Years of Refusal To Make Good Music… Until Now: Morrissey’s New Single

 The problem with most of Morrissey’s solo work is that most of it is too similar to the Smiths- and Johnny Marr did it better than whoever Morrissey is working this. The major exception to this is Morrissey’s superb 1992 album “Your Arsenal”, which manages to meld the most assertively British singer of the 80s to good old rockabilly. Lyrically, Morrissey also escaped from the Smiths on this album, throwing away most of the angst and heartbreak for anti-Americanism (Glamourous Glue) and glammy declarations of… something (You’re Gonna Need Someone On Your Side). And when the heartbreak did surface (Tomorrow), the music could lift it out of a Smiths photocopy. Then Morrissey spent the rest of the 90s with mediocre albums, returned with a fairly good record in 2004 (You Are The Quarry), and made the most blandly stereotypical Morrissey record in 2006 with Ringleader of the Tormentors, which, aside from lead single “You Have Killed Me”, was largely bad, though not quite as bad as his upcoming record, Years of Refusal, appeared to be. The incomprehensible title seems to refer to abstinence or being straight-edge or vegetarianism or whatever. So it comes as a surprise that here in 2009, more than 20 years after the breakup of the Smiths, the lead single of Years as Refusal, “I’m Throwing My Arms Around Paris”, is not just a solid track, not just a good track, but a great track. Honestly, folks. Yes, it seems like Morrissey by the numbers, and to some extent it is. But it’s so well done that it could be a Smiths song; the songwriting is impeccable, the production is devoid of any bombast, and (gasp) Morrissey’s histrionics are not just bearable, as they are in the best of his solo work, but they are downright enjoyable. It’s a shame Morrissey just released another greatest hits- this belongs right up front.

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One Response to “Years of Refusal To Make Good Music… Until Now: Morrissey’s New Single”

  1. i was getting so sick of all the music comming out these days. and then last week sally kellermanns album droped. omg. it is so wonderful. her voice relaxes while being sensual and sultry. her album goes perfect with a bottle of wine some candles and of course your lover. check out her music at sallykellermann.com

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