If you look at the main poll on the "How do you rank YOR thread", most people actually think it's an above average, very good album.
Those who aren't happy with it, and are obviously entitled to there opinion, are simply more vocal.
I think it's very good personally.
Oh good, an anticipation thread.
I haven't heard the album either, and I've been avoiding most of the reviews, but I'm sensing a raw, aggressive sound with forceful drumming, distorted guitars, and a seething/intense/operatic "performance" from The Vocalist expressing dismay, anger and just a touch of dark whimsy.
Just the right soundtrack for this moment in time.
I think it's his best album -- most cohesive, most focused, most artful -- since Vauxhall and I. The songwriting is excellent; it definitely benefits from a minimum of Jesse Tobias compositions. His lyrics have a good mix of typical Morrisseyan tales of woe about presumably himself ("One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell," "I'm OK By Myself," "All You Need Is Me"), and pretty little succint and empathetic portraits of other characters ("You Were Good In Your Time," "When Last I Spoke to Carol," "Mama Lay Softly on the Riverbed"). This latter category is what makes the album especially great, I think. And the band really, really rocks out -- impressively so. But it can be subtler too, like on "Good in Your Time" or the epic "It's Not Your Birthday Anymore" which shows Moz and his band can really shift gears on a dime these days. Unlike Ringleader, Quarry, Maladjusted, and even Southpaw, Years of Refusal doesn't have a song that I skip every time I listen to it, except maybe for "That's How People Grow Up" and that's because I've heard it a million times. All in all, the negative reviews here have really dismayed me. And I don't mean posters who have some substantive criticisms of the album because I don't think it or its creator are perfect; but those (and they know who they are) who exist on this website to sneer at everything Morrissey does, and when he creates an album like Years which is daring and almost adventurous, of course they won't like it. But I think if a listener gives it a chance, they will be more than satisfied.
and just a touch of dark whimsy.
Excellent summation (says someone who has heard it - and has it pre-ordered ).
I really think it is his best album, although some others don't agree with me. To each their own.
I guess its just hitting me at the right time, in the right place.
... but those (and they know who they are) who exist on this website to sneer at everything Morrissey does, and when he creates an album like Years which is daring and almost adventurous, of course they won't like it. But I think if a listener gives it a chance, they will be more than satisfied.
Defensive aren't you? On the contrary, I do not think you sneer at everything Morrissey does. Obviously not, for anyone who has read your posts. In fact, I think you are somebody who had fair criticisms of Years of Refusal and almost named you in my post as such, but if you'd like to blow up instead, that's fine. Onto my claim about the album being daring (and notice I said "almost adventurous"). I think for one thing, yes, the Latin stylings on "Carol" are daring and when juxtaposed with Morrissey's voice and typical style, experimental by his standards. And the strange swirl of sounds and dialogue on "In Your Time," while a harkening back to old Moz songs like "Spring-heeled Jim" and "Black-eyed Susan," is still rather atypical and, I think, interesting. The vocal leaps on "Something is Squeezing My Skull" and "It's Not Your Birthday Anymore" took some guts and I think came out fabulously. The instrumentation is more interesting -- the drums especially come out in a way unseen on any solo record I can think of, the Jeff Beck guitar parts on "Black Cloud," the shift in "Birthday," the delicate almost harp-like guitar line in "I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris," these are all subtleties that make up the best backdrop for Morrissey's voice in years. You don't like these flourishes; that's different from the album actually lacking flourishes. So get your argument straight please. If you think Ringleader was daring, you must be joking. That album was for the most part, vintage Moz-by-numbers (see the Allmusic review of the record).
Allmusic is far from garbage. I think they've for the most part given Moz's records very fair reviews; I would have given Ringleader a little higher than three stars but I agreed with his points. "At Last I Am Born" does have interesting instrumentation, but it's a shitty, shitty song. "Far-off Places" and "Pigsty" are undeniably brilliant and I love them. And nice little jab there, but I don't see how that negates the fact that Beck's part on "Black Cloud" is an interesting and compelling little piece of music.