Z

  • Record Label: ATO
  • Release Date: Oct 4, 2005
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 236 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 236

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  1. Jul 10, 2013
    9
    All around great album. Awesome tunes with a mellow/laid back feel. It's just great. The real jewels of this album are "Dondante", "Wordless Chorus", and "Lay Low". Highly recommended.
  2. Jul 28, 2012
    7
    I barely discovered this band today, and I instantly fell in love...until I heard this album. First three tracks? Great.

    Everything else was garbage until I heard "Lay Low," then the rest went back to being garbage.
  3. j30
    Dec 7, 2011
    9
    Z is an impressive, near great album from My Morning Jacket. Don't make a judgement the first time you listen to it. It's very different from anything you've ever heard before from the band. (Early) Pink Floyd, Radiohead, and Wilco all come to mind when I listen to the record.
  4. Dec 22, 2010
    10
    This is one of my favorite albums. It's simply amazing. Jim Jame's vocals are simply astounding. His voice is beautiful. This is in my top ten greatest rock albums I've ever heard. "Wordless Chorus" is just an amazing starter. You can really hear Jim's voice the best in that song. And "Lay Low", my favorite song on the album and one of my favorite rock songs I've ever heard, has THEThis is one of my favorite albums. It's simply amazing. Jim Jame's vocals are simply astounding. His voice is beautiful. This is in my top ten greatest rock albums I've ever heard. "Wordless Chorus" is just an amazing starter. You can really hear Jim's voice the best in that song. And "Lay Low", my favorite song on the album and one of my favorite rock songs I've ever heard, has THE greatest guitar solo I've ever heard. It's just awesome. All In All, This is one of my favorite albums to date and it never gets old. A Expand
  5. skybar
    Sep 27, 2008
    10
    Perfect album for night drives. Note to half of the commenters: Stop comparing everything to Radiohead. Learn how to appreciate something without namedropping. Learn to do that and you'll be better than half of the so-called music critics out there. Can't you sit and listen to something and appreciate it for what it is? You fools would listen to Berlioz and say, "Oh my. This Perfect album for night drives. Note to half of the commenters: Stop comparing everything to Radiohead. Learn how to appreciate something without namedropping. Learn to do that and you'll be better than half of the so-called music critics out there. Can't you sit and listen to something and appreciate it for what it is? You fools would listen to Berlioz and say, "Oh my. This sounds an awful lot like Beethoven. What a poseur!" Expand
  6. Jake
    Jun 23, 2008
    10
    This is simply an incredible album. Every song sounds different but they all come together in a strangely cohesive way. Lay Low, Wordless Chorus, It Beats 4 U and Dondante are genius and you owe it to yourself as a fan of quality music to pick this stellar album up. I'm sure glad I did.
  7. JomoandTheSmoothies
    May 8, 2008
    10
    This album is a classic.
  8. RobV.
    May 6, 2008
    10
    Best album of 2005. 4th best of all time. Perfect mix between Pink Floyd, Led Zep and Neil Young, but in a modern jacket.
  9. Thecrystalcat
    Jan 31, 2008
    10
    would be pretty sweet if they could make the background music of my life.
  10. DamijanG.
    Jan 24, 2008
    10
    One of the best in decade!
  11. ScottS.
    Jan 2, 2008
    10
    Easily the best album of the year, if not the decade.
  12. AlexP.
    Dec 30, 2007
    9
    A great album. Soaring proggy yet rootsy rock, with Jim James' Neil Young-esque falsetto and twirling jamming guitars creating a unique sound. Very good, and their best album to date.
  13. ArturoR.
    Oct 16, 2007
    10
    This is their best work!
  14. JohnS.
    Aug 22, 2007
    10
    Awesome. Literally inspires awe in your ears, your heart and most importantly your soul. Each song reaches an orgasmic guitar solo crescendo.
  15. MatthewG
    Jul 16, 2007
    10
    Simply one of the best albums made in the last 10 years.
  16. BenS
    Mar 14, 2007
    10
    I'm not one to over-rate; the more I listen to this album, the more it grows on me. It's incredible that they managed to master so many different types of music on one album, from prog (Dondante) to an almost reggae sound (Off the Record). I hope that this is just the beginning.
