"World Peace..." review by Michael Alarcon - Outsideleft

Sheesh. If they're gonna trash the album, they could at least have some balls about it and say Morrissey should be held accountable for his own creative decisions... especially considering this is some of the most adventurous and interesting MUSIC the band's come up with in a long time.
 

marred

Member
"Again, this album isn't horrible, it's just average with very few splashes of excitement."

I think that is as fair an appraisal of the album as when I said pretty much the self same thing the day after it leaked.

It's always amusing to hear people claim those who are not fully on board with the Morrissey Of The Now are trying to relive/revive the Smiths, when they themselves hear Ringleaders and Refusal and inexplicably seem to want more.

Personally, I'd prefer the man who was a major creative force behind Hatful of Hollow, Meat Is Murder, The Queen Is Dead and Strangeways to capture some of that magic again rather that claim The Youngest Was The Most Loved should have been number one across the known universe.

I don't think the author is unfair on Tobias, if anything he is too fair on Morrissey. The lyrical content is distinctly average with few of those clever flourishes we associate with him. I suppose you could argue the music as supplied failed to pique Morrissey's muse sufficiently, but the buck still stops with Morrissey himself.

People have been saying Tobias should go for many years, but we are now reaching the point where his dismissal would be irrelevant, because Morrissey may now quite possibly have released his last album. Harvest will decide at some time in the next couple of months. The poor buggers must be wondering what the hell they got themselves into.

Or maybe not? Time will tell. I highly doubt Harvest went into a Morrissey deal with blinders on. You mention you find it amusing that those who are not fully on board are viewed as wanting to relive the smiths and then you go on about capturing the magic of the smiths again. That magic has been captured, put on record and still thrives to this day. It will always be there, but it isn't going to be repeated.

World Peace was never going to be Viva Hate part two or the lost spirit of Vauxhall And I. Main reason being those albums have already been made. It's time to move on. btw I can actually hear elements of Viva Hate and Vauxhall in the World Peace :)

Did you just spit your coffee then?

I think I can guess who gave you those 3 thumbs.
 
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esskay

Member
I guess it's slightly interesting to hear whether yet another random guy on the internet likes or dislikes the album, but no one capable of writing something as stupid as "Musically, they're almost waltz-like" can really call themselves a music writer.
 

Agharta

New Member
I guess it's slightly interesting to hear whether yet another random guy on the internet likes or dislikes the album, but no one capable of writing something as stupid as "Musically, they're almost waltz-like" can really call themselves a music writer.


According to the website:

M.E.A. has been writing for a paycheck since 1996. He published titmouse, the critically renowned fanzine that surprisingly got a minor distribution deal outside of the US. He wrote Boy About Town for the Orange County Weekly, the only memorable element of the column being its title nicked from an old b-side by The Jam. Since then, he's written for the OC Register, Time-Warner, Angeleno, and other publications as well as a handful of dot.coms. He's currently the managing editor for POPLife magazine and he's trying to round up his former band, The Misanthropes, in which he played sloppy rhythm guitar, in hopes of a reunion and cash in on the garage band movement that they preceded by nearly ten years. His hobbies include revenge and collecting Smiths memorabilia.


He sounds like a nice bloke.

I don't see anyone questioning the professional qualifications of any of the critics who have written positive reviews of the album.
 
One of the most misjudged Moz album reviews I've read in a long time and that's saying something, the guys going to feel pretty foolish when he looks back at this in a years time! when you break your legs don't come running to me!
 

Johnny Barleycorn

Well-Known Member
Or maybe not? Time will tell. I highly doubt Harvest went into a Morrissey deal with blinders on. You mention you find it amusing that those who are not fully on board are viewed as wanting to relive the smiths and then you go on about capturing the magic of the smiths again. That magic has been captured, put on record and still thrives to this day. It will always be there, but it isn't going to be repeated.

World Peace was never going to be Viva Hate part two or the lost spirit of Vauxhall And I. Main reason being those albums have already been made. It's time to move on. btw I can actually hear elements of Viva Hate and Vauxhall in the World Peace :)

Did you just spit your coffee then?

I think I can guess who gave you those 3 thumbs.

I don't see wanting him to recapture the magic of the Smiths as demanding a recreation of the Smiths. A tune here and there might be nice, but as he no longer works with those who can supply such things on a regular basis he tailors his poetry to fit, or, as happens repeatedly on World Peace, not to fit.

When you buy a Morrissey album you expect certain basic things. That wonderful voice, original ideas encapsulated in beautifully constructed words, and a hook. On World Peace he supplies the first, but there is little evidence of the others.

I've just wandered into to town listening to it in its entirety for the fifth or sixth time. The songs that have verses don't have a chorus, and the songs with a chorus lack verses. Staircase comes closest to being remarkable, until the nine syllable title gets in the way.

I dare say there are Paul McCartney fans who heard Mull of Kintyre for the first time and thanked God he had at last moved away from Get Back, Helter Skelter and Back In The USSR. It doesn't make them right.

Great artists rarely eclipse the music that made them famous. In fact, I can't think of a single one. There was a time when Morrissey seemed like he might, and there have been flashes of brilliance. Just not recently. He's been treading water for a decade. Now he is up to his ears.
 

