On Wednesday, 12th of October, hundreds of people gathered in Senayan GBK Sport Complex. It was raining hard in the afternoon, so the ground was pretty muddy. But they don’t seem to mind having mud on their shoes. They came to see the adorable Morrissey. Some have watched his performance in 2012 and for some, it was their first time. It was still around 5 pm but there was already a very long line full of people, trying to get in to the front row. We saw a lot of people holding a Gladioli flower, Morrissey’s favourite.
As we all know, Morrissey is pretty strict on every concert as he doesn’t allow people to sell meat products in and around the venue. Not only that, smoking is strictly prohibited. He’d walk out of the show if he sees someone selling meat products, smoking or doing any non-vegan activity.
The clock shows that it’s already 6 pm, which means the gate is already open. We can feel monsters crumbling inside our bellies, because it’s already diner time. So we got inside and expecting for any kind of vegan or vegetarian food. But guess what? No food at all, only drinks! The crew said that it was the artist’s request. As far as we know, Morrissey only requested that the event serves no meat at all. Not no food at all. We remember at the 2012 show there were some vegetarian food sold. So we had to go really far outside the venue just to get something to eat.
We have to past two screening gates to get inside the venue. I saw and heard a lot of people had their things taken like perfume, cigarettes (of course, it’s a non-smoking event), umbrella, ointment and many more. And they didn’t give our things back. Also, we’re not allowed to use backpacks. But too bad, the event organizer didn’t provide us with any cloakroom in the venue. They just told us to put our things in our vehicle. They should have think about those who just got back from work and didn’t bring or have any cars to put their things in.
Around 7.30 pm, there’s an half-hour video montage screened. It’s basically a random clip that includes James Dean, Allen Ginsberg, Iggy and the Stooges, New York Dolls, The Sex Pistols and a lot more. Things that Morrissey fancy.
Finally the show started at 8 pm. He came to the stage with the band and did a ritual before performing. They stood facing each others and bowed down to each other. After that they went to their instruments. Morrissey, of course, took the microphone. “My heart, my heart, my heart Jakarta” was the first thing he said that night. “Suedehead” was the opening song. Everyone went mad, jumping and singing. Next was another hit, “Almamaters”, followed by “Everyday is Like Sunday”. What a combo! While on “Let Me Kiss You”, Morrissey tore his blue shirt off and tossed it to the crowd. After that he went backstage quickly and changed into a black shirt.
During the doomy, martial “Ganglord,” a violent footage appeared on the screen, clips of police brutality edited together into a nightmarish collection that unspooled as he sang, “the police are kicking their way into my house”. He played “First of the Gang to Die” in a semi-acoustic version. Not only singing his old and new songs, Morrissey did a cover for The Ramones’ song “Judy is a Punk”. He also played The Smiths’ hit, “How Soon Is Now?” with Bruce Lee displayed on the screen. As a hardcore animal-rights defender, a video of a view in a slaughterhouse was played as he sang The Smiths’ “Meat is Murder”. He even changed the lyrics “eat, kill, eat, kill, murder” into “eat, kill, KFC, murder”. The screen shows “Apa Alasanmu Sekarang? Daging adalah Pembunuhan” (What’s your reason now? Meat is murder) in big letterings.
After “Meat is Murder”, Morrissey and the band went offstage. The crowd expected an encore, so everyone stayed while still standing in the mud, screaming “we want more!”. No signal from Morrissey to come back to the stage. Instead, all we see was the crew packing up all the gears, the lights went on and we had to face the truth that he isn’t coming back to play encore. According to the setlist that Arian13 got, he’s supposed to play another Smiths’ song “What She Said”.
A lot of people seem upset. No ‘thank you’, no ‘goodbye’. Such an anti-climax ending. He ended the show with a gruesome gory animal video. Some said that Morrissey was in a bad mood that night. Another said that he saw someone’s smoking. We heard many rumours about why he just walked out like that. No one knows why, but we must say that it was a great show. On his physical condition, that night he had shown us a total powerful performance. 19 amazing songs was played. The sound was so great. He joked a lot using his dark humour and had a lot of interactions with the crowds. And most of all, he came back to Jakarta. He didn’t cancel the show like what happened in Tokyo. Isn’t it something to be grateful at instead of complaining over the small things?
Well, thank you Morrissey for coming back to Jakarta! We really had great fun. And thanks to KiosPlay to make it happen.
All images courtesy of KiosPlay