User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 568 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 76 out of 568
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  1. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This is absolutely Beyonce's best work to date. And one of the best albums of the year. The writing, the instrumentation, the production...everything about this album just flows. Every song is a winner. She's taken a bit of each genre that's influenced her and mixed them to make an immaculate work of musical art. You can dance, you can groove, you can cry, you can fall in and out of loveThis is absolutely Beyonce's best work to date. And one of the best albums of the year. The writing, the instrumentation, the production...everything about this album just flows. Every song is a winner. She's taken a bit of each genre that's influenced her and mixed them to make an immaculate work of musical art. You can dance, you can groove, you can cry, you can fall in and out of love with this album. Expand
  2. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    With titles such as "I Care" and "Rather Die Young" I was ready to be sung to sleep. I wasn't, Beyoncé blew me away with this collection of beautiful, soulful songs. The Ballads are what make this record, contrary to what some of these "critics" are saying. Hands down the best album I've heard vocal wise from any pop artist in years. She's an upcoming legend, more than that,With titles such as "I Care" and "Rather Die Young" I was ready to be sung to sleep. I wasn't, Beyoncé blew me away with this collection of beautiful, soulful songs. The Ballads are what make this record, contrary to what some of these "critics" are saying. Hands down the best album I've heard vocal wise from any pop artist in years. She's an upcoming legend, more than that, an icon. Brava Beyoncé! Expand
  3. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    4 is the more developed, mature, and experienced sister album of 2006's B'Day. With convincing emotion, shocking vulnerability, and slick cohesive production to tie it altogether, Beyonce delivered the best album of 2011 and also her career.
  4. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Beautiful album, possibly her best. Her voice has so much power and the uptempo songs are so good. And ou can't forget about the deluxe tracks, they're all amazing! Expand
  5. Jun 30, 2011
    10
    Beyoncé is one of the only remaining worldwide sensations, a diva who has more than earned her mononomial recognition; to underestimate her is to appear sour or stupid, or both.

    And so it should come as no surprise that 4 is hardly the debacle some have predicted; to the contrary, it's difficult to imagine any long-standing admirer feeling even the slightest disappointment
    Beyoncé is one of the only remaining worldwide sensations, a diva who has more than earned her mononomial recognition; to underestimate her is to appear sour or stupid, or both.

    And so it should come as no surprise that 4 is hardly the debacle some have predicted; to the contrary, it's difficult to imagine any long-standing admirer feeling even the slightest disappointment with the record. True, it does not contain a single as immortal or immediately recognizable as "Crazy in Love" or "Single Ladies," but it also contains far less filler than the albums that feature those blockbusters. In many ways, 4 most closely resembles B'Day, Beyoncé's sophomore stumble: neither record possesses a clear thematic concept or authorial voice, but both display Beyoncé's willingness to experiment with more adventurous sounds, sometimes at the hazard of irritating her more conservative fans.

    Beyoncé hasn't produced anything as ferocious (or obnoxious) as "Ring the Alarm" on her fourth album, but "Countdown," a maximalist dancehall-cum-Baltimore drum banger, comes close. Packing steel drums, regal fanfare, a stealthy Boyz-II-Men sample, and the most exuberant vocal performance of the album into a deliciously overstuffed three and a half minutes, "Countdown" sounds like the work of an artist who is trying too hard to produce a classic (see: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy), but over-eager as it might be, the song succeeds at what it sets out to achieve: It annoys its way into your heart.

    Aside from the aggressive rhythms of "Countdown" and "Girls," 4 is, for the most part, a slow-building, slow-burning growth spurt of an album. Of its 12 tracks, only "I Was Here" and "Best Thing I Never Had"are aligned along Nathan Rabin's "I'm awesome. **** you." thematic axis. In fact, over the first three songs â
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  6. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This album surpasses everything she's ever done. This album for me showcases what made B'day a success for me. It's that no one else...no other artist can do these songs. The vocals are beyond amazing and make you want to listen to the songs and you believe the things she's singing about. I am so glad that she took a risk and put this out.