  17. TomR
    Feb 3, 2007
    9
    I would like to vote 10 on this release from my recent favorite rock band MMJ, just to offset the 0-2 votes here. Z is obviously not a 0-2, and those who rate it that simply can't appreciate the talent that Jim James and MMJ display. Either that or they grew up in the 70's and are stuck there and anything after that has been a "copy cat". It is true that MMJ borrows alot from I would like to vote 10 on this release from my recent favorite rock band MMJ, just to offset the 0-2 votes here. Z is obviously not a 0-2, and those who rate it that simply can't appreciate the talent that Jim James and MMJ display. Either that or they grew up in the 70's and are stuck there and anything after that has been a "copy cat". It is true that MMJ borrows alot from 70's rock. In fact many groups borrow from 70's and 80's music nowadays, but few can take the music they love, add their own flair and pull it off. MMJ is one of the few. This CD is an instant classic and will be one of the revered recordings of this decade. The reverb is still persent, but not as glaring in previous efforts, and the newly revamped band rocks out, especially on Anytime and What a Wonderful Man. There are a couple of weaker tracks on the CD, but are overshadowed by the highlights like Gideon and Anytime. MMJ uses keyboards more often and effectively than peviously and the result is a more well rounded sound on two of my personal favorite tracks It Beats 4 U and Wordless Chorus. The CD closes with the epic Dondante. As a sidenote, I caught MMJ at the Avalon in Boston, and they were just as good as on Okonokos. I recommend seing them soon before they headline Amphiteaters. MMJ truly is a great American rock Band. Expand
  18. Cat
    Dec 28, 2006
    8
    Great album. Definite grower...may sound a bit strange at first but once you listen to it more you appreciate its nuances and little oddities. Not to mention that these guys are AMAZING live. That made me appreciate this album all that much more.
  19. Lou
    Dec 18, 2006
    9
    9.5 really. Fantastic album. Nothing left to say!
  20. Rufus
    Dec 7, 2006
    8
    I like this release so much that I intend to spend millions of dollars buying up all available copies of it so that no one else can have one.
  21. GingerMoon
    Nov 30, 2006
    9
    Z is definitely one of the best albums of 2005, and that says a lot because 2005 was a great year for alternativ music. Each track is so diverse and unique, beautifully composed, with fantastic lyrics. Lay Low is by far my favorite track, an epic tune that desrves praise!
  22. RichardC
    Oct 12, 2006
    10
    I just found out about this band, and I have to say that this album is AMAZING! An instant classic.
  23. HannaW
    Sep 27, 2006
    9
    This is the album that they were meant to create. The album's leading up to this were training wheels for what is to come from this band after Z. They capture the very essence of Z in their live shows. I would recommend everyone that is a MMJ fan to please see them live. They get it and you will too.
  24. willd
    Aug 7, 2006
    10
    Great album.
  25. callumm
    Aug 3, 2006
    9
    A slice of genius. Just as good as Illinois, metacritics 2005 number 1. But in a different way. There are some fantastic songs on this album with. No filler. However some are more fantastic than others. Into the woods lets you down a little but then you hear the other half of the album and when you think the album could dip it lives up to the first half. I feel guilty giving this 9 and A slice of genius. Just as good as Illinois, metacritics 2005 number 1. But in a different way. There are some fantastic songs on this album with. No filler. However some are more fantastic than others. Into the woods lets you down a little but then you hear the other half of the album and when you think the album could dip it lives up to the first half. I feel guilty giving this 9 and not a 10. Brilliant Expand
  26. IdoY
    Jun 24, 2006
    9
    amazing
  27. BaldurH
    Jun 23, 2006
    9
    an astonishing album! Wonderful man Dondante are among my favourites.
  28. lisal
    Jun 13, 2006
    10
    This is by far one of the best albums ever! Every song is so unique and wonderful to listen to! It proves that music is an art.
  29. mr.hankey
    Jun 3, 2006
    7
    It's a good album but in the end you feel that some of the songs are either trying to make you like them or are just too similiar. Don't get me wrong MMJ as a band is brilliant but this album doesn't feel as good as some of their older stuff. But still it is an intelligent mix of pop, alt- country, southern rock and ambience that make this album one of the best of 2005.