VivaGil

i've got no charm
I think in the 90's he did as good as the smiths. the music wasn't as good but his lyrics and voice made up for it. it's just great music.
 

Johnny Barleycorn

Well-Known Member
One of the most misjudged Moz album reviews I've read in a long time and that's saying something, the guys going to feel pretty foolish when he looks back at this in a years time! when you break your legs don't come running to me!

I don't understand how living with this album for twelve months could be in anyway less disappointing than twelve days.

Five Leaves Less matured with time. In The Aeroplane Over The Sea matured with time. I'm not sure World Peace comes within even a hundred miles in terms of quality with either of them.

It's an OK album. To pretend it is in any way a return to anything approaching top form is simply wishful thinking.
 

esskay

Member


According to the website:

M.E.A. has been writing for a paycheck since 1996. He published titmouse, the critically renowned fanzine that surprisingly got a minor distribution deal outside of the US. He wrote Boy About Town for the Orange County Weekly, the only memorable element of the column being its title nicked from an old b-side by The Jam. Since then, he's written for the OC Register, Time-Warner, Angeleno, and other publications as well as a handful of dot.coms. He's currently the managing editor for POPLife magazine and he's trying to round up his former band, The Misanthropes, in which he played sloppy rhythm guitar, in hopes of a reunion and cash in on the garage band movement that they preceded by nearly ten years. His hobbies include revenge and collecting Smiths memorabilia.


He sounds like a nice bloke.

I don't see anyone questioning the professional qualifications of any of the critics who have written positive reviews of the album.

Well, in a generally boneheaded review, "Musically, they're almost waltz-like" still sticks out as the most perfectly compressed example of stupidity. It's immaterial to me whether it's a positive or bad review: the phrase is so comically dumb in many ways. First, just syntactically, "almost waltz-like" is tautological nonsense - he means to write "waltz-like" or "almost waltzes". Second, in terms of meaning, "almost waltz-like" is also nonsense: something is either a waltz or it is not. Third, as it happens, Istanbul and the title track (the only two songs I have heard of the four he claims resemble waltzes) are categorically not waltzes. Fourth, the pointless modifier "Musically" is sloppy - in what other sense could he have been talking (incorrectly) about waltzes?

He probably is a nice bloke, and I wasn't really intending to bash him. Shame that he's been trying to do this for nearly 20 years without getting anywhere and still hasn't taken the hint though.
 

Agharta

New Member
Well, in a generally boneheaded review, "Musically, they're almost waltz-like" still sticks out as the most perfectly compressed example of stupidity. It's immaterial to me whether it's a positive or bad review: the phrase is so comically dumb in many ways. First, just syntactically, "almost waltz-like" is tautological nonsense - he means to write "waltz-like" or "almost waltzes". Second, in terms of meaning, "almost waltz-like" is also nonsense: something is either a waltz or it is not. Third, as it happens, Istanbul and the title track (the only two songs I have heard of the four he claims resemble waltzes) are categorically not waltzes. Fourth, the pointless modifier "Musically" is sloppy - in what other sense could he have been talking (incorrectly) about waltzes?

He probably is a nice bloke, and I wasn't really intending to bash him. Shame that he's been trying to do this for nearly 20 years without getting anywhere and still hasn't taken the hint though.

Fair play, thanks for the clarification, I appreciate that. I would agree with you entirely that "Musically, they're almost waltz-like" is full of syntactic and sense issues. On a general level, I assume he is referring to the tempo of the songs more than anything, since he references that earlier in the paragraph.
 

Agharta

New Member
I don't see wanting him to recapture the magic of the Smiths as demanding a recreation of the Smiths. A tune here and there might be nice, but as he no longer works with those who can supply such things on a regular basis he tailors his poetry to fit, or, as happens repeatedly on World Peace, not to fit.

When you buy a Morrissey album you expect certain basic things. That wonderful voice, original ideas encapsulated in beautifully constructed words, and a hook. On World Peace he supplies the first, but there is little evidence of the others.

I've just wandered into to town listening to it in its entirety for the fifth or sixth time. The songs that have verses don't have a chorus, and the songs with a chorus lack verses. Staircase comes closest to being remarkable, until the nine syllable title gets in the way.

I dare say there are Paul McCartney fans who heard Mull of Kintyre for the first time and thanked God he had at last moved away from Get Back, Helter Skelter and Back In The USSR. It doesn't make them right.

Great artists rarely eclipse the music that made them famous. In fact, I can't think of a single one. There was a time when Morrissey seemed like he might, and there have been flashes of brilliance. Just not recently. He's been treading water for a decade. Now he is up to his ears.

Amen. Spot on.
 

Surface

Vegan Cro’s parents regret the condom splitting
I don't see wanting him to recapture the magic of the Smiths as demanding a recreation of the Smiths. A tune here and there might be nice, but as he no longer works with those who can supply such things on a regular basis he tailors his poetry to fit, or, as happens repeatedly on World Peace, not to fit.

