Ex-Smiths guitarist reveals lyrical inspirations for new album
Julian Marszalek

10:40 20th February 2017

Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr has stated that he has no intention of shying away from the weightier matters of the day – especially in light of the election of US president Donald Trump and the Brexit referendum.

Speaking at the NME Awards 2017 where he was presenting erstwhile collaborators Pet Shop Boys with the Godlike Genius Award, the one-time Smiths plank spanker said: ““I don’t think it needs to be left outside. [I don’t agree] with this idea that pop music, culture or any of the arts shouldn’t tamper with politics.

“If you’ve got something to say, you should say it. If you’ve got a platform, and a way of saying it then by all means do so. On the one hand, I don’t really believe in hectoring people, but things are so serious and so extreme that a little bit of hectoring and a little bit of passion might not be such a bad thing.

“It’s not really a time for being meek and sitting on the fence, but that’s everybody’s own personal choice."

Marr is currently working on his third solo album – his first since 2014’s Playland – and lyrically he describes it as being “…a certain kind of attempt at making a connection with an overwhelming barrage of seemingly surreal events and information and how we’re all dealing with it – and how I’m dealing with it really. It’s a psychedelic world out there, whether we like it or not, and not in a good way.”

Photo: Jon Shard