Morrissey A-Z: "(The) Ordinary Boys"

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member


Today's song is this Morrissey/Street composition, from the Viva Hate album. (And then removed from later reissues of that album...)

What do we think of this one?
 

The.Truth.

about Ruth
Happy going nowhere, just around here in their rattling cars,
So he drove me home in the van
Hailstones, driven home in a car -no brakes? I don't mind

A 10 from an album of 10's.
 

Carlisle baz

Cock of the north
The weakest song on VH in my view,
It’s not a bad song
Just I never really play it..

Like the lyrics about being trapped in the cold small streets ....
 

BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
An amazing song. Like so many on Viva Hate it's steeped in a sense of nostalgia and it conveys that sense of feeling different so beautifully. The melody of this still rattles around in my brain regularly, 31 years later.
 

Nerak

Reverse Ferret
He said this in 84 - which might be relevant:

20210711_074152.jpg


It's from an interview with The Advocate.

TheAdvocateOct1984.jpg
 

SuedeMoz

Well-Known Member
It takes me right back to 1988... from that era where regardless of what the song is 'about' Morrissey just makes it feel like he's speaking to you. It's an absolute shame that this was excluded from the Viva Hate reissue. 9/10.
 
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gordyboy9

rip roaring,free scoring,never boring, celtic.
a song iv not heard for a good few years,nice easy going sound,voice is good on this,lyrics are fine,a song wothout a chorus,
7 ordinary girls/10 ordinary boys.
 

Phranc & Open

two-timer
No one on earth would remove a good, solid album track for a rough, not bad, demo on a reissue. The answer lies in the lyrics, imho. Ordinary Boys never bothered me. It belongs to that start-up period, it's lightweight but enjoyable.
 

Flibberty

Well-Known Member
One of the lesser songs on Viva Hate, but it certainly didn't deserve to be removed from the reissue.

The lyrics are a little bit obvious and the music is a tad dull.

In the poll on the Hoffman board it ranked 187th from 264 solo songs.
 

This Charming Bowie

Welcome to this knockabout world
Sadly, this was never my favourite from Viva. The song is fine - plods along nicely, with some admittedly beautiful chords. The lyrics are probably the best thing about it, TBH - but the album has stronger ones to offer still. Not that replacing it with a demo on the reissue was a good idea: I think that those were handled poorly. The album should have remained as it was, with extra tracks placed on a separate disc. So, yes, neither great nor awful - just sitting uncomfortably in the middle.
5/10
 

Nerak

Reverse Ferret
It takes me right back to 1988... from that era where regardless of what the song is 'about' Morrissey just makes it feel like he's speaking to you. It's an absolute shame that this was excluded from the Viva Hate reissue. 9/10.

Yeah, I think he's a very universal writer.

But that prat from Gene cited this song as the moment Morrissey turned on ordinary people - I think it was more likely to be the other way round. If anything.

20210711_091357.jpg
 

Carlisle baz

Cock of the north
I feel bad that this song was ripped of the re issue and tossed away like a spunky olde sock...

so I’ve decided to re review it....

This is one of my favourite songs from Viva Hate 😬😬

Should have been the third single🤡

It’s definitely a true Moz
Masterpiece 🌊🌊🌊
 

Famous when dead

Vulgarian
Moderator
In order for 'so lucky...' to be a Kylie reference, I believe this puts the song's writing at very early '88 rather than late '87.
Which is interesting given Viva Hate's release date - that would put it at odds with what's known about the recording sessions.
It was definitely asserted at the time to be a dig/nod at/to her as that was something an 'ordinary' boy (aka 'Kevins') would listen to.
It would be especially apt given the 'damage' the PWL label was doing to the indie chart (forever changing it). Maybe just a coincidence, but it's a big one.
Any Kylie fans remember if her song aired much before its release date (December '87), as that would help explain it?
Why he removed it on the later version of VH and why he's not given it a live airing - who knows?
Still enjoy the song.
Regards,
FWD.
 

Mozmar

Well-Known Member
After the manic track from yesterday, we're back into calmer waters with this early Moz wonderfully beautiful plodder.
I've always considered this to be more about societal observation than anything else, with 'ordinary' people never really experiencing life beyond their housing estates (which was an actual thing back in the day), & there seems to be a little sneering from the narrator in the reference to (cheap) supermarket clothes, happy going nowhere, rattling cars, et al, & the associated indicators of regional poverty. The track itself is totally adorable with sleepy drums, lazy piano, plucking violins, & bouncing bass. I love each & every fret/string squeak.
Favourite lyric:

"When those empty fools
Tried to change you, and claim you
For the lair of their ordinary world"


Sublime.
 
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BookishBoy

Well-Known Member
Yeah, I think he's a very universal writer.

But that prat from Gene cited this song as the moment Morrissey turned on ordinary people - I think it was more likely to be the other way round. If anything.

View attachment 74059
That's just such lazy analysis, isn't it? Could it be possible (shock horror!) to be a working class writer, and to write about working class experience, without having to extol the virtues of all aspects of working class society?! Especially when one's lived experience of that life is of having been an outcast in many ways...
 

Famous when dead

Vulgarian
Moderator
That's just such lazy analysis, isn't it? Could it be possible (shock horror!) to be a working class writer, and to write about working class experience, without having to extol the virtues of all aspects of working class society?! Especially when one's lived experience of that life is of having been an outcast in many ways...
He was always fringe.
The "Kevin" thing was real at the time.
It was a huge social sub-group and he would be aware of "Kevins & Sharons" (terms to "designate a working-class or lower-middle-class youth without taste or sophistication").
The majority of 'working class' people would eat up anything on the PWL.
Him being on the periphery and making observations about such 'ordinariness' is exactly why I gravitated towards him.
I believe Rossiter is conflating two different types of people to sustain his 'outrage'.
Regards,
FWD.
 
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