His daughter, singer-songwriterShana Morrison performed duets with her father on two tracks, "You Don't Know Me" and "I'll Never Be Free". "Ancient Highway" was nine minutes long and contained the words "praying to my higher self/Don't let me down". It is said to be the one song on the album where he comes closest to following his muse. The title track has continued to be a popular song in concert to the present day. Most of the songs are reflective and seem to come during a time of self-examination. "No Religion" came about Morrison explained when he was thinking: "Wouldn't it be great just to be born and nobody told you there was such a thing as religion? Say it didn't exist and you were just told that all you've got is this life and that's it...and there's no heaven, no hell." The song, "Songwriter" spoke of his songwriting techniques as a practical application instead of inspired as in the past. "Meloncholia" and "Underlying Depression" continue the theme of soul searching.
At the time of its release in 1995, Days Like This was Morrison's best selling non-compilation album and was nominated for the Mercury Music Award. David Sinclair in Q describes the album as a "glorious return to form", while the Entertainment Weekly reviewer found that "Days Like This, is too perfunctory to call it a return to form. But, surprisingly, there is real spark." Other reviews were less enthusiastic: Tom Moon's Rolling Stone review states: "There are moments of genius followed by lavish displays of questionable taste, sometimes within the same song." The Music Box rated it with 3 stars and mildly endorsed it: "The latest release from Van Morrison is really only for his true fans. It's enjoyable, but it doesn't seem as inspired as his last few albums."Allmusic summed it up as an album that is a "completely competent yet completely uninspired pop-R&B workout, with Van sounding as if he couldn't care less about the words leaving his mouth." 
The cover of the album showed Morrison and his (then) girlfriend, (now wife) Michelle Rocca walking a pair of greyhounds. It was his first album in 24 years to feature a female companion on the cover. The last had been the cover of Tupelo Honey with his then-wife Janet "Planet" Rigsbee.