My Morning Jacket

My Morning Jacket => The Music => Topic started by: johnnYYac on Jun 09, 2013, 11:01 AM

Title: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: johnnYYac on Jun 09, 2013, 11:01 AM
Today, June 10, 2014, is the 6-year anniversary of the release of Evil Urges. 

Edit: Today is June 10, 2016, the 8-year anniversary of Evil Urges.

I had become aware of the existence of My Morning Jacket just 36 days earlier (on SNL).  It was enough time for me to accumulate much of their back catalog (a la Stan from American Dad) and realize EU's place in the MMJ discography.  It was a departure from the kind of guitar-driven songs we loved from It Still Moves and Z.  It buffed the polish applied during Z to a sometimes unnatural shine.  But, still, some gems game forth and my live experiences with MMJ only exist post-EU, so no since lamenting missed opportunities.

Many will hem and haw, argue and whine, as to which MMJ album deserves top billing.  At Dawn?  It Still Moves? Z?  And second place might go to one of those or Tennessee Fire.  Few would put EU or Circuital near the top, so perhaps a better angle of view is from the bottom.

I haven't heard a "bad" MMJ studio album, but I'd have to say EU settles near the bottom, fighting for last place with Circuital.  Both have great moments, but lack the greatness or historical relevance of the other four LPs.

But let us not forget...

Smokin' From Shootin', which I can no longer listen to on the LP without expecting the Run Thru add-on!

Evil Urges, with that great drum-roll intro.  Its a great opener and now that its rare, I look forward to it.

I'm Amazed might be too mainstream for its own good, but makes for a great bluegrass song (http://www.amazon.com/Im-Amazed/dp/B008B1UYXI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1370788935&sr=8-1&keywords=keller+williams+with+the+travelin%27+mccourys+i%27m+amazed)! < yeah, click the link!

Remnants and Aluminum Park remind us that MMJ still makes loud, guitar-driven rock.

Highly Suspicious is aptly named.  It took some time before we could accept Jim's venture into Prince's territory, the EU equivalent of Black Metal for weird and out of place.

Librarian, the first MMJ tune my wife liked, which makes it a very valuable track.  I like it, too.

When Jim and Carl played Look at You at an Obama campaign free concert half an hour from my house, it was as if the song was written for that moment.

And, last but not least, Touch Me I'm Going To Scream Part 2, the catalyst for my Omnichord obsession, a song that captures so many aspects of MMJ's sound in one track.  "Its a trip, man"

I know I left out Thank You Too, Two Halves, Touch Me 1, and Sec Walkin'.  I don't like them that much. 

Thoughts?
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: EverythingChanges on Jun 09, 2013, 01:56 PM
Underrated album by the forum IMO.

To me, if the album left out some of the redundant middle filler tracks, and in their place, put more melancholic foreboding tunes to build on SFS and TM Pt. 2's atmosphere, it would probably be my favorite album from them.  However, Look At You and Thank You Too are some of my favorite MMJ songs.

Some of my all-time favorite MMJ lyrics are:

Who makes my decisions?
Who reads all your thoughts?
What makes us how we are?
Faith can't prove what science won't resolve

Kumbaya my Lord
C'mon, row your boat ashore
The river's long, it is cold
It chills the body but not the soul, oh   

Damn!

My passion in music stemmed from Pink Floyd, and thus, I fell in love with the concept album.  To me, EU is the closest MMJ has ever been to creating an album based around a centralized theme: 'love'.  The title track hits this idea early on from the equality standpoint:

It's all the same, we're tired of waiting, come on then
And dedicate your love to any woman or man
No racial boundary lines, no social subdivisions
If you want it, you can

This theme is further fortified on both Touch Me I Am Going To Scream tracks, where the band delves into the more intimate form of love.  These lyrics are full of oddity, but they convey this sense of deep compassion:

I need a human right by my side, untied, untied
I need a human right by my side, untied, untied
I need a human right by my side, untied, untied

I can't help but feel chills every time I hear that part loud in the car.

Another key track, although the forum seems to hate it, is Librarian.  It further expands on the intimate idea of love.  It even takes it a step further, by portraying a love-struck man who stalks a beautiful librarian. 

'Cause everything'd be great and everything'd be good
If everybody gave like everybody could

The above lyrics explain that the world would be a better place if we could all just learn to love one another.

Also, I love how Smokin flows into Touch Pt. 2.  It carries that wonderfully melancholic sound over to the next track without stopping.

The album ender (?), Good Intentions, raises speculation.  Perhaps it serves to remind the listener to love, hence its "good intentions".
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: touchingmept2 on Jun 09, 2013, 03:44 PM
I see EU as MMJ delving into a different style. Sort of coming away from the hippie-esque vibes and venturing into more of a modern style. It was released on my bday, so that's special to me. I saw the band for the first time when they toured on EU, so that's how I was introduced to their live machine.

I think it would have been great to have had the chance to catch them a few years earlier, but that doesn't necessarily take away from the great experience I've had getting to know this band. Evil Urges was and still is an awesome record, especially for that space in time when it was made.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Waddy Peytona on Jun 09, 2013, 04:40 PM
I would dearly love to hear the infamous Evil Urges demos.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: danimal on Jun 09, 2013, 09:50 PM
My passion in music stemmed from Pink Floyd, and thus, I fell in love with the concept album.  To me, EU is the closest MMJ has ever been to creating an album based around a centralized theme: 'love'.  The title track hits this idea early on from the equality standpoint:


If everybody gave like everybody could

The above lyrics explain that the world would be a better place if we could all just learn to love one another.

Also, I love how Smokin flows into Touch Pt. 2.  It carries that wonderfully melancholic sound over to the next track without stopping.

The album ender (?), Good Intentions, raises speculation.  Perhaps it serves to remind the listener to love, hence its "good intentions".

All of this! 