  30. RobertM
    Jun 2, 2006
    9
    I've never been a big fan of the band. There are too many similar sounding bands out there that I think do it better. But with this new album, MMJ's sounds does change dramatically. I've read some unwarranted claims of them souding like Radiohead or that they will be the new American Radiohead. That just is not so. They aren't in the same league. The vocals and the I've never been a big fan of the band. There are too many similar sounding bands out there that I think do it better. But with this new album, MMJ's sounds does change dramatically. I've read some unwarranted claims of them souding like Radiohead or that they will be the new American Radiohead. That just is not so. They aren't in the same league. The vocals and the music are much more akin to The Flaming Lips. In fact, parts of this album would be a better follow-up to Yoshimi than the latest offering from Flaming Lips. Still, musically, I enjoyed this CD very much. Expand
  31. StephenS
    May 12, 2006
    10
    One of 2005's very best discs. Allow it to grow on you with entire listenings.
  32. SeamusS
    Apr 7, 2006
    8
    I wont be the first to throw it out there. It's no new masterpeice. It only shows potential to be one. Sonically, it's bold, brillaint and incredibly listenable. Vocally, however, There is a different side. There is a clear lack of diction that causes repeate listens to be trying. Listen to it as a peice, not song for song. It'll be more satisfying that way. It's good, I wont be the first to throw it out there. It's no new masterpeice. It only shows potential to be one. Sonically, it's bold, brillaint and incredibly listenable. Vocally, however, There is a different side. There is a clear lack of diction that causes repeate listens to be trying. Listen to it as a peice, not song for song. It'll be more satisfying that way. It's good, great even. No masterpeice, not yet Expand
  33. PaulV
    Mar 5, 2006
    7
    Continuation of "It still moves"...more so than less so. Tracks are tighter, solo singing is better, song writing demonstrates more talent. However, with that said, this doesn't bring the listener any closer to "listener glory" than their other recording mentioned previously. Good but certainly not great.
  34. caryl
    Feb 24, 2006
    9
    A very solid 9!!I have always loved MMJ's original sound. But this new record is so different than its predecesors. I hear so many different sounds in each song. Off the Record reminds me of an old Replacements song but it is so obviously MMJ. That is so cool. And the keyboards and vocals in Gidion are moving. Any way, I am very proud to be from Louisville.
  35. porkenVonPumpaloaf
    Feb 16, 2006
    7
    Its good, but in the top three of 2005? i dunno.
  36. KyleL
    Feb 14, 2006
    8
    Very good album...gives you the same great style, but with a faster beat. My Morning Jacket rose from the 'unknowns' with "Still Moves", but "Z" flowed much better. Good album...
  37. NickT
    Jan 20, 2006
    9
    One word to describe this album: concise. MMJ took the overly long songs from their previous albums and cut them down to little bits of perfection.
  38. steveh
    Jan 18, 2006
    9
    A high nine= 9.8
  39. mikef
    Jan 10, 2006
    9
    Fantastic Cd, just skip "into the woods" and you got a solid listen from cover to cover. Dont miss a chance to see these guys live, Amazing!
  40. daveg
    Jan 7, 2006
    8
    This album has some fantastic tracks, and the band works wonderfully together. However, some tracks such as "It Beats 4 U" and "Into the Woods" are a little bit ugly for such a pretty-sounding record.
  41. FletcherB
    Jan 5, 2006
    8
    Just listen to "What a Wonderful Man"
  42. SteveT
    Jan 4, 2006
    9
    Reminds me of Little Feat and The Allman Brothers.
  43. JoelA
    Jan 1, 2006
    10
    I feel like I've been waiting my whole life for this album!
  44. Craig
    Dec 28, 2005
    10
    Excellent album. One of the top 5 for 2005.
  45. JyotirmayaD
    Dec 27, 2005
    8
    I wish they would play this kind of shit on MTV instead of freakin' Ashlee Simpson or whateer her name is... j.t.
  46. EffE
    Dec 23, 2005
    9
    Best album of the year with Broken Social Scene's BSS. I just can't take it out of my cd player.
