There are still times it frustrates a bit too. The special edition has the original lyric sheets not the lyrics that are on the final recorded version and there are some disregarded lines or verses which are really good and thus seem a bit wasted being cut out, not for quality reasons but so as to fit the lyrics in with a traditional rock or pop song structure. There are also times when it seems like the production from Steve Albini has been reigned in and given a bit of a gloss. So in some ways it is a bit of a compromise from what the album could have been. But this is all with comparision to the Holy Bible, which was a pretty uncompromising album both lyrically and musically. On its own terms 'Journal' is really good, probably my favourite album of the year so far. Never thought i'd ever say that about a Manics album again!
Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in!