I agree that it plays as a concept album of sorts.  Once I started really hearing the lyrics, I too thought there seemed to be a thread running through.  I dig it.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: manonthemoon on Jun 09, 2013, 10:38 PM
I must say this album has grown on me, but has always seemed to have a few songs I love like SFS, PT2, Pt1, remants and then some of the worst songs of the entire catalouge with sec walkin and two halves.  I'm Amazed I used to hate and still don't love it on the album, but when its played live I love the song, but that's probably due to the riffs at the backend of the song more and a song that I always love to hear live.  Highly suspicious I have always enjoyed, but can see why some people don't like it.  Overall it was a more expansive album, but IMO still near the bottom just above Cicurital as the lowest of the band's efforts.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: buymycar on Jun 10, 2013, 12:50 AM
An anagram for Evil Urges is Live Surge.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: weeniebeenie on Jun 10, 2013, 08:29 AM
I still really love EU. I don't think that there is any song in particular that I don't like or would skip. Each one makes me think of something different and I think it's a really diverse MMJ album. You could pick out any song and happily fit it into another MMJ album but they all really go together well.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Crispy on Jun 10, 2013, 10:12 AM
An anagram for Evil Urges is Live Surge.

 
Another one is Glee Virus
Title: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Fully on Jun 10, 2013, 10:53 AM
An anagram for Evil Urges is Live Surge.

 
Another one is Glee Virus
Vile Surge
Title: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Fully on Jun 10, 2013, 10:55 AM
An anagram for Evil Urges is Live Surge.

 
Another one is Glee Virus
Vile Surge

Rug Sevile
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: buymycar on Jun 10, 2013, 12:28 PM
An anagram for Evil Urges is Live Surge.

 
Another one is Glee Virus
Vile Surge

Rug Sevile

Give Rules
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ManNamedTruth on Jun 10, 2013, 03:22 PM
I know I've mentioned this many several times on the board, but why don't people like Thank You Too? The lyrics are heartfelt, the strings are beautiful and fit right in nicely, the guitar solo is very smooth and probably the best solo on the whole album. I'll even go as far as to say the guitar solo (although a little shorter than some are used to) is the most classically sounding MMJ thing on the whole album. On what was a perplexing album to me at first, I found an immediate comfort level with that song.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ManNamedTruth on Jun 10, 2013, 03:59 PM
My thoughts after 5 years are that I've excepted it for what it is and thankful for the songs that have become live staples. Many of these songs sound better live in general. Evil Urges, Thank You Too, Smokin' From Shootin', and Touch Me part 2 are my favorites. Two Halves is my least favorite. I could probably do without Librarian. I didn't like Highly Suspicious until i saw it live, I still cringe a little on the laugh he does on the album, it's a little awkward and creepy. I didn't care for Look at You until I heard what it was about and then it grew on me a little. I'm Amazed is good, not my favorite but don't dislike as much as most here. Remnants and Aluminum Park - Johnny referred to as the songs that remind us they still rock - to me seem like they just had to throw on some tracks that rocked more and kind of feel half-assed to me. Aluminum Park in particular sounds like a rehashing of What a Wonderful Man. I mainly blame the producer for the album's shortcomings. Maybe a different producer would've talked them into making a shorter/tighter album. It sounds over-produced and too polished to me. One example of a producer trying to do too much is on the title track, the deep backup vocals "i'm ready for it noooowwww" almost ruin an awesome song. The drums and bass sound a little heavy at times, I think Joe Chiccarelli wanted to make something that he thought would sound good on a good sound system. His predecessor John Leckie brought MMJ to their most psychedelic, multi-layered sonic heights with Z, and would've liked to see them work with him more.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ManNamedTruth on Jun 10, 2013, 04:07 PM
Here is another over-produced song brought to you by Joe Chiccarelli, I wonder where they got the idea to use omnichord!?

Minus the Bear - My Time (Official Music Video) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAoVj0-bZkI#ws)
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: justbcuzido on Jun 10, 2013, 07:11 PM
I know I've mentioned this many several times on the board, but why don't people like Thank You Too? The lyrics are heartfelt, the strings are beautiful and fit right in nicely, the guitar solo is very smooth and probably the best solo on the whole album. I'll even go as far as to say the guitar solo (although a little shorter than some are used to) is the most classically sounding MMJ thing on the whole album. On what was a perplexing album to me at first, I found an immediate comfort level with that song.

This and I Will Sing You Songs are my two favorite Jacket songs. You are absolutely right that there is something so heartfelt in the lyrics. I think it's the only straight forward (as in no mystery to the lyrics) love song he has written. Furthermore, it's really the only non-bittersweet love song they have done. Which may make it simple in a sense that its so straight forward, but it's beautiful none the less.

As for the guitar solo, sometimes less is more. It kind of reminds me of the solo in "Something" by The Beatles. Both are short, smooth and not flashy, I think that they convey perfectly the sense of love the song is trying to deliver.

All in all I really love EU and it has grown on me much like Circuital has. Plus it being released on my birthday is a bonus!!
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: buymycar on Jun 10, 2013, 10:01 PM
I listen to the songs Jim wrote for the Monsters of Folk album and I wonder how they would sound if MMJ did them and how they would fit in on Evil Urges.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: EverythingChanges on Jun 10, 2013, 10:03 PM
I know I've mentioned this many several times on the board, but why don't people like Thank You Too? The lyrics are heartfelt, the strings are beautiful and fit right in nicely, the guitar solo is very smooth and probably the best solo on the whole album. I'll even go as far as to say the guitar solo (although a little shorter than some are used to) is the most classically sounding MMJ thing on the whole album. On what was a perplexing album to me at first, I found an immediate comfort level with that song.

