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Years of Refusal

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iTunes Review

Years of Refusal offers no huge surprises but still manages a few swift kicks of wit and wisdom that only Morrissey can deliver with a straight face. His song titles often set the tone. You can feel the put-down coming in something titled "You Were Good In Your Time" or "It's Not Your Birthday Anymore," and sure enough Morrissey teases and preens with his usual self-deprecating humor cutting through the tougher than usual guitar attack. As he ages, Moz is turning up the amps and the aggression, preferring pummeling guitar chords over a melodious jangle and only bringing in the synths to further firm up the sound. It's not a bludgeoning approach but for Morrissey it's definitely a sign of defiance. He isn't about to go quietly, despite the successful sensitivity of the even-paced "That's How People Grow Up." The orchestrated grandeur of "When I Last Spoke To Carol," the ephemeral pop gloss of "All You Need Is Me," and the pomp anthem of "Something Is Squeezing My Skull" all prove Morrissey's still a big kid at heart and in his head.

Customer Reviews

Years of Refusal - It's Powerful!

Morrissey back with perhaps his greatest album - EVER! Many people are going to cling on with dear life to the older 'Vauxhal and I' and 'The Queen Is Dead', but I imagine the majority will realize that Morrissey has really outdone himself this time. I'm not sure if Jesus is going to forgive Moz for forgiving him, but here is a track by track review. 1) Something Is Squeezing My Skull - 5/5 Easily one of my all time favorites from this artist. 'Years of Refusal' opens with a track that lets us all know that Morrissey isn't playing around this time. While 'I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris' was a great first single, I must say that Skull would have been a much better choice. Hopefully we'll be hearing this song on the radio soon enough. 2) Mama Lay Softly On The Riverbed 5/5 This song isn't what I was expecting it to be. I've been listening to the live version of this song for a while and the recorded version is significantly different. However, the end result is an outstanding song with some of the better lyrics on the album. 3) Black Cloud 3/5 This song is easily the weakest on the album. It lacks focus and it sounds like Morrissey is trying to hard. Good bass, good guitar, good piano, but it's all mashed together in a sloppy mess. Regardless, it's not a BAD song. I heard somewhere that this might become one of the singles - please don't Moz! 4) I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris 5/5 Simple and sweet song - a perfect first single. 5) All You Need Is Me 5/5 I'm very angry that Morrissey put an OLD song on a NEW album, but I won't take off points from the song just because it's a reused one. I've been listening to this song for about a year now, and I think it may be one of the best songs Morrissey has ever put out. If you're one of those people who only buy a few good songs off the album, don't pass this one up. 6) When Last I Spoke To Carol 5/5 This track is a real breath of fresh air. It's nice to know that Morrissey isn't scared to try out new sounds. Not everybody is going to love Carol, but you have to at least respect the man for trying out something different. This is my favorite track on the record. 7) That's How People Grow Up 4/5 Another old song. This time it sounds more like a filler rather than a single, but it's still worthy of 4/5. 8) One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell 4/5 I wish Morrissey kept the trumpet in during the beginning of this song, but after a few listens I decided that maybe it doesn't need it. This song sounds like a good choice for a single. 9) It's Not Your Birthday Anymore 5/5 Long-time fans are going to think back to 'Unhappy Birthday' from The Smiths, but this song is a completely different monster. We see the return to the subject of sex (remember all the talk with 'Dear God Please Help Me'?) and the good old laugh-out-loud lyrics from Moz that we all love. It sounds to me like this song was written for the sole purpose of showing off Morrissey's outstanding singing ability. 11) Sorry Doesn't Help 4/5 Suedehead anybody? This song (as well as the next track) remind me of Southpaw Grammer, but they happen to be much better than anything that old album had to offer (except maybe 'The Teachers Are Afraid of The Pupils'). 12) I'm Ok By Myself 4/5 Morrissey ends his fantastic 'Years of Refusal' with a song that sounds like he's speaking straight from the heart. 'This might surprise you but I find I'm OK by myself'. Perhaps Morrissey doesn't just mind the fact that nobody wants his love, but he might even prefer being alone. 13) Shame Is The Name 3/5 Unless you're a real Morrissey fan, I'd recommend skipping this song. It a decent track, but it's not much compared to the rest of 'Years of Refusal'.

An album no one of his generation could ever think to make!!!

I bet Bowie, The Cure, and others are just stunned how his career remains relevent and influential. This album shows that while still staying true to the same old S.O.S, we can still see Moz in different layers. His voice has never, I mean never, sounded better. This is sung from the heart, something which cant be said of most of the Smiths catalogue...his voice continues to grow higher and more expansive as he closes in on 50. True gems here are Skull, Mama, Cloud, Paris, Sorry, hell... 10 out of the 12. Compared to the overview of all his solo-work, this makes one of his finest. Congrats, Moz, you deserve it...

Good job!!!

Familiar but not recycled. I am pleasantly surprised:)


Born: May 22, 1959 in Manchester, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

As the lead singer of the Smiths, arguably the most important indie band in Britain during the '80s, Morrissey's theatrical crooning and literate, poetic lyrics -- filled with romantic angst, social alienation, and cutting wit -- connected powerfully with a legion of similarly sensitive, disaffected youth. These fans turned the Smiths into stars in Britain, exerting tremendous pull over much of the country's guitar-based music for many years after their breakup, and even if the group remained underground...
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