  7. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Beyonce has came and with a SOLID, GREAT album. From track 1 to track 12 (or 15 with the deluxe). This is the first album in along time that every song on the album is just a great as the next. No Pop Gimmicks here, Beyonce is the truth. Her voice has matured and her lyrics has too. She teamed up with The Dream, Frank Ocean, Ester Dean, Baby Face, Shea Taylor, Diplo & Switch, & DianeBeyonce has came and with a SOLID, GREAT album. From track 1 to track 12 (or 15 with the deluxe). This is the first album in along time that every song on the album is just a great as the next. No Pop Gimmicks here, Beyonce is the truth. Her voice has matured and her lyrics has too. She teamed up with The Dream, Frank Ocean, Ester Dean, Baby Face, Shea Taylor, Diplo & Switch, & Diane Warren to produce this Classic piece. Beyonce is an underrated producer and vocalist who is here to prove her critics wrong. Expand
  8. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This is an awesome album. I am happy to have the pleasure of listening to it. First of all, the vocal arrangements are outstanding. Lots of beautiful, rich harmonies, strong vocal depth and great syncopation. Listen to End of Time, Party and Love on Top for what I speak of. In fact, I will say that there are AT LEAST 5 songs that are the best Beyoncé songs that she has everThis is an awesome album. I am happy to have the pleasure of listening to it. First of all, the vocal arrangements are outstanding. Lots of beautiful, rich harmonies, strong vocal depth and great syncopation. Listen to End of Time, Party and Love on Top for what I speak of. In fact, I will say that there are AT LEAST 5 songs that are the best Beyoncé songs that she has ever recorded and I have been a Bey fan since the Survivor era. You can tell Bey really put her heart and soul into the vocals. The production is strong. The best of it, is the the work that Jeff Bhasker and The Dream did. Schoolin' Life is everything!!!! Ester Dean also did a great job with Countdown too. The lyrics which some people always say is a weak spot with Beyoncé's music, are very good. Now I am one who always view, Vocals/Sound>>>Lyrics so if someone wanted to cover Mary had a Lil Lamb and gave a Grammy caliber vocal performance, I might buy the Physical Single. But anyways, the lyrics from 4 are very good, and I always find simple is good because when some artists try to be super deep, it takes away from the other aspect of the song, but the good thing is 4 isn't shallow. It's all about love and relationships and it has songs that are for everyone. And it is great she didn't jump on the Electro Pop/Temo Bandwagon that is pervading Pop Entertainment. It may not reinvent the wheel so to speak, but sets itself apart that way and more important, if you love outstanding musician from the aspect of vocal arrangements, you will love this album. Expand
  9. Jun 28, 2011
    9
    - This album is a whole lot different than I Am... Sasha Fierce and with this album Beyonce takes B'Day one step forward. The album reflects B's real personality and is not afraid of revealing even her most vulnerable sides. "End of Time", "Love on Top", and "I Care" are amazing! She is amazingly talented and there's no comparison to her art!
  10. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Flawless album. Beyonce shows her growth. 4 is very different from a few other mainstream albums now. Beyonce plays with old school beats and creates an album that flows very cohesively. From the haunting 1+1 to the find booty shaker Run The World (Girls). Beyonce sings with such emotion and conviction on the track. Beyonce proves just why she is one of the top females in the game.
  11. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Lyrically, '4' converses on the topics of love and life. The lyrics are maturely complicated, alike the topics they explore on this album. Vocally, Beyoncé craftily incorporates voice techniques that further lyrical emphasis. Thematically,
  12. Jun 30, 2011
    10
    Beyonce has capitalized on her positives and put forth, what I think, may be her second best or even best album. Beyonce's vocals on this album are undeniably at a peak. The range of her voice and the complexity of the vocal harmonies have not been seen since B'day, arguably since DIL. She demonstrates how aggressive her voice can be on "Run the World (Girls)" and "I Care", one of theBeyonce has capitalized on her positives and put forth, what I think, may be her second best or even best album. Beyonce's vocals on this album are undeniably at a peak. The range of her voice and the complexity of the vocal harmonies have not been seen since B'day, arguably since DIL. She demonstrates how aggressive her voice can be on "Run the World (Girls)" and "I Care", one of the immediate highlights of the album. However this album isn't all about aggressiveness, she displays subtle emotion on "I Miss", which shows just how talented the singer is at changing the emotional display she puts on with her voice. Vocals are not the only showcase of this album. The lyrics within each song are simple, however they are effective, and at times witty. It's amazingly produced as an eclectic mix of many genres, however it all flows together very well. From the throwback "Love on Top", which once again displays the singer's gifted vocals, to the futuristic-african horn-driven End of Time, the albums rhythmic foundation doesn't fail to excite. My favorite production may come from the Kanye West produced track "Party". This is one of the most genuine sounding early 90's tributes I've ever heard, this on top of Beyonce's ingenious vocal production on the song. I feel like this album could be her best. Expand
  13. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    i love this album so much, is so different to her previous jobs, she sounds perfect in every aspect and this album has a great production!!! this is my favorite album fo the year...so far!!!