This and I Will Sing You Songs are my two favorite Jacket songs. You are absolutely right that there is something so heartfelt in the lyrics. I think it's the only straight forward (as in no mystery to the lyrics) love song he has written. Furthermore, it's really the only non-bittersweet love song they have done. Which may make it simple in a sense that its so straight forward, but it's beautiful none the less.

As for the guitar solo, sometimes less is more. It kind of reminds me of the solo in "Something" by The Beatles. Both are short, smooth and not flashy, I think that they convey perfectly the sense of love the song is trying to deliver.

All in all I really love EU and it has grown on me much like Circuital has. Plus it being released on my birthday is a bonus!!

I agree with Thank You Too.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: el_chode on Jun 11, 2013, 08:50 PM
Dear God, 5 years?


Rightfully at the bottom of the ranking list, wrongfully a bad album. The other releases are just better. Evil Urges is like the Wire. It starts out by blowing you away, then it nose dives into some boring shit you barely pay attention to and can really skip without missing much, then it gets real fucking raw all of a sudden and then blows you away with a solid finish and ends up legendary with an asterisk at the second season.


I remember it quite well; I was in my second semester of my first year of law school working some mediocre job on Market St Philly. My future wife and I were working on a long term relationship while I gave 110% in an attempt to transfer to a better school closer to home. I streamed the SXSW stream daily at work, marveled at the same experiences I had with Yo La Tengo but with a different song (Tom Courtenay for me, Jim tells a lovely story about Center of Gravity at that show), and just waiting - WAITING for the album to drop. Then it did. And as I'm driving home from my final final, I did my usual post-exam worry purge by blasting highly suspicious with the windows down and going directly to WaWa to get a smoked turkey shorti with extra banana peppers.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: MMPJ6306 on Jun 27, 2013, 11:01 AM
Since the album's release I've felt that Remnants and Aluminum Park are the worst songs on the album. Some of the tracks are undeniably good, and tracks 5-9 are understandably divisive but I like them because they're catchy and played around with soft rock and other "cheesy" sounds MMJ hadn't gone into before (you could also make the argument that this anticipated a huge trend in indie rock and pop going on right now).

Whereas Remnants and Aluminum are just kind of bland rockers on the album to balance all the softer and weirder songs, and we know the band can do much better things in that genre.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: smhoffmann02 on Jul 08, 2013, 07:42 PM
I don't really get the EU hate at all.  Yes, it's a departure from the previous releases, but it's part of their journey as human beings and artists.  And, I'm grateful for it.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: e_wind on Jul 09, 2013, 02:37 PM
Since the album's release I've felt that Remnants and Aluminum Park are the worst songs on the album. Some of the tracks are undeniably good, and tracks 5-9 are understandably divisive but I like them because they're catchy and played around with soft rock and other "cheesy" sounds MMJ hadn't gone into before (you could also make the argument that this anticipated a huge trend in indie rock and pop going on right now).

Whereas Remnants and Aluminum are just kind of bland rockers on the album to balance all the softer and weirder songs, and we know the band can do much better things in that genre.


remnants is an awesome song. EU is pretty mediocre for me. like chode said, the wire. great - shit - great. its a hell of alot better than that last album they dropped.
Title: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Fully on Jul 09, 2013, 04:36 PM
Remnants is the shit, and I wish they would play it more. I like EU more than many. If you look at it in the context of all their albums, it is weaker than most of them. However, if you let it stand by itself, and I think one should, then it is a solid album. One doesn't judge a Picasso based on his previous paintings. Stop saying it sucks because it departs from the narrative the other albums put forth. Having said that, Two Halves blows ass for me-not that blowing ass is always a bad thing.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: MamaKel on Jul 09, 2013, 10:37 PM
Evil Urges reminds me of Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs.  At the Naked Lunch obscenity trial, Allen Ginsberg defended Naked Lunch by saying that Burroughs could have been the James Joyce of his generation, if he wasn't a junky...that Naked Lunch had flashes of brilliance, but was incoherent because of Burroughs' deeper issues.  Now, I am in NO WAY saying that anyone in the band is/was a junkie, but I think that Jim was in a process of self-discovery, and was self-admittedly in a state of confusion/darkness.  And I think Evil Urges is a testament to the kind of spiritual experimentation that arises out of a state of confusion...that can ultimately lead to higher states of consciousness.  I look at Evil Urges as the embodiment of 5 multi-faceted musicians, attempting to collectivize the multitude of creative inspiration within each individual microcosm...sometimes doing so brilliantly, sometimes falling short, just like every human being attempting to do the same.  I love that album. Even the songs I don't really dig. Because it was what it was, when it was that.  It made me a true fan of the band, because I heard within its heart a desire to be free of definition...to be honest, albeit flawed.  I admire shit I don't understand, because it challenges me.  It forces me to consider what it is that I am reacting to.  And I think even Jim as a writer would say that he doesn't like everything he's ever written, but I think it takes balls to put yourself out there.  I think it takes balls to let everyone watch you try...just like playing the goddamn saxophone.  I am the biggest chickenshit when it comes to that stuff...so anyone who is living their art in an unapologetic way is a hero to me.  Anyone who can release themselves from the notion of perfection is a hero to me.  The notion of perfection is boring.  Evil Urges is weird. It is imperfect. But it is goddamn beautiful.

"It in a world of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act". 
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Northern Neighbour on Jul 11, 2013, 02:26 PM
EU is a "meh" album.  There are some highlights (Smokin, Scream II), but it is also the album with the two of the worst songs the bands has produced - Librarian (boring and creepy in a stalker way) and Two Halves (absolutely dreadful).  Overall, it's not as memorable as the previous four releases due to the inconsistencies between the songs and the album is a cohesive one.  It lacks any sort of identity and seems more like a hodgepodge of songs.  The title track is a perfect example of the "meh"-ness of the album.

Fortunately, the band was able to outdo EU with Circuital, which IMO is the band's worst album.

