Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2023
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Privacy Policy

Misery Loves Co. > Your Vision Was Never Mine to Share > Reviews > lostalbumguru
Misery Loves Co. - Your Vision Was Never Mine to Share

Not Bad, Not Great - 69%

lostalbumguru, November 19th, 2023
Written based on this version: 2000, CD, Earache Records

Your Vision was Never Mine to Share is Misery Loves Co.’s most polished album, but by the time it was released the world had gone full nu-metal, physical media was uncool, and nightclub hedonism was the lifestyle du-jour. Who knows which one leads to the other, but the third Misery... album is kind of all Nine Inch Nails, all alternative rock, a certain amount nu-metal, and not half as heavy and eccentric as the first two 1990s albums. You could argue a case for maturation, but you could also argue a case for lacking the balls to really kick off in the opposite direction and produce a really off-putting heavy industrial album, which the band certainly had in them. So as a compromise album, how is Your Vision was Never Mine to Share?

The album title gives a hint: the songs are more conversations to themselves, Into the Grey is a pretty cool nu-metal banger, but the lyrics lack the weirdness and unhappy poetry of previous albums. However the chorus is excellent and haunting, and the first verse sets up the tone for the album generally,

Let's break the silence of this town tonight
Alive and kicking like never before
Now let them know we're still around
Never gave us much, we still want more

Sadly, many of the key refrains on Your Vision... are cliché. Metal doesn’t need more lyrics with stock phrases sung over and over. Thematically the songs on Your Vision... are oriented around suicide, insomnia, relationship woes. All perfect for nightclubs of the time and place, but unless those topics are written really well, they lack heft and meaning. They even lack a sense of transgression due to overexposure in the genre in that time period. It’s a real shame because if Misery Loves Co. had fully committed to making that kind of album as a sign-off, there are enough drops of gold here to convince the listener of the band’s ongoing merits. The chorus on Rise and Fall sums up all this nearly-aptness nicely.

In some ways, despite being their almost final release Misery Loves Co. lost their vibe on Your Vision..., with nothing much to say even though some of the music is pretty good. You sense the ideas, musically and lyrically, are lacking self-confidence. There’s enough here to suggest a great nu-metal album, or even a decent Misery... album, but neither is fully realised. Some of the songs sound like cast-offs from Therapy?’s late 90s malaise. Some songs sound almost as good as their earlier material but number too few, and even then, they aren’t quite as heavy and eerie. The metallic harshness has been reined in, and what’s left are just stylistic or atmospheric tropes, with no gut-impact. Your Vision... is the perfect album for the nothing period of 98-01. Apart from some good extreme metal albums, every other cultural endeavour was going nowhere at the time, and there's a listlessness here that fits the time period.

Never Gonna Grow Up is as bad as its title suggests, but When Everything Dies is Gothic Industrial of a decent level. Your Vision... frustrates the listener by offering hints of high quality music and insightful lyrics, but then undermines both by offering trite lyrics akin to Papa Roach, or tedious chord progressions lacking the dark cyber-corruption of previous albums.

On the plus side Dahlstedt’s drumming is excellent throughout, human-sounding and full of catchy beats but precise and sonically machine-like when it counts. No Exit rolls along like a heavy version of The Cardigans, before going legitimately heavy and throwing up an interesting chorus. Again, things are neither here nor there, and the good ideas on Your Vision... are curtailed or simplified. Misery... could have been the band to drop a nu-metal masterpiece at the apex of that era, but instead their last release for nearly 20 years, doesn’t hit home one way or another. The edgy moments seem light, and the heavy moments don’t breathe enough, and the vibe is just a tiny bit too commercial. The real Misery Loves Co. 1990s vibe was far too nasty for commercial acceptance, and the 2000 version of the band is too insipid to be truly interesting.

The samples and programming on Your Vision... are both really well-integrated but they don’t have enough bite to lift the music. Wirén’s vocals are in fine form, but their sub-Depeche Mode timbre is tedious; you can't emote mediocre song concepts and passé lyrics. The lyrics consistently hint at dark themes, but don’t explicate them beyond a kind of low key urban night-time poetry, and the slightly immature wordage is disappointing. Just listen to Depeche Mode or Nine Inch Nails for that kind of vibe done well, rather than Misery Loves Co. trying to be those bands.

The mix is excellent on Your Vision was Never Mine to Share, and the album still sounds crisp and fresh in 2023. So, overall, some good songs, a couple of duds, a lack of the old 1990s hardness, a lack of focus, and a slight disposability. On the plus side, the average level of Your Vision... is still quite good, and the overall listening experience is O.K. A bad Misery Loves Co. Album is still produced really well, not exactly lightweight, and scattered throughout you’ll hear some extreme and heavy industrial weirdness and hints at what nu-metal could have been. So, frustrating rather than bad. Really well-assembled mediocrity, rather than total pointlessness.