Tramlines Saturday 2019: Johnny Marr @ Nulty’s Main Stage
It’s become increasingly difficult to listen to and enjoy songs by 80s indie titans The Smiths since frontman Morrissey’s open support of a far-right party and his increasing output of bigoted and racist comments.
After wearing a badge in support of British fascists For Britain on an international stage, the singer went on to defend his stance by saying that ‘all people prefer their own race’. Not in keeping with the once-deemed ‘elder statesman of the overlooked outcasts’.
However, thankfully there was no trepidation or feelings of ill will when it came to the The Smith’s guitarist, manager and musical force Jonny Marr’s set on Nulty’s Main Stage.
The imperiously cool Mancunian played a set equally split between his own material and covers of songs he’d been at the heart of (which includes, as well as The Smiths; Modest Mouse, The The and The Cribs) and it was one ultimately of jubilation.
With his Fender Jaguar slung round his shoulders, Jonny flitted through songs from his most recent record Call The Comet, including lead single ‘Hi Hello’, and songs from his back catalogue.
Unsurprisingly it was the likes of ‘Bigmouth Strikes Again’ and ‘How Soon Is Now?’ that sent the crowd into raptures, but that’s to take nothing away from his solo work, particularly ‘Easy Money’, which shows that there’s plenty of life left in the jangly old dog yet.
An extended version of ‘There Is A Light That Never Goes Out’ to close the set had the crowd in awe and showed that we don’t all burn out before we should.