FWIW, I'm a fan of Remnants and Aluminum Park.  They may not be pushing the boundaries with these two songs, but I like that they are straight out rock songs.
Title: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Fully on Jul 11, 2013, 09:39 PM
EU is a "meh" album.  There are some highlights (Smokin, Scream II), but it is also the album with the two of the worst songs the bands has produced - Librarian (boring and creepy in a stalker way) and Two Halves (absolutely dreadful).  Overall, it's not as memorable as the previous four releases due to the inconsistencies between the songs and the album is a cohesive one.  It lacks any sort of identity and seems more like a hodgepodge of songs.  The title track is a perfect example of the "meh"-ness of the album.

Fortunately, the band was able to outdo EU with Circuital, which IMO is the band's worst album.

FWIW, I'm a fan of Remnants and Aluminum Park.  They may not be pushing the boundaries with these two songs, but I like that they are straight out rock songs.

That last paragraph just redeemed you for wearing that eyeball shirt.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: GO4IT on Jul 11, 2013, 10:27 PM
I agree with NN that it is not a cohesive album but it does have a lot of very good songs, nonetheless, that when worked into a live MMJ sound great.

So, if I'm at a 3-day run at Port Chester this Dec (please, dear God), I'll be loving a lot of the EU songs and not giving a rip what album they are on.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: HardNightConformist on Jul 23, 2013, 04:06 AM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: lpkell2145 on Aug 21, 2013, 11:43 PM
I'm not saying I dislike this album, I just don't love it. Truth is I can't even listen to it straight through and I have tried, several times. However, I absolutely love the psychedelic journey that Touch Me Part 2 takes me on and Remnant rocks out in the best way!  Most of the other songs on this album for me are just...meh.

Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: dmooney99 on Aug 25, 2013, 09:05 PM
some good songs, some great songs, some ok songs.  Not my favorite MMJ album but not my least favorite either.   :undecided:
Title: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: e_wind on Aug 29, 2013, 04:42 PM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.

Without getting into it too much... I think on a fan board you have to keep in perspective that were comparing MMJ albums to MMJ albums. So circuital isn't bad, but it's "bad" compared to ISM and what not.

Wilco, on the other hand, has no bad albums even in the realm of only wilco albums.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Ruckus on Aug 29, 2013, 11:57 PM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.

Without getting into it too much... I think on a fan board you have to keep in perspective that were comparing MMJ albums to MMJ albums. So circuital isn't bad, but it's "bad" compared to ISM and what not.

Wilco, on the other hand, has no bad albums even in the realm of only wilco albums.
Meh.  Except for a few tunes, I don't much care for SBS and S/T
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: FiddleCastro on Aug 30, 2013, 02:26 PM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.

Without getting into it too much... I think on a fan board you have to keep in perspective that were comparing MMJ albums to MMJ albums. So circuital isn't bad, but it's "bad" compared to ISM and what not.

Wilco, on the other hand, has no bad albums even in the realm of only wilco albums.
Meh.  Except for a few tunes, I don't much care for SBS and S/T

I like SBS but The Whole Love didn't really grab me at all.  Agreed on Wilco (The Album) though.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: scosby2 on Sep 03, 2013, 09:44 PM
To me, EU, has been the album I looked forward to the most...I got into the band after ISM came out and saw a couple local shows around home during both the ISM and Z era...I just wasn't the same person I was when EU came out. I loved music but I hadn't been to Bonnaroo yet and I hadn't really lived by myself where my own decisions mattered so much so the scosby all you guys know was more of a selfish prick who cared a lot about what other people thought rather than just going and having a good time no matter what people think. After Roo 06 I knew this was a band that was going to change my life so I really got into them and a lot more active in the forum community. I was on the street team for Birmingham that helped promote the album. The Monday night before Bonnaroo(where they played the Friday after EU came out) we had an album release party at The Bottletree in B-ham, the band sent us a bunch of stuff to hand out so we listened to the album then watched Okonokos...it was an awesome time.  All that being said, while EU will always hold a special place in my heart it is definitely a weaker album in terms of tunes that will stand the tests of time...I rank it just above Circuital at the bottom of the pile...still not a bad place to be in the whole grand scheme of things if you ask me
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: pattilovesmmj on Sep 05, 2013, 04:39 PM
Each time I listen to the whole Evil album, I love it more.   And for some reason, sec walkin makes me think of my Grandpa Barney - God rest his soul.  So I guess that's one of the reason I love it.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Mr. White on Sep 05, 2013, 08:16 PM
I just listened to it all the way through on my way home from work today (44 miles to home), and I do love this album as well. It's not MMJ's best, but it is the first one I bought since I was late getting into this most awesome of awesome bands.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: MrB on Oct 23, 2013, 12:06 PM
Like Johnny Y, I became a fan of MMJ around the time of this release. EU was my first in depth listening experience of MMJ, although I listened to Z prior, I never really was taken with the band before. I put EU in the context of other non MMJ releases that year, and while new bands like fleet foxes and Bon Iver were emerging, among others, EU stood out for it's accessibility and quirkiness. While Im Amazed gets a lot of flack, it is one of those songs that you can't help but reminisce back to some of the popular classic rock songs of the 70s. The power cords, lead fills, and melody of that song seemed familiar but left me wanting to hear more from the band and led to being taken for a ride through EU. It was an eclectic mix of weirdness, power rock, and acoustic flourishes that really left an impact on me. It made me want to dig into this band and ponder why I havent been listening to them before and mourn over all the great gigs I missed. (I live about 90 mins from Lville and could have seen them a few times in all their primitive wonder). So, my take is , if it wasn't for Im Amazed and this album, I probably wouldnt be a big fan of MMJ now, who are one of the few bands I would  repeatedly pay money to see and hear.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ajclements004 on Oct 23, 2013, 12:33 PM
I believe Evil Urges is one of their best albums.  Being a huge fan of It Still Moves, it was very hard at first to accept the new style the band went for on this LP.  After seeing the band several times since its release, it has become apparent that this album truely captures the live sound they try to emulate on stage.  Jim's vocals are impeccable along with Carl's guitar work.  Another thing that strikes me about this release is that the band was in a good spot at this period of time and the album is more of a celebration for them.   

