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Your Arsenal (Vinyl) [Import]

Morrissey LP Record
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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His fourth and finest solo album is, as the cover shot suggests, Morrisey's idea of hard rock. There's a gritty, glam feel to Mick Ronson's production (check the Ziggy Stardust cop on "I Know It's Gonna Happen Someday"), while the loud'n'rude riffs of new guitarist Boz Boorer banish memories of the Smiths. Best news: for once the songs focus on adult life, not the man's well-documented adolescence. --Jeff Bateman

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Most helpful customer reviews
Format:Audio CD
Your Arsenal is one of Morrissey catchiest and hardest rocking solo albums, while still taking on lyrically all the things that made him famous in the Smiths.
The sound? Well, all the keyboards from "Kill Uncle" are gone, that's for sure. In their place are loud glam-rock guitars, thanks to Alain White and Boz Boorer. Expect to hear lots of distortion, slides, and the very occaisonal burst of babbling noise. Keeping a steady rhythm behind this are Spencer Cobrin on drums and Gary Day, who provides some very infectious melodies on the bass.
On the ballads (and there are a few), there's a bigger emphasis on the mood. Gentle acoustic guitar, acoustic They often feature sound effects to deepen the atmosphere (similar to the way that Pink Floyd used sound effects, particularly on their album "Meddle", but more conventional). As a last production job before he died, producer Mick Ronson put quite an effort into this.
"You're Gonna Need Someone on Your Side" sets the glam rock tone, with plenty of guitar hooks to boot. Features the self-depreciating lyric, "And here I am, and here I am. Well, you don't need to look so pleased". What a great line to have in an opening song! The next track, "Glamorous Glue", is a gritty, straightforward piece of hard rock. Amongst the lyrics, Morrissey takes on liars of all kinds and mourns the loss of the British identity to Americanization.
The next two songs got Morrissey into a bit of trouble at the time of release. "We'll Let You Know" is an atmospheric ballad about soccer hooligans. In this song, after describing their violent and uncompromising nature, Moz calls them "the last truly British people you'll ever know".
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5.0 out of 5 stars Essential April 10 2004
Format:Audio CD
This has to be my favorite Morrissey-solo album. It's just more consistent than anything else; the mood, especially, and the quality (even Vauxhall had a few weak songs). Some albums just seem to be collections of the songs that the artist happened to record at that time, arranged in a way that makes some sense, but Arsenal feels as though it was really concieved of as a complete work of art. From track one to track ten, the swagger and edge is consistent, from happier tracks (You're The One...) to the expected melancholy ones (We'll Let You Know). Seasick, Yet Still Docked might be a bit over the top ("Wish I knew the way / to reach the one I love / there is no way"), but its blunt, tired frankness sets it apart from similar songs in the Morrissey catalogue, and the stereotypical Smiths fan should lap it up. Aside from that, though - this is certainly Morrissey's other side, here, hinted at even in his Smiths days with songs like 'London;' a fiercer, more robust presonality, fascinated with the more gritty aspects of his nation. The humor, of course, remains intact, with songs like 'We Hate It...,' and his political side is displayed in 'Glamorous Glue' (not, as some have bizzarely suggested, in 'National Front...'). The closing track, Tomorrow, seems to me to be the epitome of the album, mixing the traditional sentiments ("Would you tell me that you love me / Oh, I know you don't mean it") with this reinventive loud, unwilting style.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
This album like "Bona Drag" brings the Milkbaby fond memories of when he was a little kid(around 5,6,7,8 years old)listening to Morrissey with my sister,The Milkbaby had a great musical taste then(sorry mes don't mean to sound like a snob or an elitist).When one comes to reviewing things the Smiths are easier to review then Morrissey is,why? Morrissey in the sense is like Death Metal(I don't mean he sounds like Death Metal or anything so don't get the Milkbaby wrong)that death metal does sound like to someone who's close-minded is that it all sounds the same but to music fans it has it's own unique quality to it,Morrissey's music is like this in that it never grows,the early work of the smiths sounds very different from there later stuff.What the Milkbaby is trying to say is while Morrissey's stuff may sound the same on the surface they each have there own unique quality and emotion to them,there is nothing wrong with this at all.What can the Milkbaby say that already hasn't been said about this great musician,I can say this though if you like the smiths we'll love Morrissey,but if yer new to the game you should get "Bona Drag" first instead of this one,then make this yer second purchase.MILK,BABYLAND FOREVER,PINKY WAVE.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Elvis WHO? Bring on Morrissey! June 18 2004
Format:Audio CD
Smiths - Morrissey: let me give you the conclusion that took me 18 years to arrive at. Besides the song Meat is Murder, Morrissey doesn't have a bad song is his catalog. I used to think "Kill Uncle" (by Morrissey) was a lame album and that "Maladjusted" was worse. I traded in both cd's only to buy them back years later. It is a disservice to judge The Smiths and Morrissey album by album, this one is more sorrowful, this one has the right mix of angst, self-indulgence, wit, blah, blah, blah. Stick all the songs on MP3 format and press random: it is sonic Heaven and Hell. Morrissey IS the Mozart of our time, he will die as a blip on the musical scene with most people drawing a blank stare at the mention of "How Soon is Now." Oh wait, didn't he write the theme song for "Charmed."
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  65 reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential April 10 2004
By Henry Platte - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This has to be my favorite Morrissey-solo album. It's just more consistent than anything else; the mood, especially, and the quality (even Vauxhall had a few weak songs). Some albums just seem to be collections of the songs that the artist happened to record at that time, arranged in a way that makes some sense, but Arsenal feels as though it was really concieved of as a complete work of art. From track one to track ten, the swagger and edge is consistent, from happier tracks (You're The One...) to the expected melancholy ones (We'll Let You Know). Seasick, Yet Still Docked might be a bit over the top ("Wish I knew the way / to reach the one I love / there is no way"), but its blunt, tired frankness sets it apart from similar songs in the Morrissey catalogue, and the stereotypical Smiths fan should lap it up. Aside from that, though - this is certainly Morrissey's other side, here, hinted at even in his Smiths days with songs like 'London;' a fiercer, more robust presonality, fascinated with the more gritty aspects of his nation. The humor, of course, remains intact, with songs like 'We Hate It...,' and his political side is displayed in 'Glamorous Glue' (not, as some have bizzarely suggested, in 'National Front...'). The closing track, Tomorrow, seems to me to be the epitome of the album, mixing the traditional sentiments ("Would you tell me that you love me / Oh, I know you don't mean it") with this reinventive loud, unwilting style.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last, he gets it right! Feb. 26 2014
By Steven C. - Published on Amazon.com
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If you're a fan of Morrissey, you know he usually botches his re-issues quite badly. You have deleted tracks, parts of songs edited out, wrong-era photographs for the artwork, illogical tracklistings, and flimsy packaging. When I first heard that "Your Arsenal" was to be remastered and re-issued, I braced for the worst. You see, it's not only my favorite Morrissey album, but it's his finest solo effort in general. All around strong, showcasing the finest artistic quality of any of his work. What if he would have deleted "Seasick.." or "You're the one for me, Fatty"? I was worried.