  14. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    '4' showcases Beyonce's vulnerability as a woman with emotional songs such as 'I Care' and 'I Miss You'. The album is magnificent, though I would prefer it if 'Best Thing I Never Had' or 'End of Time' would have been the lead single instead of 'Run the World (Girls)', because 'RTW(G)' is really average compared to the other songs in the album. I understand Bey's intentions though, since'4' showcases Beyonce's vulnerability as a woman with emotional songs such as 'I Care' and 'I Miss You'. The album is magnificent, though I would prefer it if 'Best Thing I Never Had' or 'End of Time' would have been the lead single instead of 'Run the World (Girls)', because 'RTW(G)' is really average compared to the other songs in the album. I understand Bey's intentions though, since her previous lead singles were mostly uptempo songs, and I think since the album only has two of them, 'RTW(G)' was a better choice. And I think it is. However, all of the tracks on the album are outstanding in its own way. 'I Miss You' and 'I Was Here' are truly masterpieces and are the highlights of this album. Expand
  15. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    very good album. her best and one of the best released this year! great mixture of everything and i applaud her for sticking to her guns (releasing the music she wants).
  16. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Beyonce is one of those artists where you really just wonder, "What is she going to do next?" While this album is in no way shocking, gimmicky or explosive in content, it confirms that Beyonce has reached a level where she is comfortable as an artist. She could have easily followed current trends of the industry (which is drowning by the minute in Euro-pop/Dance tracks), but she chose toBeyonce is one of those artists where you really just wonder, "What is she going to do next?" While this album is in no way shocking, gimmicky or explosive in content, it confirms that Beyonce has reached a level where she is comfortable as an artist. She could have easily followed current trends of the industry (which is drowning by the minute in Euro-pop/Dance tracks), but she chose to start in a lane that SHE felt most comfortable. I dig it. Expand
  17. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Beyoncé has grown so much and it really shows. This is certainly her best album yet. This woman has such a powerful voice, I wish her all the best with this release and I hope I get to go to one of her shows.
  18. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Beyonce never really convinced me with her previous albums and I can now say that this album ticked every box in the checklist. This album is different to anything she has ever done. It is an album where she showcases her stunning voice with some beautiful ballads and mid-tempo tracks. There are still some tracks where it makes want to get up and dance. I predict big things for this albumBeyonce never really convinced me with her previous albums and I can now say that this album ticked every box in the checklist. This album is different to anything she has ever done. It is an album where she showcases her stunning voice with some beautiful ballads and mid-tempo tracks. There are still some tracks where it makes want to get up and dance. I predict big things for this album because it is a quality piece of work and I would say that this is one of my favourite albums this year if not the best. Expand
  19. Aug 1, 2011
    10
    Beyoncé's best album! 4 is a masterpiece, it doesn't follow the trashy top charters songs nowadays, it's creative, pure, genuine and have such quality that you cannot stop playing it, and it's an album that you can't skip one single song. Everything sounds magical, very deep, we can clearly see that Beyoncé put all her love and soul into this record. She knowsBeyoncé's best album! 4 is a masterpiece, it doesn't follow the trashy top charters songs nowadays, it's creative, pure, genuine and have such quality that you cannot stop playing it, and it's an album that you can't skip one single song. Everything sounds magical, very deep, we can clearly see that Beyoncé put all her love and soul into this record. She knows perfectly what she does, she's the type of woman that you can't predict her next move, she will always surprise you and she can do no wrong, that's only one of the reasons why I respect her so much, she's a huge inspiration for me and so many others.
