Review ·

There is something perversely satisfying in the fact that the famously recalcitrant and quietly rebellious Morrissey would, at an age when most figureheads of rock and pop begin churning out cross-eyed and midlife-crisis’d dreck, routinely release one excellent and engaging record after another.

Continuing the roll he’s been on since 2004’s warm, stately You Are the Quarry, Years of Refusal finds the singer doing what he does best -- biting lyrics (i.e., wittily bitchy), pop pathos, that instantly recognizable croon -- while making slight adjustments to the conservatism (aesthetic, not political) that has dictated his solo work since the first notes of Viva Hate. In this noisier and looser-than-average (for him) record, Morrissey finds comfort not in his trademarked misery and dread of aging. Rather, he mocks his miserablist image in songs like the jazzy sway of “You Were Good in Your Time” and finds comfort in middle age, a sentiment that forms the bedrock of the crunching “That’s How People Grow Up” and the whiplashed “I’m OK by Myself.” 


Whether this most recent entry in his ongoing hotstreak is due to the confidence that stems from pop culture re-acknowledging his importance in recent years, or is simply a bi-product of maturity (not to be confused with complacency -- he’s still bitchy), is beside the point. With music this uniformly entertaining, it’s best just to quiet down and let the former Stephen Patrick Morrissey do the talking. That's what Years of Refusal confirms as his greatest strength, anyway.


  • Something Is Squeezing My Skull
  • Mama Lay Softly On The Riverbed
  • Black Cloud
  • I’m Throwing My Arms Around Paris
  • All You Need Is Me
  • When I Last Spoke To Carol
  • That’s How People Grow Up
  • One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell
  • It’s Not Your Birthday Anymore
  • You Were Good In Your Time
  • Sorry Doesn’t Help
  • I’m OK By Myself

Morrissey's ninth album, Years of Refusal, not only features the much talked about Jake Walters 'Morrissey holding baby' cover illustration, but also promises to be the strongest Morrissey release ever (that is, according to the Moz himself). It seems that a handful of UK-based fans agree--much of the album was performed this December at Piccadilly's Pigalle Club in London, and received words of praise by the music press in attendance. That lovable British MTV dandy Russell Brand described it as "grand."

Many of the tracks, including "That's How People Grow Up", "All You Need Is Me", "Something Is Squeezing My Skull", "Mama Lay Softly on the Riverbed", "I'm Throwing My Arms Around Paris" and "One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell" may not be new to Moz fans, as they were first heard on his 2007/2008 Greatest Hits tour.

Late of the Pier - Fantasy Black Channel Immaculate Machine High on Jackson Hill

Looking forward to this.

/site_media/uploads/images/users/gaelen/photo-43jpg.jpg gaelen

wasn't a huge fan of the last album, but I always look forward to a new Moz release...

/site_media/uploads/images/users/alexawinnik/RichardHell.jpg alexawinnik

"It's Not Your Birthday Anymore" is one of the best tracks he's done in recent years. It could have fit really nicely on "Quarry" as well...

/site_media/uploads/images/users/leefull/109lamp.jpg leefull

right on leeful -it's his best song in quite a while. I like the muscle of the album- compared to the relatively soft (after the first 4 tracks) "Tormentors"

/site_media/uploads/images/users/dukkookim/6460_1130716601218_1626340558_309884_1280450_njpg.jpg dukkookim

Years of refusal is the best album I have heard in many, many years. Also, sorry to nitpick, but it's Steven, not Stephen. Though neither of these are appropriate when the man himself goes by his surname and nothing more.

miss shankly

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