean the body or the mind ?


At best this could have been a passable b-side for Moz.

Yes, but it really didn’t fit the vibe of any of those singles. Which may be why it wasn’t used.


In the poll on the Hoffman board this ranked 250th from 264 solo songs.
 

Ketamine Sun

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...
It's songs like this that remind me, as good as Stephen Street was, it was essential that during the Viva Hate sessions Morrissey was tougher on his own songs than at almost any other point in his career. He jettisoned more songs than on any album, and it was a very good thing as the likes of this and some of the other demos wouldn't have improved the album in any way.

Yes, though the quality of the song surely had influence on his decision to put a song on VH or not. I feel he was well aware and took into consideration the vibe/feel of a song and the feel of the album as a whole, before considering it a candidate for inclusion on the album at the time.

I wonder how much, if any, of Street’s input was taken into consideration by Morrissey over the song listing, etc of VH.


I still live in hope that I Don't Want Us to Finish will appear at some point, however...
 
T

Trans

Guest
I guess I always thought that you try to be young when your old and the old are often lonely
 

Ketamine Sun

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An okay demo

Yes it is only a demo, and if it’s sound and potential were fully realized, regardless of hearing Sandie’s version with its horns, etc, then I think judgement placed on it would be much fairer. Though as it is, we unfortunately only have a demo, or to my ear, an unfinished production.
and song overall. The lyrics are tongue in cheek, obviously, considering the clichéd subject matter

and look forward to “Sing Your Life” singing “all the things you love...all the things you loathe”.
:unsure:
The music is another Motown stomper like “I Don’t Mind If You Forget Me”,

Interesting. I never thought of “I don’t mind ...” as a ‘Motown stomper’.

But “Please Help ..” does have a Motown/Charming Man pop sound and feel to it, that works for Sandie, taking into account her vocal delivery and background of 60’s pop.


though I tend to prefer that one more as it’s more fully realised. This fails mainly because it doesn’t have enough to transform a mediocre tune. Still, it sits comfortably alongside the other bonus tracks - but not unique in many or any ways.
Quite enjoy Sandie’s version, though.
6/10
 
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