Like the sheep that I am, I placed my pre-order for the CD and for the vinyl editions in early December. There was no way I was passing up getting even most of these songs remastered!

Days after I place the pre-order, it's revealed on his website that this re-issue would come with a bonus DVD of the live show from Halloween 1991. Particularly special for me as it was my very first ever Morrissey live show! Spectacular memories of a great halloween just a few minutes from my house. I was just 21 and I'd never seen anything like it. Example: Girls loved Dave Gahan on the Violator tour the year prior, but no one ever tried to storm the stage and hug him. The Morrissey experience was one of a kind, and the DVD was a welcomed bonus. However, I must warn you that it's just a coverted video sourced from a VHS recording so the picture quality isn't the best, but the sound is great, his band is very tight, and you're immersed in the experience I got to witness live.

The CD, thankfully, is presented in tact with its original song sequence. There are rumblings from fans that he tinkered too much when he decided to present the slightly longer and more powerful U.S. mix of "Tomorrow" as the album's closer, but the reality is, it's a better version and this doesn't really alter the experience of listening to one of the best albums of the 1990s. The remastering is the very best of any of the Morrissey re-issues. Your Arsenal, like Vauxhall and I, were in desperate need of proper remastering. There was no possibilty to simply 'turn it louder' for songs like "Seasick...". The remastering is really THAT GOOD to the discerning ear. No loudness wars, or clipping, or pitchiness - - just spectacular, re-invigorated sound. The listener is left with a restored impression of such tracks as "We'll Let You Know", "The National Front Disco" and my personal favorite "Seasick, Yet Still Docked". The curious thing is that even with all of the Morrissey re-issues, "The Best", "The Very Best", "Greatest Hits", we've never had any of the three UK singles "We Hate It When...", "...Fatty", or "Certain People I Know" remastered before. We have them now.

The vinyl is presented on thick 180gram virgin vinyl in a gatefold sleeve with different artwork on the back and inner cover on the sleeve. The record itself is in a plastic lined black paper jacket and there are no other inserts.

The CD/DVD set is in a sturdier-than-his-usual, mini LP gatefold style digipak. One note on the artwork: It's the original album front cover art exactly with a slight altering of the Font. There is NO Parlophone logo on the U.S. version as it's released here on SIRE RECORDS and there is no word "stereo" either as some of the pictures show. I can deal with the font change if the tracklisting and appropriate front artwork are presented in tact.