  47. KevinG
    Dec 21, 2005
    9
    An Allman Brothers for the 21st century. A terrific pop record and how often can you say that?
  48. Souldiver
    Dec 21, 2005
    10
    In short, "Z" is a masterpiece that will certainly stand the test of time to these ears. I have listened to this record quite a lot since the day it came out and continue to discover little pieces of ear candy each time I put it on. For the record, I too believe the Flaming Lips comparison an apt one, but that is not intended to imply "Z" is derivative. Like many great works of art "Z" is In short, "Z" is a masterpiece that will certainly stand the test of time to these ears. I have listened to this record quite a lot since the day it came out and continue to discover little pieces of ear candy each time I put it on. For the record, I too believe the Flaming Lips comparison an apt one, but that is not intended to imply "Z" is derivative. Like many great works of art "Z" is willing to show its influences, and there are many strewn about in this sprawling, beautiful sonic landscape, but it is in the blending of its influences where "Z" and MMJ find their voice. And, it is a heavenly voice indeed and one that rewards repeated listening. Like my favorite records of all-time, I expect "Z" to be revealing little nuggets of sonic pleasure and lyrical revelation to me for some time to come. Expand
  49. Martini
    Dec 20, 2005
    10
    An amazing work from a band who continues to reinvent itself with every ablum they release.
  50. bobsyouruncle
    Dec 20, 2005
    9
    Great CD, I can listen to it over & over. I find the songs progress nicely from begining to end with great tempo, but i especially love the guitar solos in Laylow & Dondante. Jim James voice is piercing and brilliant the whole cd flows beautifully, the reason I'm not giving it a 10 is at 47 minutes it is a bit short, but it is worth it. This, just like any other cd, is one that you Great CD, I can listen to it over & over. I find the songs progress nicely from begining to end with great tempo, but i especially love the guitar solos in Laylow & Dondante. Jim James voice is piercing and brilliant the whole cd flows beautifully, the reason I'm not giving it a 10 is at 47 minutes it is a bit short, but it is worth it. This, just like any other cd, is one that you either love or hate, and I love it. Expand
  51. MathMasterK
    Dec 19, 2005
    8
    Great album! I've enjoyed it thoroughly. At least five of these songs would fit nicely on The Soft Bulletin though... mind you, sounding like The Flaming Lips is quite an accomplishment... so this is not ground-breaking stuff. And I agree that any reference to Radiohead's OK Computer is so far off the mark that one should have his Music Reviewer Licence revoked. Does it sound Great album! I've enjoyed it thoroughly. At least five of these songs would fit nicely on The Soft Bulletin though... mind you, sounding like The Flaming Lips is quite an accomplishment... so this is not ground-breaking stuff. And I agree that any reference to Radiohead's OK Computer is so far off the mark that one should have his Music Reviewer Licence revoked. Does it sound like OK Computer? Not in the least. And anyway, Radiohead had The Bends in their rear-view mirror before recording OK Computer... so making OK Computer was just a techo-glitchy extension of that effort. Is this really the case with My Morning Jacket? Not from what I've heard. Expand
  52. naja
    Dec 16, 2005
    9
    i agree with what jim said below a few comments. this album is like a more excessible, rockier soft bulletin. flaming lips come to mind a lot, but not too much to the point where they sound like a knock off band. z is a good album, one of the best of the year, but no necessarily earth shattering, and though soft bulletin is comparable to ok computer, it's not soft bulletin, just i agree with what jim said below a few comments. this album is like a more excessible, rockier soft bulletin. flaming lips come to mind a lot, but not too much to the point where they sound like a knock off band. z is a good album, one of the best of the year, but no necessarily earth shattering, and though soft bulletin is comparable to ok computer, it's not soft bulletin, just closer to soft bulletin than to ok computer in sound and style. Expand
  53. Tyler
    Dec 15, 2005
    10
    great.
