On his debut for Columbia Records, Pete Yorn wears his heart on his sleeve like Ryan Adams, sings in a husky croon similar to Jakob Dylan, and earnestly plays into passion and emotion like Jeff Buckley. The year 2001 belonged to Yorn, and his critical praise was not unwarranted, with Musicforthemorningafter marking the stunning beginning of a long, varied career. It's a raw selection of heartland and American trad rock, yet Yorn's love for Brit-pop is also quite evident, with several breezy acoustic-based songs ("Sense," "Simonize") resembling threads of the Smiths. Yorn's voice may crack at points, but it contributes to the dusty feeling of the entire album, which is leanly orchestrated with a mix of guitar, harmonica, and a standard rhythm section. The debut single "Life on a Chain" kicks things off with appropriate twang, featuring a slightly slurred melody that helped earned the song a spot on modern rock radio, while songs like "Just Another" prove that Yorn can also work his way around a ballad. Musicforthemorningafter arrived when modern rock was looking for an outlet to escape alternative metal's popularity, but the album's popularity wasn't a calculated thing. With a poppy core and some rough-around-the-edges wrapping paper, Pete Yorn turned his debut into the perfect cure for those who were sick of the previous decade's music.
AllMusic Review by MacKenzie Wilson