Well, I read the various other reviews of this album and felt I had to add to the list. I've followed SY since Bad Moon Rising, they have provided the soundtrack for much of my adult life... and I couldn't disagree more with the general sense of dislike expressed regarding this album. Maybe I have grown up along with the band, maybe it's my continued Downtown NYC leanings, but this is the one I have always been waiting for. Tension between rock song form and noise? I find that sort of obvious at this point. There are many different forms that might be employed to make "songs." Here we find the ol' SY gang letting loose like they haven't since Confusion is Sex. Not as noisy perhaps, but just as dense, just as unexpected and, in the end, creating a soundscape that I find both astounding and magnificent. "NYC Ghosts and Flowers"? How could this not become an emblematic album post 9-11? (Yeah, I know it came out before... so?) A sonic landscape of streets. layered histories, strivings and failings, an elegy, a tribute, a document.
"NYC" is and has been on constant rotation in my musical realm since its release. L's list says "boring"? Sorry, man. You need to learn some more patience. I never fully embraced the 90's grunge rock SY stuff. Just not what i come to them for. I want density... chiming, stunning discord, small aural openings that expand around me and envelope me- (and the eschewing of verse/chorus structure and spoken additions make perfect sense to me.)
SY has always dodged in and out of rock-dom and with the addition of the SYR recordings and their various more "experimental "projects they have clearly signalled that their allegiance lies more firmly on the avant side. Best album since "Daydream Nation"? Nah.... best album.