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Daniel Johns, Sufjan Stevens and Royal Headache Are to Join Morrissey at Vivid Live

To celebrate the lineup announcement we take a look back at Morrissey's 1988 debut 'Viva Hate'.
March 17, 2015, 11:16pm

With celebrated English performer Morrissey already slated as festival headliner, Vivid Live has announced the remainder of the 2015 line up with US songwriter Sufjan Stevens and former silverchair front man Daniel Johns making appearances at the Sydney Opera House between May 22 and June 8.

TV on the Radio, Bill Callahan, Squarepusher, The Preatures and The Drones doing a special ten-year anniversary performance of Wait Long By the River will also will be part of a line-up that focuses on icons and new Australian talent.

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Sydney labels and stores Future Classic, Repressed records, Astral People and Elefant Traks will curate showcases with line-ups including Flume, Royal Headache, Robert Owens and Joyride respectively.

Scoring Steven Patrick Morrissey as headliner is a coup for new festival director Ben Marshall, and is a worthy follow up to previous headliners Giorgio Moroder and Kraftwerk.

While his heyday was with the legendary Smiths in the late 1980s, the controversial Morrissey still maintains a cult following and his Vivid Live performance is expected to include a career-spanning set including material by the Smiths.

Almost 26-years to the day since it’s release, we take a look back at his solo debut Viva Hate, an album that contained some of the best of Moz’s career.

It Sounds Like a Smiths Record
The Smiths split in 1987, six months after the release of their swansong Strangeways, Here We Come. On March 14 1988, Moz dropped his debut. Obviously he didn’t have much time for new direction, personal or vision so he just wrote a record of moody songs that drew from British pop culture. Sound familiar?

Vini Reilly
Vini Reilly is no Johnny Marr but the guitarist from post-punkers the Durutti Column was enlisted to help out and help out he did. His understated but solid guitar work on tracks like "Late Night, Maudlin Street" and “Suedehead” helped make the album what it is.

Stephen Street
Street had been involved with and co-produced a number of Smiths' records including their final Strangeways Here We Come. After the break up of the band Morrissey contacted him (a copy of the letter to Street can be be viewed at the producer's official website) about working with him. Street played bass and recruited Vini Reilly while a session drummer, Andrew Paresi, completed the line-up.

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Unfortunatley Smith also went on to work with the Kaiser Chiefs and Babyshambles.

Education in Reverse
The first Australian LPs and cassettes were given the album's working title "Education In Reverse" instead of "Viva Hate". The title was corrected on later pressings. You have to admit that 'Viva Hate' has a lot more of a Morrissey ring about it though.

“Break Up the Family”

His voice breaking at the 2:25 minute mark could sum up this record and the rest of Morrissey’s career from here.

“Little Man, What Now”

“Down to a few lines
In the back page
Of a fabled annual
Oh, but I remembered you
I remembered you”

Flawed But Honest
Even Morrissey knew Viva Hate wasn’t his best record but in typical Moz fashion he was brutally honest in his appraisal. In an interview with Nick Kent published in The Face in 1990 Morrissey said of Viva Hate: "I feel it was more of an event than an achievement. I think the audience was simply relieved that I was still going on with living. That in itself was the celebration of Viva Hate! I've always been fiercely self-critical and… it wasn't perfect. There's at least six tracks on it that I'd now willingly bury in the nearest patch of soil. And place a large stone on top."

Vivid Live 2015 – Sydney Opera House, May 22- June 8. Tickets available from March 27

LIGHTING THE SAILS – UNIVERSAL EVERYTHING (UK)
AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Friday 22 May – Monday 8 June
TIME: 6pm – Midnight
VENUE: Sydney Opera House Sails
TICKET PRICE: Free

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AN EVENING WITH MORRISSEY (UK)
AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Tuesday 26 – Wednesday 27 May, Saturday 30 – Sunday 31 May
TIME: Doors 7:30pm | Performance 8:00pm
VENUE: Concert Hall
TICKET PRICE: From $109+bf
SUFJAN STEVENS (USA)
AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Friday 22– Monday 25 May
TIME: Doors 7:30pm | Performance 8:00pm
VENUE: Concert Hall
TICKET PRICE: From $69+bf

DANIEL JOHNS (AUS)
ALBUM PREMIERE, AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Thursday 28 – Friday 29 May
TIME: Doors 7:30pm | Performance 8:00pm
VENUE: Concert Hall
TICKET PRICE: From $59+bf

FCX – 10 YEARS OF FUTURE CLASSIC (AUS) feat. Flume, Flight Facilities, Seekae, George Maple
& more
AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Friday 29 – Saturday 30 May
TIME: Doors 4:00pm
VENUE: Northern Broadwalk
TICKET PRICE: $129+bf

TV ON THE RADIO (USA)
SYDNEY EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Monday 8 – Tuesday 9 May
TIME: Doors 8:30pm | Performance 9:00pm
VENUE: Concert Hall
TICKET PRICE: From $64+bf

BILL CALLAHAN (USA)
SYDNEY EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Thursday 28 – Friday 29 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: From $49+bf

AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE DATE: Friday 22 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: From $39+bf

THE DRONES WAIT LONG BY THE RIVER…. 10TH ANNIVERSARY + EXCLUSIVE ALBUM PREVIEW (AUS)
AUSTRALIAN EXCLUSIVE
DATE: Sunday 24 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: $35+bf

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THE PREATURES (AUS) DATE: Wednesday 27 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: $35+bf

REPRESSED RECORDS PRESENTS ROYAL HEADACHE & MORE (AUS) DATE: Saturday 23 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: $35+bf

MELBOURNE SKA ORCHESTRA WITH SPECIAL GUESTS PROJECT COLLECTIVE SKA (AUS) DATE: Saturday 30 May
TIME: Doors 7:00pm | Performance 7:30pm
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre
TICKET PRICE: $35+bf

DRESS UP ATTACK! FOR CHILDREN AND GROWN UPS (AUS) DATE: Sunday 31 May
TIME: 10:00am
VENUE: Joan Sutherland Theatre and Foyers
TICKET PRICE: $29+bf

RED BULL MUSIC ACADEMY PRESENTS THE STUDIO FREE OPENING NIGHT FEAT. ONRA (FRA)
DATE: Friday 22 May
TIME: 9:00pm
VENUE: Studio
TICKET PRICE: Free. Registration essential.

MAD RACKET FEAT. MATTHEW HERBERT (LIVE)/ ZOOTIE / JIMMI JAMES / KEN CLOUD / SIMON CALDWELL
DATE: Saturday 23 May
TIME: 9:00pm VENUE: Studio TICKET PRICE: $40

GOODGOD MINCETERIA! FEAT. HOUSE OF LADOSHA / ZANZIBAR CHANEL / VICTORIA KIM /
SLÉ FEAT. BHENJI RĀ DATE: Friday 29 May TIME: 9:00pm
VENUE: Studio
TICKET PRICE: $40

ASTRAL PEOPLE FEAT. ROBERT OWENS (FINGERS, INC.) / AMIR ALEXANDER / BEN FESTER / PREACHA & MORE
DATE: Saturday 30 May
TIME: 9:00pm VENUE: Studio
TICKET PRICE: $40

ELEFANT TRAKS FEAT. JOYRIDE (LIVE) / JAYTEEHAZARD (EP LAUNCH) / DJ MK-1 (UNIVERSAL ZULU NATION) / ADIT (HORRORSHOW) / DGGZ (THE HERD)& MORE DATE: Sunday 31 May
TIME: 6:00pm
VENUE: Studio
TICKET PRICE: $40