I would have loved a few of the "Your Arsenal"-era bonus tracks remastered. Fan favorite b-side "Jack The Ripper" (studio version) is absent and so we don't get it remastered. I always thought, too, that when we finally saw a Morrissey re-issue of Your Arsenal, we'd finally get a full/not-cut-off version of "There Speaks A True Friend", but we don't. There are a few b-sides from these Your Arsenal sessions that have been remastered, so you can find "Pashernate Love" remastered on the Kill Uncle re-issue and Fantastic Bird from the Southpaw Grammar re-issue, and a not-as-good long version of "Let The Right One Slip In" exists on the Bona Drag re-issue in case you'd like to burn your own deluxe edition. However, even with those extra songs missing, I'm pleased with the overall presentation of the product. With "Your Arsenal" being his best solo record, with the bonus DVD and brilliant, brilliant remastering job, this re-issue is absolutely essential.
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rocks surprisingly hard Aug. 27 2003
By jon sieruga - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Although it fades a bit in the final stretch, "Your Arsenal" rocks pretty hard, with Moz in complete rock star mode. He's moody, coy, pouty, sexual, asexual and ethereal(especially on the haunting "We'll Let You Know")and I found this to be one of his very best efforts. Encompassing all of his strengths and few of his musical weaknesses, the CD is tight, compact and extremely well-produced.
Also check out the live album "Beethoven Was Deaf", which includes much of the material found here in a live, rocking format.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars YOUR ARSENAL : essential masterpiece! April 26 2006
By J. Holmes - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
i had heard Morrissey songs before in the past and i didn't really have much of an opinion on them. they seemed fine for what they were...but i had a hard time grasping just what all the fanatacism was about. until i heard Your Arsenal. then i understood and the curtain was lifted to reveal the allure of the Morrissey mystique. this album holds alot of personal special feeling and memories with it, but as a stand alone album, it is a masterpiece and a modern classic. the music thunders with a swagger and a confidence that draws heavy influence from Bowie, T-Rex, and a host of old rockabilly bands. draped with the charming vocals of Morrissey, the songs shine with a charm and a vigor that is life-affirming. it's really quite impossible to hand pick the best songs on here, because they are all truly great. a shining example of how wonderful a solid a Morrissey album can be...and one that revealed a whole new world of appreciation. consider me converted!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Master's Voice rocks! March 27 2006
By Dario Western - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This was Morrissey's final album for the classically orientated HMV label in the UK, and what a brilliant album it is.

His 1991 album "Kill Uncle" was rather lightweight pop, and the following year he ditched the mediocre and turned to late producer Mick Ronson to beef up the guitars and deliver an album which relied heavily on 70's glam rock and classic rock'n'roll.

You're Gonna Need Someone On Your Side: Nicking the bass line from the "Batman" theme, this is a fine opening for the album. It's about having someone whom you can't stand befriending you. 9/10

Glamourous Glue: Half the fun of this track lies in guessing the riffs that they're nicked from. You can hear influences of the Sweet's "Blockbuster" and a string quartet playing Gary Glitter's "Rock'n'Roll Part 1" in the middle 8 (strangely enough he is not credited on this track). It's about the Americanisation of British culture 'we look to Los Angeles for the language we use. London is dead, London is dead.' 10/10

We'll Let You Know: A gentle ballad about soccer hooligans with some discordant recorder playing, and some delicately scrubbed acoustic guitar. Morrissey sums them up well in the final line "We are last British people you will ever want to know." 9/10

The National Front Disco: Almost a sequel to Asian Rut, this is Morrissey's take on the power struggles between the white and black people in England. 9/10

Certain People I Know: Taking the guitar riff from T-Rex's "Ride A White Swan", this is a pleasant track about Morrissey's much publicised idols. I wish this had been a bigger hit in the UK than it was, but then again everyone else was too busy listening to bad techno. 10/10

We Hate It When Our Friends Become Successful: A lively rock'n'roll track about what we in Australia call the "Tall Poppy" syndrome, this is a slap in the face to people who pull people who have worked for fame and fortune off their pedestals. It's also good to hear Morrissey laughing on one of his songs for once. 10/10

You're The One For Me, Fatty: A song to make the overweight want to drop their Jenny Craig diets and fall in love with the Moz, whose own girth started to grow during this period. The guitar riff is rather daggy, but still pleasing to listen to. 9/10

Seasick, Yet Still Docked: This track is one of Morrissey's saddest ever. It's a waltz-time track with a repetitive guitar solo that will either send you into a trance or to sleep. 8/10

I Know It's Going To Happen Someday: Opening with some ham radio effects, the song was later covered by David Bowie on his "Black Tie, White Noise" album. 8/10

Tomorrow: Not the cover of the Sandie Shaw song, but rather a fine piece of power rock that closes the album and showing Morrissey still feeling sexually frustrated and unfulfilled. 10/10
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