  54. Mack
    Dec 9, 2005
    10
    Absolutely amazing album from start to finish. MMJ draws upon a varied palette of influences yet still remains an undeniably unique force. Yes, I was also suprised to read all the professional reviews and never come across a Flaming Lips comparison - I guess the reviewers thought that was too easy so they'd have to go for something a little less immediate, like a few seconds that Absolutely amazing album from start to finish. MMJ draws upon a varied palette of influences yet still remains an undeniably unique force. Yes, I was also suprised to read all the professional reviews and never come across a Flaming Lips comparison - I guess the reviewers thought that was too easy so they'd have to go for something a little less immediate, like a few seconds that resemble Radiohead. I wouldn't mind if more bands tried to sound a little like the Flaming Lips - they're amazing too. "Knot Comes Loose" is one of the most beautiful songs I've heard in a while, and "Wordless Chorus" is brilliant. Z deserves to be on every year-end list. Expand
  55. jc
    Dec 5, 2005
    9
    DAMMMN good. Best of the year. Oh boy. Slightly ahead of Wolf Parade... That's all I've got to give. Mike F: that has a negative impact? As a Lips fan: weak.
  56. Jim
    Dec 5, 2005
    9
    Great album from a band with lots of potential. The comparisons to OK Computer are way off base, however. I think this sounds like a more accessible version of The Soft Bulletin by The Flaming Lips. Certain songs are also reminiscent of U2 and The Who. Though, mostly, this is a fine and original LP worth picking up. I don't understand any haters out there. This is the kind of album Great album from a band with lots of potential. The comparisons to OK Computer are way off base, however. I think this sounds like a more accessible version of The Soft Bulletin by The Flaming Lips. Certain songs are also reminiscent of U2 and The Who. Though, mostly, this is a fine and original LP worth picking up. I don't understand any haters out there. This is the kind of album that makes me happy to be alive. Expand
  57. ChrisH
    Dec 2, 2005
    8
    Z is definitely a tighter and more sonically pleasing album compared to the last one, It Still Moves. I love Jim James' voice and the reverb works more to the albums favour here than it did before. Drums have some great rythms, addition of keys is a big plus! Gets an 8 because one song (Track 6) is not so great; doesn't hurt the flow of the album though. Go buy it and see them Z is definitely a tighter and more sonically pleasing album compared to the last one, It Still Moves. I love Jim James' voice and the reverb works more to the albums favour here than it did before. Drums have some great rythms, addition of keys is a big plus! Gets an 8 because one song (Track 6) is not so great; doesn't hurt the flow of the album though. Go buy it and see them rock live! Bring back the 70s hair! Expand
  58. MikeF
    Dec 2, 2005
    7
    How come none of these reviews seems to mention the striking similarity of the singer's voice to that of the Flaming Lips' Wayne Coyne???
  59. Primushead
    Dec 1, 2005
    10
    Great album from one of the greatest live bands EVER.
  60. MattyD
    Nov 30, 2005
    9
    Since OK Computer alt-rock has been getting closer to a digital age Sgt. Pepper. Although I think the Radiohead comparison amongst 90% of critics with this band is hideously misplaced, Z maybe getting all the more closer to that bull's eye
  61. aaronb
    Nov 22, 2005
    10
    Best album since Pearl Jam VS.(1993).
  62. Tom
    Nov 21, 2005
    9
    I love it. Overall, I find it very relaxing to listen to, yet some of the parts are soooo rocking. You can cite a million influences for these guys, but they blend them together so wonderfully (although, I don't quite understand where all this Radiohead talk is coming from?)
  63. Borat
    Nov 15, 2005
    10
    Is nice. I like.
  64. IndS
    Nov 14, 2005
    10
    Album of the year.
  65. madsl
    Nov 13, 2005
    8
    The first three tracks are as brilliant as anything on OK Computer or The Soft Bulletin. Had they made a whole album like that I would have hailed it a masterpiece. The rest is often good stuff but as an album it lacks consistency and coherence...and some of the guitar parts are rather dullas well. But boy can jim james sing!!
  66. SheilaM
    Nov 10, 2005
    10
    What more can we ask? It's brilliant...good musicanship along with creative song lines.
  67. CharlieB
    Nov 10, 2005
    10
    Maybe it's just me, but I hear some of The Who in here. Great album!
  68. Smaz
    Nov 9, 2005
    10
    MMJ has made stellar albums in years past, particularly It Still Moves, but never before have they crafted together sonic elegance and downright southern grittiness so beautifully. Falsettos galore make this truely an awe-inspiring listening experience.
