Speedway

Anaesthesine

Angel of Distemper
Thank you for the link: an articulate, heartfelt appreciation of a great song that has always defied analysis. It goes straight to the heart of Morrissey's peculiar art, and the man's operatic (and sometimes unnerving) ability to simultaneously reveal and conceal all.

In certain moods I find Speedway to be overly self-indulgent. In certain moods I find it heartbreaking and cathartic. I've always thought of the "hammer" as not only a judge's gavel, but the pneumatic killing machine that has sent countless livestock animals to their deaths (an idea foreshadowed by the "chainsaw" sound at the beginning). The whole thing is elevated by the self-deprecating, weary, resigned humor that lurks just under the surface of all his best work.

Had this, indeed, been the last we ever heard from Morrissey the world would be a poorer place, but no one could ever hope to pen (or sing) a greater swan song.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Had this, indeed, been the last we ever heard from Morrissey the world would be a poorer place, but no one could ever hope to pen (or sing) a greater swan song.

I thougth about this period in Moz' life recently and I honestly believe he had the intention to stop and do something else but then life got in the way as it always does. And then I remembered a quote from Moz himself from 2009 which describes this situation quite well, I think: "Every hour of every day is a twist for me, I find. Reductantly, I pray to gods and forces that there will be no twists in life, but it's not to be. Life leads me, I don't lead it."
 
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Anonymous

Guest
"In certain moods I find Speedway to be overly self-indulgent. In certain moods I find it heartbreaking and cathartic." i can agree with this as im often split about how i feel about it. the music is always great but as to the sentiment or lyrical substance im always back and forth
 

Chip

Member
I don't know if it his best song, but I always felt like, lyrically at least, it was the quintessential Morrissey song. The lyrics strike a very contradictory tone--on the one hand, Morrissey clearly has a strong sense of persecution, and on the other hand, he somewhat acknowledges that it's at least partially his fault. Morrissey in a nutshell. Probably all of us in a nutshell.
 

Uncleskinny

It's all good
Subscriber
There's an alternative view that I've read more than once that explains the song as from the viewpoint of Oscar Wilde in the dock.

P.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Surely it is the noise of speedway bikes revving the engines,rather than a chainsaw ?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I've always found shades of Jake in the lyrics.

It was very powerful on the UK tour.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
I've always found shades of Jake in the lyrics.

Well, yes, I didn't know speedway = cruising for gay sex; you live and learn...

'Bit silly though that petulant "I could've mentioned your name!" line now, isn't it...Considering...

Not my favourite track or even one I like, but still a beaut when compared to say, the dud that makes Ukraine rhyme with pain (but, curiously, not rain, or Spain). If you find "Speedway" self-indulgent, well "at least remember" it's not yet Fuddy-Duddy who thinks he's so very politically aware he's going to sing you a mock-lullaby to tell you off because you vote, you silly Billy.

Speedway. It could still go both ways then. Noone foresaw themselves as completely jaggerized in Murcia in 2015, I bet.

"True"...
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Well, yes, I didn't know speedway = cruising for gay sex; you live and learn...

'Bit silly though that petulant "I could've mentioned your name!" line now, isn't it...Considering...

Not my favourite track or even one I like, but still a beaut when compared to say, the dud that makes Ukraine rhyme with pain (but, curiously, not rain, or Spain). If you find "Speedway" self-indulgent, well "at least remember" it's not yet Fuddy-Duddy who thinks he's so very politically aware he's going to sing you a mock-lullaby to tell you off because you vote, you silly Billy.

Speedway. It could still go both ways then. Noone foresaw themselves as completely jaggerized in Murcia in 2015, I bet.

"True"...


Did I say it's a of cruising for sex? No. Jake was a very important person in his life at that time.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
i’ve always thought speedway might be about Johnny Marr, at least partially imo (and no, i'm not one of those people who thinks every Moz song is about Johnny)
 

Orson Swells

Well-Known Member
i’ve always thought speedway might be about Johnny Marr, at least partially imo (and no, i'm not one of those people who thinks every Moz song is about Johnny)

Well, he does sing "in your own strange way" which seems a fairly obvious reference - and, apparently, J Marr once worked at a speedway.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
enjoyed the piece. thanks for sharing: nice writing about a beautiful song.
 

Detritus

Teenage Lightning
Great read.

I'm a big Dennis Cooper fan and it was a thrill to see this featured on his blog (which is very, very good---Morrissey post aside).
 
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Anonymous

Guest
and, apparently, J Marr once worked at a speedway.

Didn't know that either.
So basically that song could be about a lot of people, except people who have a strong distaste for motorised vehicles.
- Phew! :)
 
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