ROTT...Your Final Verdict?

Maurice E

Junior Member
I'd give Ringleader of the Tomatoes 7/10. A pretty good Morrissey album compared with 5.5/10 for Quarry; a third rate Morrissey album.

Ringleader, for me, has three great songs; Hero, Pigsty and Future; another three pretty good ones You Have Killed Me, The Youngest, Boy Happy, three ok-ish ones and three really duff songs which I've hardly played and don't want to hear again (Father, At Last, and On the Streets).

In my humble, the best collection of post-wilderness era Morrissey songs are the Quarry b-sides on the platinum album. Interesting lyrics which don't grate (unlike too many Moz songs these days), imaginative arrangements, strong melodies etc; Friday Mourning, Walk Tall, Never Laid (that's the never played) Symphonies, Daddy's Voice; these are all top-notch, prime-time Morrissey pop songs!
 

alma matters

New Member
I think it is exellent. I latched on to it the second I put it in after purchasing it. It grabbed me more than Quarry did and still does. It is not his best, as it does include a few tracks that to me are just subpar. There are one or two I will sometimes skip over, which is an adjustement compared to some of the greats like, Arsenal, that I would never touch the skip button. I ruined it for myself, however, by listening to it though a tough time, and it constantly reminded me of that time. Seeing it live though put it in a new perspective for me though and I adore it all the more. Far off places is not done any justice on the album...my goodness...live it is so beautiful and amazing!
 

duchess_of_fork

New Member
I don't know how much I appreciate the album lyrically...I still remeber reading Dear God Please Help Me before I've heard the song and I thought that the lyrics were a bit silly (but then I got the album and I listened to it and I really started liking it..the music gives it a different mood)...it just may be that he's way too personal on this album. it's very much his own, and because he speaks about love, and I am not nor have ever been in love, I find the songs very difficult to relate to. However, in the future when all's well is a classic!
Well...I suppose a lot of his other songs are about love too...but different types of love. Temporary, maybe even infatuations...but this one talks about life-ending, life changing, love...and I just can't relate to that as much.
 

Still Tired

as it were...
I don't know how much I appreciate the album lyrically...I still remeber reading Dear God Please Help Me before I've heard the song and I thought that the lyrics were a bit silly (but then I got the album and I listened to it and I really started liking it..the music gives it a different mood)...it just may be that he's way too personal on this album. it's very much his own, and because he speaks about love, and I am not nor have ever been in love, I find the songs very difficult to relate to. However, in the future when all's well is a classic!
Well...I suppose a lot of his other songs are about love too...but different types of love. Temporary, maybe even infatuations...but this one talks about life-ending, life changing, love...and I just can't relate to that as much.

I agree completely with feeling a little distanced from the songs content wise, I can understand where he's coming from but have no personal experiences I can relate to in order to enjoy the songs on a deeper level. For example, on At Last I Am Born, I can listen to it, think it witty, but it doesn't go any further- unlike the vast majority of the rest of his songs. And with Boy Happy, I still have an issue with that, I just can't get into it at all and I really don't know why. I can't help wonder if it's an age thing, he sounds like he's reflecting on his life and undergoing a re-birth, whereas I'm just starting out on my life!

I don't play ROTT half as much as I thought I would, but I think that may be due to the fact I far more prefer the gentler songs, ones that are more atmospheric and his voice is the main thing to come through (which is why I have such affection for Kill Uncle). Whereas most of the songs on the album are loud, both literally and in the musical composition! At one concert he introduced the first song to be sung off the album as being one of his 'music hall tracks', which I thought was a pretty good description in a way- of these loud bombastic works. If the whole thing was in the vein of Dear God/ Pigsty, that'd be perfect for me. And I have loved some of the b-sides far more than the album tracks (Sweetie-pie/ If You Don't Like Me) and it seeemed such a shame they were left off.

I have had moments of thinking the album is actually pure genius, then I just don't play it for ages... hearing the tracks played live endeared me to some of them a lot more it has to be said. I suppose to sum it up, I really love some of the songs, and really don't like others, and those extremes haven't happened with any of his other albums for me.
 