  69. NatM
    Nov 7, 2005
    10
    Rarely is there an album this full of majesty and grace. From the beginning of "Wordless Chorus," we know we're in for a ride. "We are the innovators, they are the imitators" indeed--these guys will have plenty of followers. The album snakes through beauties like "It Beats 4 U" and "Gideon", rockers like "What A Wonderful Man" and "Off the Record". Then there's "Dondante"--as Rarely is there an album this full of majesty and grace. From the beginning of "Wordless Chorus," we know we're in for a ride. "We are the innovators, they are the imitators" indeed--these guys will have plenty of followers. The album snakes through beauties like "It Beats 4 U" and "Gideon", rockers like "What A Wonderful Man" and "Off the Record". Then there's "Dondante"--as dark as Pink Floyd, as ethereal and haunting as Neil Young, this is one of the best songs released on album since...well, since MMJ's own "One Big Holiday" in 2003. This is a band at the top of their game, but we should be seeing the game rise even higher. Having seen them live right after this was released, i can attest to the fact that they are as good of a band as there is out there. These guys are the real deal. Expand
  70. JH
    Nov 5, 2005
    9
    Wow ... even if some tracks don't quite work, you can hear the urgency in the lead singer's voice - these guys are for real, or at the very least, they play a good game for 40 minutes. This is my first MMJ album, and I am more than impressed.
  71. MuradA
    Nov 4, 2005
    8
    It's always a joy to stumble across an album and a band that you have no idea about and end up loving it all. It's a slow burner, that initially interests and then grabs you.
  72. Rick
    Nov 4, 2005
    9
    Great, great album! I enjoy it more with every listen!
  73. JeffS.
    Nov 3, 2005
    10
    One of, if not, the best album of the year!!
  74. CanadianPhilosopher
    Nov 1, 2005
    9
    One of the best albums of the year. Indie pop mixed with trippy Pink Floydish guitar meandering. I love this CD.
  75. NickR
    Nov 1, 2005
    10
    AWESOME ALBUM. JIM JAMES IS AMAZING. similiar to a modern day led zeppelin. check out It Still Moves too!
  76. BradE
    Oct 29, 2005
    10
    Truly epic. I see and hear a lot of comparisons to Neil Young, the Band, etc. -- classic Americana. But, the songs soar into melodic, fuzzy guitar heaven, reminiscent of great British acts such as James, Coldplay, Radiohead, and Doves.
  77. Barry
    Oct 27, 2005
    9
    whats with the band bashing.. Steve-o you suck and MMJ rocks my socks off
  78. DanteG.
    Oct 26, 2005
    9
    If it wasn't for the kitten on fire and baby in a blender I would have given this album a 10. I've been listening to it a lot of times and I don't even mind those lines that much anyway. The album is great. A couple of songs more, of that quality would have been wonderful.
  79. RaulJulia
    Oct 24, 2005
    8
    Good but not 9 or 10 good. MMJ moved me stirringly in the past but not so much here.
  80. C.B.
    Oct 24, 2005
    8
    Looking forward to many more amazing releases
  81. EefV
    Oct 23, 2005
    10
    It is among the best cd's of the year. great songs. great music. high class
  82. Plato
    Oct 21, 2005
    7
    "boughten"??
  83. PaulW.
    Oct 21, 2005
    9
    "Z" is one of the greatest records 2005. Every song on the record is special and full of details. If this album is their "OK Computer", "It Beats 4 U" is their "Karma Police".
  84. MatthewI
    Oct 21, 2005
    10
    Awesome! I had heard of MMJ before, but steered clear to avoid the C&W influence that just veered their big sound away from my true comfort zone, but 'Z' is magnificent. Like Pink Floyd with a sense of humour, Sigur Ros with lyrics and songs and Radiohead without the obnoxious, self-importance. I LOVE Z.