When you buy a Morrissey album you expect certain basic things. That wonderful voice, original ideas encapsulated in beautifully constructed words, and a hook. On World Peace he supplies the first, but there is little evidence of the others.

I've just wandered into to town listening to it in its entirety for the fifth or sixth time. The songs that have verses don't have a chorus, and the songs with a chorus lack verses. Staircase comes closest to being remarkable, until the nine syllable title gets in the way.

I dare say there are Paul McCartney fans who heard Mull of Kintyre for the first time and thanked God he had at last moved away from Get Back, Helter Skelter and Back In The USSR. It doesn't make them right.

Great artists rarely eclipse the music that made them famous. In fact, I can't think of a single one. There was a time when Morrissey seemed like he might, and there have been flashes of brilliance. Just not recently. He's been treading water for a decade. Now he is up to his ears.

I would have agreed on your comments about artists rarely eclipse the past, however I got the new James album the other week and I was blown away. Am listing to the new Morrissey album as I type and am currently up to Oboe track and have to say not once have I had that tingle through my body like I get when I hear a great song.

On the new James album, I had that feeing on each of the first 3 tracks, also the new Bunnymen album has some amazing moments, so other artist are delivering terrific new music in their fifties.

Afraid to say World Piece isn't doing much for me at the moment
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
this review seems was written by alain whyte, Im not sure if this guy was listening carefully the album, I think "Earth is the loneliest planet" is a good song, reminds me "Heaven Knows I'm..." because the music is so melancholy and the lyrics are so true and sad, I like the new style of music and thank God this album is different to all he done before (All you need is me, that's how people, I'm Throwing my arms, Action is my middle name, etc)
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
A particularly interesting and well written read. I can't say I agree with everything that has been stated (will any of us, ever?) but the issues that rang true for me:
I too think Jesse Tobias is a dreadful songwriter and an even worse live performer.
Morrissey is in need of a complimentary new musician. It is not Gustavo Manzur. The flamenco guitar is interesting in places but becomes overpowering - just like J Tobias' penchant for cock rock.
The art work, although not his worst, is not up to par.
This is not a great lp. It is a decent lp.

I have been looking forward to this release for a while. I am relieved that the cock rock period seems to be (excuse the parlance) behind him. I believe there are glimmers of genius on this lp and more than a couple great songs. I'm rather delighted.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Long time lurker finally chiming in.

Sadly, this review seems to be pretty close to the mark. It isn't a great album, it's an average album with a couple of almost hits.

As for the "Musically almost waltz-like" controversy on the first 4 songs, I have to agree. I think we're splitting hairs with the "What is a waltz" though. I personally am fine with a slow song as an opening track. I'm fine with the first two songs being slow. But four slow throwaways that might fit better as b-sides? That's a lot to ask for a fan that's waited 5 years for a new release.

This album has too slow of a 40% ramp-up and it never "ramps-up" anywhere. A good album has a beginning, middle, and end and most artists take precious care in where how their songs are ordered on the tracklisting. Morrissey has always treated his tracklistings with a cinematic scope.

If you look at his first 7 solo albums, there was always

1) A promising opener (You're Gonna Need Someone on Your Side, Teachers are Afraid of the Pupils, Now My Heart is Full, You Know I Couldn't Last)...

2) A few peaks in the middle (Suedehead, the 4 middle songs in Your Arsenal, First of the Gang)

3) The dramatic dropping of the curtain in the closing song (Speedway, There's a Place in Hell, Margaret on the Guillotine)

4) The odd filler (Asian Rut).

With WPINOYB, there's no structure in the album as a whole.

A reader early in this thread mentioned listening to the recent James release and getting those familiar tingles upon first listen--the same tingles we all got with albums from the initial listens to the first half of Morrissey's catalog.

This review states it fairly clear: Morrissey's voice is there, his songwriters are not. Tobias and Gustavo will never challenge Morrissey when it comes to turning in music that will inspire him to greatness. Remember, the music comes before the lyrics for Moz.

Boz used to inspire Moz, but now that he's comfortable and doesn't have Alain to bring the best out in him. (From what I remember from Autobiography, didn't Morrissey say there was some tension between Alain and Boz when it came to songwriting?)

With World Peace, i defer to B.B. King, "The thrill is gone."
 

Tralala

New Member
I'm not at all surprised by the negative reception, given that -- and this is a shame -- these reviews are not to take the outstanding bonus tracks into account. "One Of Our Own", "Julie In The Weeds", and "Art-Hounds" should all have been album tracks; all three could take the place of anything apart from "Staircase." Seriously, how in the world did "Art-Hounds" not make the cut? That is pure #1 single material -- the best thing he's done in ten years.

On an unrelated note, what is this obstinate, undying contempt for Maladjusted? How do so many people continue to get it wrong?
 
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A

Anonymous

Guest
Long time lurker finally chiming in.



1) A promising opener (You're Gonna Need Someone on Your Side, Teachers are Afraid of the Pupils, Now My Heart is Full, You Know I Couldn't Last)...




You Know I Couldn't Last was neither an opener nor promising.

Alain Whyte was good. But people would be bitching about him if he were still around. Absence and fond hearts.
 
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