Highlights for me:

I'm Amazed
Thank You Too
Look At You
Librarian
Smokin' From Shootin'

All in all, My Morning Jacket is a band that likes to try new things with every release, but there are points in every album that have that twang that makes them the fucking awesome band they are. 
Title: Re: Six years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: johnnYYac on Jun 10, 2014, 07:04 PM
BUMP!

Today is the 6 year anniversary of the release of Evil Urges.

With the long hiatus we are currently facing, has anyone revisited their 2008 release?  Have your thoughts evolved?  Best album?  Worst album? 

Have at it...
Title: Re: Six years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: LB on Jun 10, 2014, 07:22 PM
Listened to it a lot cause I just became a MMJ fan. Then I got sick of it. Listening to it again along with their improved live performances of the album, I would have to say that I didn't give it as much credit as it deserved.

Right now, I don't know why, but I think EU>Circuital
Title: Re: Six years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: bears choice on Oct 13, 2014, 07:23 PM
I like EU more and more as time goes on. Much of it is great live. But, I gotta say, it is the very worst album cover ever.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: e_wind on Oct 16, 2014, 06:00 PM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.

Without getting into it too much... I think on a fan board you have to keep in perspective that were comparing MMJ albums to MMJ albums. So circuital isn't bad, but it's "bad" compared to ISM and what not.

Wilco, on the other hand, has no bad albums even in the realm of only wilco albums.
Meh.  Except for a few tunes, I don't much care for SBS and S/T

I like SBS but The Whole Love didn't really grab me at all.  Agreed on Wilco (The Album) though.

I know this isn't the proper thread, but I think the first half AT LEAST of W(TA) is amazing. TWL is probably my least favorite wilco album, but there are quite a few top notch tunes on that album.





Anyways, I love EU. Its the only album that  I think I prefer the studio to the live recordings.
Title: Re: Five years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: EverythingChanges on Oct 16, 2014, 06:47 PM
There's no such thing as a bad My Morning Jacket album.

I'm surprised Circuital isn't liked by some.

One Wing and One Sunday Morning are two of my favorite Wilco tunes. 

Without getting into it too much... I think on a fan board you have to keep in perspective that were comparing MMJ albums to MMJ albums. So circuital isn't bad, but it's "bad" compared to ISM and what not.

Wilco, on the other hand, has no bad albums even in the realm of only wilco albums.
Meh.  Except for a few tunes, I don't much care for SBS and S/T

I like SBS but The Whole Love didn't really grab me at all.  Agreed on Wilco (The Album) though.

I know this isn't the proper thread, but I think the first half AT LEAST of W(TA) is amazing. TWL is probably my least favorite wilco album, but there are quite a few top notch tunes on that album.





Anyways, I love EU. Its the only album that  I think I prefer the studio to the live recordings.
Title: Re: Six years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ffghtrs on Oct 17, 2014, 09:23 AM
Has it really been six years...jesus i remember giving that to a friend the day it came out at Borders where i worked.  fucking a.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: johnnYYac on Jun 10, 2016, 02:27 PM
8-year anniversary bump...
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Murph on Jun 10, 2016, 03:52 PM
8-year anniversary bump...

...and it still gets a bad wrap.  I love this record.  Cant believe it's been 8 years though!
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Nikkogino on Jun 10, 2016, 09:50 PM
An album of good to great songs....not a great album though.  Whereas Z was a cohesive effort, EU was a little too bold.  It needed to be trimmed....all that fat is what b-sides are for.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: gcanini on Jun 10, 2016, 10:05 PM
Evil Urges...it just messes with you. It's always been love/hate with me. Overall, I would take EU over Circuital. While there are filler tracks on EU, those fillers are nice to listen to. They aren't ugly-sounding songs. "Sec Walkin" and "Thank You Too" bring back summer memories for me.

And when EU goes out there, it's freakin great. "Evil Urges" "Touch Me Pt1/2" "SFS". Those songs are killer. It's a very jarring and contrasting album.

And how can you just crack up and jam to "Highly Suspicious"?
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: KingCobra on Jun 10, 2016, 11:17 PM
Every album brings good tunes, some are exceptional live. My Morning Jacket is a live band for me. I wish they played out more.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Lonndown27 on Jun 17, 2016, 09:42 PM
Evil...fucking...Urges.....well well well


JohnnyYac, I'd have to agree with most of your favorites off Evil Urges, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE, Thank You Too! Always have! This was the second album that was released, for me as a Jacket fan, the first being Z. Z hit me in the face and was quite rightly their Zeppelin IV, which makes EVIL URGES THEIR HOUSES OF THE HOLY.

There's so much eclecticism, much like HOTH, D'Yer Ma'ker = Highly Suspicious, No Quarter = Touch Me II, The Song Remains The Same = Evil Urges, Dancing Days = Remnants / Aluminum Park, The Rain Song = Smokin From Shootin......

there's so much color...the color ORANGE comes to my mind any time I think of EU, especially when, the first time I witnessed the Jacket live, the first thing they open with is Evil Urges.......absolute CHILLS....it reminded me of the first time I heard the live version, from March 2008 in Texas, on youtube, watching it over and over and over until the album was finally released.

This band is a marvel. 

I agree with others allegations that EVIL URGES IS A CONCEPT ALBUM....

it's true...it's like an urban surreality....I feel a lot of hope and aspirations and ambition for Obama to become president and change the Bush era around...there's a lot of personal politics going down, a lot of subtle things...the lyrics to LOOK AT YOU are pretty much verbatim from a campaign speech for Obama or something...it's such a call to arms....I remember that time...I had just graduated high school and was really hoping this country was going to change...and then the bailouts happened and all that ugly shit....

this album spoke to me throughout those times, as did the rest of their discography, but more importantly it gave me a kinda weird hope.

