Years Of Refusal


By nature, friendships, and bonds are considered healthy when they work in tandem. For Steven Patrick Morrissey, they do but in a weird masochistic way where hate breeds love, and vice versa. On Years Of Refusal, Moz’s ninth studio album in three years, the former Smiths front man is a fair-weather friend, loyal to the ebb and flow of his hot and cold relationship with fans, and media respectively. His output parallels death when he himself opts to leave for the far off places of, a watery grave (“Mama Lay Softly On The Riverbed”) and the pit of hell (“One Day Goodbye Will Be Farewell”). And upon the oft-delayed release of Years, things went from bad to worse with a wave of retirement rumors, along with the passing of the album’s producer Jerry Finn (Green Day’s Dookie, Blink-182’s Enema of the State). But whether or not the iron curtain falls for Moz, one thing is for sure; we’re not supposed to feel sorry for him. Sentiments he regards as “fake humility…won’t bring 19 years back” to him, as he states on “Sorry Doesn’t Help.” If this sounds like a guilt trip for the incessant prodding about being gay (or not), the tone isn’t as dark as it might be thanks to the shimmering backdrop of his bandmates. Those expecting sappy ballads get the tortured insight of “You Were Good In Your Time” and “It’s Not Your Birthday Anymore” which flow back to back. But after that he’s moved on. And so should you. He’d told us back in 2006 on “In The Future When All’s Well.” So what do the cards hold for the 49-year-old aside from more media speculation? The cover of Years Of Refusal shows Morrissey clutching a baby boy with a butterfly etched on his head. Pan down to Morrissey’s arm and there is a cocoon. In growing older or living younger, we abide by the most imperative of the rules of attraction—the chase. —Richard "Treats" Dryden

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Years Of Refusal