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With One Finished Album in Limbo, Morrissey Says He’s Starting Work on Another

Artist will begin working on 'Without Music the World Dies' next month, while the completed 'Bonfire of Teenagers' remains in limbo
(Photo: Ian Gavan / Getty Images)

Morrissey‘s album Bonfire of Teenagers has been finished for more than a year-and-a-half, but after the artist said last month that Capitol Records had removed the project from its February release calendar for unexplained reasons, he’s making plans to return to the studio.

According to a post on his website, Morrissey will spend January and February recording Without Music the World Dies, his fifth collaboration with producer Joe Chiccarelli. The 12 new tracks were written by Morrissey with longtime bandmates Alain Whyte, Jesse Tobias, and Gustavo Manzur. Casting further doubt on Morrissey’s ongoing relationship with Capitol, the post says, “There is no record label as yet for the project, and ways to attain global distribution are being researched.”

“The songs, of course, are magnificent, and even the relentless difficulties we have experienced recently are not enough to kill us off,” Morrissey says, without elaborating on what “relentless difficulties” he’s referencing.

The Bonfire of Teenagers saga is made all the more confusing by the fact that, despite removing it from the upcoming release schedule, Capitol last month released a single from the album, the highly Smiths-indebted “Rebels Without Applause.” A label spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment from SPIN.

Bonfire of Teenagers was produced by Andrew Watt and powered by his core band of session collaborators Josh Klinghoffer and Chad Smith. Smith’s Red Hot Chili Peppers bandmate Flea and Tobias also play on Bonfire, while Iggy Pop and Miley Cyrus contribute guest vocals. Smith and Klinghoffer also play on Pop’s own new album, Every Loser, produced by Watt and due out Jan. 6.