  85. Rob
    Oct 20, 2005
    9
    I like to see how an album stands up over time and repeated listens, but its gonna be up there for albums of the year. A great smoky 70's rock rhythm, but the oompah band (also feat M.Ward) on track 6, into the woods detracts from the rest for me. Maybe they wanted to break things up, maybe one of them's an acid freak and they had to let him contribute one track, I dont know, I like to see how an album stands up over time and repeated listens, but its gonna be up there for albums of the year. A great smoky 70's rock rhythm, but the oompah band (also feat M.Ward) on track 6, into the woods detracts from the rest for me. Maybe they wanted to break things up, maybe one of them's an acid freak and they had to let him contribute one track, I dont know, but i'll be setting a playlist to remove track 6. Expand
  86. JeffM
    Oct 20, 2005
    9
    About as close to perfection as an album can get. Instantly listenable and amazingly varied. Truly there is a vision here: redemption, heartache, beauty. And somehow these disparate vignettes come together to create a larger picture that can only be understood when the album is considered as a whole. Forget the comparisons other "reviewers" have made. They transcend genres and won't About as close to perfection as an album can get. Instantly listenable and amazingly varied. Truly there is a vision here: redemption, heartache, beauty. And somehow these disparate vignettes come together to create a larger picture that can only be understood when the album is considered as a whole. Forget the comparisons other "reviewers" have made. They transcend genres and won't properly fit into the suprisingly narrow construct of "Indie rock." Indeed, MMJ have created something more substantial and substantive than anybody expected, and we're all better off for it. Expand
  87. DrGoob
    Oct 20, 2005
    7
    I was amazed to see this album rush straight to top of 2005 (and indeed into the all time top 10). Given that this album has scored higher than the likes of Illinios, CYHSY or The Woods means it must be pretty special. Right? Right? But now that I've listened to Z, I'm sorely disappointed. This is not even close to the best of 2005. I'll admit that Z has a strong start, but I was amazed to see this album rush straight to top of 2005 (and indeed into the all time top 10). Given that this album has scored higher than the likes of Illinios, CYHSY or The Woods means it must be pretty special. Right? Right? But now that I've listened to Z, I'm sorely disappointed. This is not even close to the best of 2005. I'll admit that Z has a strong start, but 'Into The Woods' is a such a weak song (with obnoxious sound effect samples to boot) that it spoils the momentum of the first 5 songs, and the last half can only make a half-hearted attempt to recover. After about 5 or 6 listens to Z, I have no inclination to listen to it again past the catchy 'Wordless Chorus'. The reverb over the nasal vocals becomes irritating on many tracks, and in many places the tunes are gratingly immature (for example, the start of 'What A Wonderful Man' or "Into The Woods'). Calling things you don't like overrated is a bit of a cliche around here (almost as much as giving something 10 and calling it album of the year), but the fact is that Z really is overrated, dammit. Expand
  88. MK
    Oct 19, 2005
    9
    Very good Jacket LP. They r refining their sound - sounds polished (in a good way). They still sound like N.Young/Flaming Lips in an abstract way, and like those artists they continue to change/evolve.
  89. SamL
    Oct 18, 2005
    10
    The best Album I've boughten this year. I only wish it were longer. MMJ has been one of my favorite artists for quite a while and they continue to improve with each release.
  90. AaronA
    Oct 17, 2005
    10
    This is their best record yet. A little discipline goes a long way.
  91. NabilA
    Oct 15, 2005
    10
    Incredible. My Morning Jacket has evolved from a deep alt-country-rock band into a modern-day powerhouse. Z, for the lack of a better word, is perfect. Finally, Jim James's voice is allowed to shine and for the first time, the music and the arrangements are tight and cohesive. My Morning Jacket has successfully mastered the art of melody and they use their awesome powers to transform Incredible. My Morning Jacket has evolved from a deep alt-country-rock band into a modern-day powerhouse. Z, for the lack of a better word, is perfect. Finally, Jim James's voice is allowed to shine and for the first time, the music and the arrangements are tight and cohesive. My Morning Jacket has successfully mastered the art of melody and they use their awesome powers to transform and lead the mind to wonderful places. Z is incredible. 50 years from now, when someone says "My Morning Jacket", they'll automatically associate them with this modern-day masterpiece that is "Z". Expand
  92. DavidR
    Oct 15, 2005
    9
    Very infectous - not the same atmospheric, country road sound that I guess made this band a name for itself, but one hell of a lot more fun - you don't have to be in a reflective mood to enjoy it. I might give it a 10 if it grows on me any more than it already has.