FAVORITES:
Smoking From Shootin
Touch Me II
Highly Suspishhhhh
Thank You Too!
Evil Urges
Aluminum Park (one of their most underrated tracks ever)

MEH:
Remnants (never really grabbed me, just seemed like a song they wrote because "shit this album is WAY TOO FUCKIN WEIRD...we need another balls to the wall rock song, but make it the most balls to the wall WE'VE EVER DONE so it silences complainers about the guitar rock being minimized"

Look At You (I go through phases...I either LOVE THIS SONG..or don't care for it, or think it's too schmaltz. I once made the connection between this song and Look At Me by John Lennon...it's almost like a hopeful, uplifting answer song to Lennon's more dreary, more vulnerable self-examination.

I'm Amazed (the most mainstream, poppy thing MMJ have ever done...i love the riffs at the end and the piano and guitar interlockings and of course, the solos...but...I don't really get going like nuts when this song comes on, although i did go bonkers BOTH TIMES it was played live to me)

Sec Walkin (this song should almost never be played live....the only part of it that works is the "Brother...Brother" harmonies...that's it...I give Jim total props for trying this experiment and having the balls to play it at a career defining show like Bonnaroo 2008)


ABSOLUTELY HATE:

Touch Me Pt 1 (its such an unconscionable song...I just hate it..none of it works...if they ever played this thing live at a show I witness, over something else that I haven't heard or frankly one that I even have heard, I'll be annoyed...i just hate it)

Librarian (this is mystifying to me how anyone could've gotten into this band off the "strength" of this song...it's such a weak song from Jim...it doesn't have any good lyrics, the chords are all very reverent and too self serious for a song like this...the strings???? my god...it's a horrorshow of bad decision making on Jim's part. Just my opinion. I'd follow Jim James and those boys to the gates of hell, but NOT if they're playing Librarian)

Two Halves (this is like Jim wanting to reproduce the prom night shows in a song or something...it's so strange...if they would've gone with some more humorous things with this song, it may  have worked and worked brilliantly, like Highly Suspicious...but no...its yet another song, like Librarian, that takes a subject that's not only bizarre, but utterly ridiculous and hilarious and turns it into this reverent ballad...bad move...but oh well, Its STILL a MMJ song..and that's better than 95% of the shit out there)


MMJ captured 2008 in this album....listen to the Waterfront show...there's such a buzz, such an atmosphere...that atmosphere, for me, DEFINES EVIL URGES...  :beer:

Love ya guys!!!  :cheesy:
Title: Evil Urges
Post by: Brother Beck on Jun 18, 2016, 12:01 PM
Some really amazing songs and some absolute crap songs that I can't even wrap my head around what the hell they were thinking.  First album by these guys with songs that I actually actively dislike.  Up until this album I enjoyed all of their songs to one degree or another, it was just a matter of how much.  For me, this is how it shakes out:

ALL TIME CLASSIC
Smokin From Shootin

GREAT SONGS
Evil Urges
Touch Me Pt. 1
I'm Amazed
Thank You Too!
Aluminum Park
Remnants
Touch Me Pt 2.

OKAY SONGS (BUT HONESTLY NOT UP TO PAR)
Librarian
Look At You

SONGS THAT ARE ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE IN MY OPINION EVEN THOUGH I HAVE SO MUCH RESPECT FOR THESE GUYS AS MUSICIANS AND AS PEOPLE THAT I FEEL HORRIBLE FOR SAYING IT
Highly Suspicious
Sec Walkin
Two Halves

I can see the appeal of Highly Suspicious and parts of it are really fun, but for me I just can't get past the weird canned background vocals.  I wish the guys in the band just sang the words themselves.  I tried for years to jam to this song because so many fans seem to really love it but I've just never been able to do it.  The weird voices make it seem to me like they didn't even take this song seriously.  Like a song can be fun but the people making it should still be trying at what they do. 

For a guy who has arguably one of the most amazing singing voices in the world, on Sec Walkin to me Jim sounds like Kermit The Frog being partially strangled and being recorded halfway down a hallway.  When added to the fact that it's just not that interesting of a song musically I just don't know what they were going for. 

Two Halves is just a horrible song. 

I've always wished that Jim took the songs that he brought to the Monsters of Folk album and instead recorded them with the band.  A song like Losin Yo Head would have been incredible done by MMJ and I feel like it really would have for pretty good on Evil Urges. 

Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: amskinz on Jun 18, 2016, 12:45 PM
Brother Beck brings up the Kermit voice. Every time I hear someone say that I wish they could have got the green (it ain't easy) light to be the "backing" band for Dr. Teeth. The possibilities would have been endless. What I hoped for more than anything was a full scale tour where MMJ would play behind the curtain, and we would watch The Muppet band perform.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: LB on Jun 18, 2016, 02:01 PM
Touch me part 1 is perfect.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Lonndown27 on Jun 18, 2016, 07:29 PM
Some really amazing songs and some absolute crap songs that I can't even wrap my head around what the hell they were thinking.  First album by these guys with songs that I actually actively dislike.  Up until this album I enjoyed all of their songs to one degree or another, it was just a matter of how much.  For me, this is how it shakes out:

ALL TIME CLASSIC
Smokin From Shootin

GREAT SONGS
Evil Urges
Touch Me Pt. 1
I'm Amazed
Thank You Too!
Aluminum Park
Remnants
Touch Me Pt 2.