Mozzaa

Sing Me To Sleep....
Again Like He Should Have Done With YATQ Choose Some Of The B-Sides To The 'Album Fillers'(Not That I Would CAll Any Of Them That) Like Don't Make Fun And The Public Image Should Have Been Included Insted Of Some Other Material(Not Going To Nit Pick) Or Maybe Swapped. Like With This Album Some Of The B-Sides Would Have Been Better On The Album. And Will People Stop Berrating Kill Unlce I Rate It VERY Highly And Have Never Said It's A Lesser Album When It Isn't At All Mute Witness Is One Of My Fave Songs Ever And There's Just As Good Songs On This Than Most Of His Albums...
 

Lilac 1

Member
Personally I love it. Possibly my favourite solo album but this tends to change fairly regulary. Love all the b-sides too (as always)

Hearing all the songs performed live has really added to my enjoyment of it also.

Lets hope 2007 brings us another great Moz record
 

Stanley

Junior Member
ROTT for me promised much but delivered little. The build up was good - Visconti at the helm, Moz inspired by Italy (a country I love) and a collaboration with Morricone.

I wasn't sure when I first listened to it and actually turned it off before the end as it was just too disapointing for words. Having said that it has grown on me over time. My opinion now is that it is a weak album that is saved by having 3 amazing songs on it - Pigsty, Dear God and You Have Killed me. 3 of my favourite tracks since the moz comeback. The rest of the songs I feel indifferent about.

In a nutshell - if you are new to morrissey, don't buy this album, just download these 3 tracks from itunes!
 
prefer it more then quarry, but like that lp i do skip tracks which something i didn't do with the others... except malajusted, i just play the singles from that lp.
but ROTT is better then nothing. the live shows i have sen this year made me like it more too!
 
thumbs up sincerely...it was just not what I was expecting...I liked it better than YATQ, which is very good, but I don't know maybe I was expecting an album filled with it's hard to walk to tall when youre small type songs...

love him still, for and ever
 

Slip-In

Junior Member
ROTT is the first Morrissey album I wasn't inclined to learn all the lyrics at once to for whatever reason, I don't think its because it is a bad album at all.

But it is what I love so much about Morrissey, none of his previous albums reflect much on the current one, YATQ served its purpose and now so has ROTT in his career.

I do agree there is a sense that most songs on ROTT do not connect much with each other, especially in the album order but variety is the key word I think.

Let's not forget, he's said many times before, "It's best to give an audience what it doesn't want" and this time that statement rings so true.

I hardly think Tony Visconti's production would have made things any different had he not produced the album but his input is written all over it and I think Moz is very happy about that and that's enough for me really.

My only sour grape about ROTT is that they didn't record enough B-Sides but I digress.

I am just truly happy to have Moz back, let's face it, had he not liked, agreed to sign with Sanctuary, we wouldn't be having this discussion.

Having said that, I think there are some very VALID points on this thread, :cool:
 

lztom

Member
With the obvious provisos that any Morrissey album is streets ahead of anything else out there and, of course, IMHO....

It's very average overall. Boring even in places. You can see my comments in the 'Tobias Thoughts' thread but to echo them here, he brought very little to the table in terms of song writing ability. It's stretching an analogy but in parts, it almost sounds like a slowed down version of a bad AC/DC record the way that song after song pounds away with those monotonous rock riffs that Tobias chugs away at in strict 4:4 time. Lyrically, as ever, the album is very very good but I think the Tobias contribution hampered the record's chances of being truly good or great overall.

That said, there's some good and really good songs on there with DGPHM, TYWTMY and INBAHN (an obvious better choice as single than ITFWAIW and IJWTSTBH) being the most prominent. Not really mad about IWSYIFOP- I love Zeppelin but I just don't think Morrissey doing Zeppelin-esque tracks is the way he should be looking to go at ALL. I may be going against the grain here but I have never liked Life Is A Pigsty. When I saw the tracklist initially, I loved the title but this song leaves me completely flat. To me, the music is just bog standard muso's pseudo prog-rock. Again, I'm all for Morrissey trying new styles out but prog rock is another bad direction for me. Don't like the song live at all either.

