Years of Acceptance: Morrissey IX
The album explodes at the start with Something Is Squeezing My Skull. There's a kind of punk frenzy joined with Moz's expressions of chemical unhappiness. Desperation and urban hysteria is laid out in searing statements of dissapointment. Compositionally its one of the stronger tracks on the album. He sings "life is nothing much to lose" on Mama Lay Softly On The River and "we'll be safe and sheltered in our grave." The gray world described is neither pretty nor safe. The single I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris feels like Morrissey at his best. Its taut, evocative, and swooning. The rejection received turns at every point into rejection projected and delivered.
The album picks up again with When Last I Spoke To Carol a song about domestic romance hanging by a slender thread. The track dances along to a spanish rhythm before escalating with brass. You Were Good In Your Time is one of the better narrative driven experiments. A slow burning candle for washed up artists all over.
As a whole the album is good but not great but consistency has never been a strong point for Morrissey, even going back to the earliest Smiths albums. Morrissey fans will enjoy the mixture of pining and backstabbing on his ninth studio album and there are several surprising moments fueled perhaps by recording allegedly in few takes with the band playing altogether in the studio.