OKAY SONGS (BUT HONESTLY NOT UP TO PAR)
Librarian
Look At You

SONGS THAT ARE ABSOLUTELY TERRIBLE IN MY OPINION EVEN THOUGH I HAVE SO MUCH RESPECT FOR THESE GUYS AS MUSICIANS AND AS PEOPLE THAT I FEEL HORRIBLE FOR SAYING IT
Highly Suspicious
Sec Walkin
Two Halves

I can see the appeal of Highly Suspicious and parts of it are really fun, but for me I just can't get past the weird canned background vocals.  I wish the guys in the band just sang the words themselves.  I tried for years to jam to this song because so many fans seem to really love it but I've just never been able to do it.  The weird voices make it seem to me like they didn't even take this song seriously.  Like a song can be fun but the people making it should still be trying at what they do. 

For a guy who has arguably one of the most amazing singing voices in the world, on Sec Walkin to me Jim sounds like Kermit The Frog being partially strangled and being recorded halfway down a hallway.  When added to the fact that it's just not that interesting of a song musically I just don't know what they were going for. 

Two Halves is just a horrible song. 

I've always wished that Jim took the songs that he brought to the Monsters of Folk album and instead recorded them with the band.  A song like Losin Yo Head would have been incredible done by MMJ and I feel like it really would have for pretty good on Evil Urges. 



I don't agree with everything you wrote, BUT "LOSIN YO HEAD" IS KILLER LIVE BY MMJ...listen to the 2010 recordings...fucking epic
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Shug on Jun 22, 2016, 04:16 PM
I love I'm Amazed, but I like catchy pop songs with a good riff.  Not sure why, but it reminds of The Band.  The lyrics are a lot deeper than the music and I think they are a strongly worded message of the need for love and a relationship with God reflected in how one treats other people and the need for social justice and a rejection of superficial empty consumerism and entertainment intended to distract a society from things that really matter.

We fuckin' need to take to heart the message of I'm Amazed even more today than we did in 2008, I believe.  Fuckin' A.  I get what you are saying about what Evil Urges meant to you, Lonn, in the context of the politics and social movement of the times it was released in.


I'm amazed at a quiet ocean
I'm amazed at your warm devotion
I'm amazed at what the people sayin'
I'm amazed by a divided nation

Like the rhythm of the earth, I get disrupted

I'm amazed at all that has been
I'm amazed at all that will be
I'm amazed at the tv stations
I'm amazed what they want me to believe

After all is said and done- where is the justice?

I'm amazed, the lack of evolution
I'm amazed at the lack of faith
I'm amazed at the love we're rejecting
I'm amazed what we accept in its place

Like the rhythm of the earth
And the rhythm of the ages
Like the rhythm, I get disrupted

I'm amazed
I'm amazed
Ah
Ah

Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Shug on Jun 22, 2016, 04:18 PM
Yeah, I like the idea of this being a Jacket song


Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: SplatSplatSplat on Jun 25, 2016, 12:51 PM
not a good album but it absolutely has some good/great songs
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Shug on Jun 26, 2016, 11:39 AM
I realized what it is about I'm Amazed that reminds me of the band; the twangy repeating  rolling riff in I'm Amazed sounds like the twangy mouth harp in Up On Cripple Creek.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: excel on Jul 26, 2016, 03:04 PM
Thank you for Remnants and the ending to Smokin from Shootin :)
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: odelljaj on Jul 26, 2016, 03:46 PM
I just watched this for the first time last night. It is hilarious and a good behind the scenes of the album.  I am sure it is on this forum somewhere and most have seen it.

My Morning Jacket 2038
https://youtu.be/JGdTwLjNYWk?list=LL4QSPkHkQ8uAJpq6S3Of6ng
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Angela D Vice on Jul 26, 2016, 04:49 PM
I find there are times I love certain albums more than others.  MMJ and Wilco are two of my loves but some albums were immediate favorites while others came to me in time.  I think it depends on your perspective and where your head is when you first hear it.

Shug, I've always loved I'm Amazed but decided earlier this year I was tired of it...  And then I heard it live in the Ville and I was sucked right back into loving it.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Murph on Jun 12, 2018, 12:42 PM
10 Year anniversary bump...

https://www.stereogum.com/2000855/evil-urges-turns-10/franchises/the-anniversary/

Although I'm in the camp that loves EU (the author clearly does not) more than Circuital and The Waterfall, I thought this was a pretty good write up. 
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: rkwedge on Jun 12, 2018, 02:11 PM
10 Year anniversary bump...

https://www.stereogum.com/2000855/evil-urges-turns-10/franchises/the-anniversary/

Although I'm in the camp that loves EU (the author clearly does not) more than Circuital and The Waterfall, I thought this was a pretty good write up. 
I read that too and I agree it's a pretty good write up. I have always liked EU but hearing it from start to finish at OBH4 really took it tp a new level for me. I think it was just because those nights were the history of this band we all love so much and it just seemed like it finally fit. Someone earlier in this thread said "Librarian" has no good lyrics, I beg to differ, "Another Lovely Victim of the Mirrors Evil Way" is pretty powerful IMO.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ChiefOKONO on Jun 12, 2018, 02:18 PM
Thanks for posting that... interesting read and a pretty fair assessment overall.  It is cool to look back at it now with that perspective.  I really liked the album at the time but now I can see a few of the tunes losing their luster.

I am looking forward to their next one and I really hope we hear some of the stuff they worked on during the Waterfall sessions too that didn't come out.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: diddy57 on Jun 12, 2018, 04:33 PM
I love about 50 percent (Evil Urges, Touch Me 1 and 2, Smokin from Shootin, I'm Amazed), like another 30 (Thank You, Sec, Librarian, Look at You, Remnants), don't care for 20 (Highly Suspicious, Aluminum Park, Two Halves). And I know I should feel guilty not liking Highly Suspicious considering how many people seem to love it.

I have to like Librarian. My wife's a librarian. She says listening to it makes the job feel a little more sexy.

Oh, and I like the six seconds of Good Intentions.

