I have looked at this interface in ads, etc. I kept thinking that it seemed "very busy" to me personally. It just looked "wrong" to me. In fairness, I really have not heard too many actual win8 users say what I am thinking so, I figured that I was the odd-ball.
I did the same thing - slowly migrating to the familiar Desktop.
I never did figure out what was supposed to be wrong with the old Start menu. I guess when you've got market control, you don't have to consult with consumers.
Ofu, Manu'a, American Samoa
That screen is basically the old start menu with enhancements. Basically they changed to that so it would work better for devices with a touch screen interface like tablets.
You can configure Win8 to boot straight to the desktop if you prefer, and then launch the start screen by pressing the window key rather than clicking the start button. It's not really much of a change in the end.