All of the above probably sounds wholly negative and ungrateful. I still listen to the record sometimes and it's light years ahead of 99% of other records released in the last twelve months. It's just that Morrissey has such a stunningly high quality back catalogue, so when he releases an album which is, ultimately, as average as I feel this will be considered in the long term, it is not going to compare well. We all know how much better he can do.
 

thewarroom

Scorpion Kicker
I may be way off base with this, but here goes...

I didn't really care for this album on its release...and I still don't. As has been previously stated by others, it certainly does have its moments (YHKM, TYWTML, Pigsty) but it has far too much filler material. Much of this album could not hold a candle to even average YATQ b-sides. It's bland. I listen to my 7 inch "YHKM" single more than the rest of the album, mostly for "Good Looking Man About Town".

But as we know, Moz does not stay in one particular "sub-genre" for too long. This was a return to glitter/prog rock, all of which was done better between "Arsenal" and "Maladjusted" (an album that I still quite like :D).

I wonder how much of it has to do with a desire to remain outside of the mainstream. In the USA, he was untouchable from 1991-94. He even had a hit single (!) in "Closer." But then he released an album in "Southpaw" that was unlistenable to a lot of American listeners who just didn't get it. He faded from view in 1995, and returned with the release of Quarry. He had a few songs receive airplay in the states, and even made an appearance on American television (even if it WAS Craig Kilborn's show lol). And now he has released the polar opposite of Quarry, an album that has not gotten much airplay in the states, despite several bands of late hailing Morrissey as an icon or hero.

<SIGH> How I long for the days of seeing "Morrissey/Street" beside any track. Or even "Morrissey/Nevin" for that matter ;) . A poor choice of producer and chief songwriting partner in Jesse T. Still, I applaud his efforts to ensure that no two albums are exactly alike, stylistically or otherwise.
 

Stanley

Junior Member
Having given this more thought I think some of the negatives are down to the fact that the album is quite slow paced and there aren't many fast dynamic songs like there was on quarry. This was apparent with the live shows earlier on the year.

Good call about Good Looking Man about town - a song I've only really just got into. Not sure about the beginning but it's a cracker....
 

Jeff196

Junior Member
I think the songs are good. BUT the production is not complimentary to many of the songs (except In the Future/ Youngest/ YHKM/ Dear). The secondary songs, are muddy sounding to me. But they could have been great - they are simply not glam rock songs:

Hero, Boy Hapy, Father, Art - these could have been gorgeous, but to me they are jammed with too much stuff...
 

lux girl

In Moz We Trust
ROTT has cooled a bit for me. Loved it at first, then listened more and realised there are only about 3 outstanding tracks for me. Pigsty, Dear God and believe it or not, You Have Killed Me.

YATQ is by far my fave, possibly because of the preceeding wilderness years where there was no musical output at all.
 

SRA

the queen is still ill
Moderator
I think ROTT lacks the oustanding singles that YATQ had, nothing on it quite reaches the chart busting levels (quality wise) of First Of The Gang or Irish Blood, English Heart (one of his best solo songs ever IMO) but overall I think ROTT is a better album.

I like the atmosphere and texture of the tracks on ROTT whilst on the previous album it sounded a bit synthetic. I know this isnt about comparing YATQ and ROTT however so to judge ROTT on it's merits alone...

It represented quite a brave step for Moz I think. You may not like it but at least you can never accuse the man of standing still, I like the adventerous feel to the album, musically and lyrically, even if some of it doesnt come off. YATQ for example felt like a bit of a 'safe' album, unadventerous, which is understandable given he had to reestablish himself in the mainstream again.

I really liked ROTT at first, some of the magic may have worn off but overall I still think it offers some terrific songs. Work of Art, Youngest, and Born are probably the only real duds on there in my opinion.

Maybe at times the lyrics arent as poetic as in the past, thats the only criticism id have of the mans words.

An all round good album in my opinion though perhaps missing one more oustanding track along with Pigsty.
 
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