  93. DocD
    Oct 15, 2005
    9
    There aren't any bad songs on this disc, and a few ("Off the Record" and "Knot Comes Loose" leap to mind) are simply gorgeous. There are only a couple real rock songs, and they work pretty well, but the slower tracks are the album's real strength. Great album overall, behind only The National for my favorite of the year so far. I'd have voted it 10 if I hadn't had to There aren't any bad songs on this disc, and a few ("Off the Record" and "Knot Comes Loose" leap to mind) are simply gorgeous. There are only a couple real rock songs, and they work pretty well, but the slower tracks are the album's real strength. Great album overall, behind only The National for my favorite of the year so far. I'd have voted it 10 if I hadn't had to spend a a half-hour trying to bypass the copy protection so it could even play properly on my computer (a weird side-effect of Sony/BMG's war with Apple). Expand
  94. MusicMaven
    Oct 15, 2005
    9
    Z is a leaner and cleaner refinement of their trademark sound. MMJ has evolved from alt-country beginnings to a more universal, rootsy indie-rock. They selected only their very best songs for this album and reined in the urge to jam for too long. The result is their most consistent and appealing album to date. It should please longtime fans, and provides a great introduction for Z is a leaner and cleaner refinement of their trademark sound. MMJ has evolved from alt-country beginnings to a more universal, rootsy indie-rock. They selected only their very best songs for this album and reined in the urge to jam for too long. The result is their most consistent and appealing album to date. It should please longtime fans, and provides a great introduction for newcomers. Undoubtedly one of the best albums of 2005. Expand
  95. matta
    Oct 14, 2005
    9
    This album definitely requires repeated listens. At first, I thought it was only decent and would have given it a 7 probably had I posted the first week that it came out. But, after a week and a half of playing it every day, I can say that while not the best of the year, or even top ten probably, it is very good.
  96. KellyH
    Oct 13, 2005
    9
    What a fabulous album!! They have really refined their style since 'It Still Moves'. The same great melodies and choruses are there, but the songs no longer degenerate into 8-minute jam sessions. In fact, I think the average track length has come down by 3 minutes....
  97. widespreadfred
    Oct 12, 2005
    7
    Z was the CD I most anticipated this year. Unfortunately, it fails to move me like It Still Moves and At Dawn both of which I still listen to repeatedly. Good CD? yes, but I haven't listened to it for a few days.
  98. daxr
    Oct 12, 2005
    7
    a curve ball. maybe the new direction of this band. songs like 'i will sing you songs' had a lot of people thinking these guys were the american rock version of sigur ros. they're not. this album is really very good. probably should be an 8. but i just can't help being disappointed by it every time i listen to it, and am baffled by the 100s it's receiving from so a curve ball. maybe the new direction of this band. songs like 'i will sing you songs' had a lot of people thinking these guys were the american rock version of sigur ros. they're not. this album is really very good. probably should be an 8. but i just can't help being disappointed by it every time i listen to it, and am baffled by the 100s it's receiving from so many critics. i guess it's just the de rigueur thing to do. it's got some good songs but no great ones. they don't work as well together as i want them to. and then there's 'into the woods.' i declare 2005 the year of whimsy. everyone's getting a little carried away with their muses. devendra banhart just floated away with it on cripple crow, and mmj does the same on this album. there's little weight here. there's less depth. there's no hook as grand as just because i do or mahgeetah. the reverb (which some people are still complaining about) has been toned down too much. it's too heavy on the slick and too light on the atmosphere. Expand
  99. EricR
    Oct 11, 2005
    10
    Numbers 2, 8,9,10 over and over until you have your fill then just let it run in your car full time. The jacket's best work to date. its scary how good this band is.
  100. de
    Oct 11, 2005
    10
    Best album of the year
Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. A modern day classic.
  2. What you can expect is what makes My Morning Jacket tried and true: bigger-than-life lyrics, classic rock swagger, and the need to move forward.
  3. Mojo
    100
    With Z, My Morning Jacket have left their comfort zone, assumed the mantle of firebrands, and delivered a truly momentous work. [Oct 2005, p.96]