 That's still a much higher batting average than most albums I listen to by other artists.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: walterfredo on Jun 12, 2018, 05:41 PM
don't care for (Aluminum Park).


😲
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: gardenparty on Jun 12, 2018, 06:59 PM
Love EU but it certainly has a few clunkers. Two Halves, Sec Walking, Look at You

Highly Suspicious is not great on the album but it is one my favorites live
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: The DARK on Jun 13, 2018, 11:39 AM
Man, has it been 10 years already? I guess I’ve been a fan for a long time, the wait for this felt like ages...

This album was a turning point if there ever was one. It was released around the time of rock and roll’s last gasp on the radio, back when Foo Fighters still held some commercial sway and people were excited about Pearl Jam’s back to basics phase. The buzzwords about this album going in were “breakthrough” and “experimental”, and while we did get a hit single and a handful of electronic/funk numbers, the rest of the album is full of low-key genre exercises and genuine kitsch. It alienated quite a few fans and certainly didn’t light the world on fire critically, enough that critics have been trying spin a “return to form” narrative ever since.

Mostly though, this is where we started to get to know the real Jim James. Before this, we knew him mostly as a bearded rocker with the voice of an angel and some offbeat, mysterious lyrics. Evil Urges was Jim’s first foray into straightforward songwriting, and it was jarring to hear him go from writing songs like Bermuda Highway and Wordless Chorus to Librarian and Two Halves. It was as jarring as dropping the reverb from the early albums, and unfortunately this was not the strongest set of songs to introduce this side of him with.

But for as direct as these new songs were, they were still genuinely weird, because Jim James is a genuinely weird, yet utterly sincere individual. Just take one look at Highly Suspicious. For so many artists out there, writing obliquely is an affectation or a crutch to cover up more serious songwriting flaws. Jim’s strange ideas and turns of phrase are an extension of his true self. Read any interview he’s done lately and you’ll realize his lyrics have never been about complicated ideas, but rather simple ones viewed through one hell of a poetic lens. And ever since Evil Urges he’s gotten better at honing that lens to the point that I think that his best work is still yet to come.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Murph on Jun 13, 2018, 12:28 PM
"Even though the songs themselves were uneven, this is the lasting, crucial gift Evil Urges gave MMJ and their fans: There weren’t really any rules after this"

He hit the nail on the head with that idea.  After EU I think I realized that I wasn't ever going to have any inclination as to what a MMJ album would sound like.  At that point you either sit back and take them as they come, which we all gladly do, or you jump ship
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Cameron on Jun 13, 2018, 02:18 PM
EU has a special place in my heart.  My wife gave birth to our oldest in March of 2008, just a couple weeks after SXSW.  The guys did a lot of shows and press that year at SX and we got to see them twice and then Jim solo (with carl and bo sitting in) once in just a few days.  Seeing him do Librarian for the first time in a church is still one of my favorite MMJ moments.  I also met Jim for the the first time that week at a Wax Fang show.  We talked for a few minutes and I got a picture and he was genuinely interested what I thought of the new stuff from the show the night before.  EU was the soundtrack in our house for a long time after it came out.

When they did EU at OBH this year it kind of took both of us back to the fear and excitement of having a new baby and not believing that that baby is now a beautiful 10 year old girl.

Cheers!
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: ChiefOKONO on Jun 13, 2018, 04:42 PM
I have fond memories of seeing them in Louisville during what I think was the opening of the Evil Urges tour? 

Two Halves is one songs I don't really love and Look at You - people were saying it was a bit of a reference to Obama?  not sure if that is true but I also heard it was about his Grandmother?

Overall I liked it a bit more than Circuital and I ended up really loving Waterfall.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: robb on Jun 13, 2018, 05:04 PM
I have fond memories of seeing them in Louisville during what I think was the opening of the Evil Urges tour? 

Two Halves is one songs I don't really love and Look at You - people were saying it was a bit of a reference to Obama?  not sure if that is true but I also heard it was about his Grandmother?

Overall I liked it a bit more than Circuital and I ended up really loving Waterfall.

at OBH jim confirmed look at you was written about obama.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Osistheones on Jun 13, 2018, 05:44 PM
Look at You, Thank You Too and Two Halves are what I would cut. Shift some of the tracklist around and you have a fantastic LP. Still like it more than their last couple.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: jttouch2 on Jun 13, 2018, 08:04 PM
Look at You, Thank You Too and Two Halves are what I would cut. Shift some of the tracklist around and you have a fantastic LP. Still like it more than their last couple.
The fantastic LP is a good point, I'd take EU (my least favorite MMJ album) over nearly every other album from any other artist. The "misses" are better than most bands successes.
Title: Re: Eight years later... thoughts on Evil Urges
Post by: Brother Beck on Jun 13, 2018, 09:53 PM
Evil Urges has some absolutely incredible songs on it.  It has one song - Smokin From Shootin - that could possibly be my favorite MMJ song, and at the very least is absolutely on my short short list.  It definitely has a few tracks that I don't care for, but for any other band, an album that has what could possibly be my favorite song by them and an album that I love 64% of would be really damn great. 

I still cannot sit down and listen to it all the way through, however.  For me, the highs are really damn high but the lows are really damn low.  It is too all over the place to be enjoyed by me all at once.  And a full decade later I still dislike Highly Suspicious as much as I did back then.  The background vocals kill it for me.  Parts of the song are undeniably fun as hell but other parts I cannot get over.  To me, that song would be the very definition of what a b-side should be. 

I have a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that these guys have decided against including songs like Friends Again and Ready To Be Called On and How Could I Know on albums proper, but decided *for* Highly Suspicious.  If I had to do a ranking I suppose Evil Urges would be their 'worst' album, but I say any band should be DAMN proud to have an album like Evil Urges be their worst album.  Very excited for new music from Jim and really looking forward to the day we get new music from all of them together.