Donald Trump and Brexit sparked 'Call the Comet' idea.
Ahead of the release of his new album 'Call the Comet' this summer, Johnny Marr opens up about the sort of themes that have inspired him to write lately, including how Donald Trump and Brexit spurred the album into motion. The first single from the album, 'The Tracers', drops this week.
Johnny Marr at the Q Awards
They may be the two major issues currently dividing Western society, but there's light at the end of the tunnel if we get an album out of it from The Smiths songwriter.
'I wouldn't call it a concept record', Johnny told Rolling Stone. 'But it's got a unifying theme going through it about the Earth welcoming a different intelligence from the cosmos to save us from our own plight. The title 'Call the Comet' is sort of a conscious plea for a new way.'
The plight in question is a futuristic 'alternative society' with a Donald Trump figure at the centre. After all, it was his election as president in 2016, coupled with the UK's decision to leave the European Union (Brexit), that planted the seed of a doomed future for Western society as the idea for 'Call the Comet'.
The song 'Bug' is a prime example. 'That song is about the virus of right-wing ideology that is spreading through the nervous system of the Western world', he revealed.
Johnny Marr kept inspired through projected imagery, which helped him keep the story of his album grounded in reality. 'Sometimes we'd have different news feeds projected onto the wall: Al Jazeera, Fox, the BBC and French news', he explained. 'Other times it would be wildlife films or just the swirling cosmos.'
He's set to perform the album in full for a series of intimate shows in New York, Toronto and Los Angeles later this year. Then in September he's planning to embark on a full tour including past hits and music from The Smiths.
'Call the Comet' will be released on June 15th 2018.