    It's a perfect album, I bet you won't even be able to choose your favorite track! All hail to the Queen!
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  20. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    4 is definitely Beyonce's best album along with B'Day. Beyonce delivers what she's best at: belting her voice in the classic tune. It's like she wants to tell everyone that she doesn't need silly autotunes or eurodance music to sell an album. The album screams quality as the music on every songs are full of experiment. African beats, rock, 80s R&B and more genre were mixed into one4 is definitely Beyonce's best album along with B'Day. Beyonce delivers what she's best at: belting her voice in the classic tune. It's like she wants to tell everyone that she doesn't need silly autotunes or eurodance music to sell an album. The album screams quality as the music on every songs are full of experiment. African beats, rock, 80s R&B and more genre were mixed into one masterpiece album.

    Best cut: Love on Top, I Care, I Miss You, Schoolin Life, End of Time.
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  21. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    I admit that I was resistant towards this album due to the underwhelming first single that kicked off this project. However, once the album leaked online a month ago and I heard favorable feedback from music lovers whose taste & opinions I trust. I thought I'd give it a listen. To my surprise, the single "Run the World (Girls)" sounded the most out of place concerning the rest of theI admit that I was resistant towards this album due to the underwhelming first single that kicked off this project. However, once the album leaked online a month ago and I heard favorable feedback from music lovers whose taste & opinions I trust. I thought I'd give it a listen. To my surprise, the single "Run the World (Girls)" sounded the most out of place concerning the rest of the material. I don't know who convinced her to even include it let alone release it as a first single. The whole album is an eclectic body of work drawing musical influences from Fela Kuti, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Prince, The Stylistics and oddly Phil Collins on the somber "I Miss You" written by Frank Ocean.

    Although a great singer & performer, I always thought something was lacking on Beyoncé's albums. This year long break she purportedly took to create this album did a service to her because this is her most inspired work to date. It's also her strongest lyrically, production wise, and vocally (the girl has pipes!). Ironically, I was most impressed that she didn't follow this Euro-pop trend that has plagued the musical climate over the last 2-3 years. I had to give her extra points for that detail alone. Having said that, I just bought my first Beyoncé album, June 28th, and I have no regrets. I recommend it for any music lover.
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  22. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    I really enjoyed this album, it was a huge change from "I Am...Sasha Fierce" but a change for the better. It was both a throwback album and progressive at the same time. Beyonce not only reinvents herself but also rediscovers who she was in "Dangerously in Love" an innovator, but respecter of the old school musicians that paved the way for her. I am so glad that 4 came out the way it did.I really enjoyed this album, it was a huge change from "I Am...Sasha Fierce" but a change for the better. It was both a throwback album and progressive at the same time. Beyonce not only reinvents herself but also rediscovers who she was in "Dangerously in Love" an innovator, but respecter of the old school musicians that paved the way for her. I am so glad that 4 came out the way it did. Not too forced, and not slacking at all, not too hot, not too cold, this album is just right. Expand
  23. Sep 4, 2011
    10
    I knoe a lot of the songs on this and best thing i never had and run the world girls! Hope she makes another album like this! I really like this style of Beyonce!
  24. Sep 1, 2011
    9
    with this album, beyonce proved her vocal abilities.. she sacrificed making #1 records for making quality music with great lyrics, and in the end we get a product that seems more mature and raw.. the emotion you hear in beyonce's voice is stunning. there are plenty of tracks that deserve recognition including Start Over, I Miss You, 1+1, and I Was Here; but these are DEFINITELY not thewith this album, beyonce proved her vocal abilities.. she sacrificed making #1 records for making quality music with great lyrics, and in the end we get a product that seems more mature and raw.. the emotion you hear in beyonce's voice is stunning. there are plenty of tracks that deserve recognition including Start Over, I Miss You, 1+1, and I Was Here; but these are DEFINITELY not the only hits on the album. i think every single song on the album is amazing in it's own right, and the more you listen to them the more they grow on you. Expand
  25. Nov 14, 2011
    10
    I love Beyonce and upon first listen, i wasn't sure how i felt about the album, but after the second & Third listen, I appreciated everything about the album, the production, the songwriting, the lyrical content, and her vocal performances. This is by far he best conceptual album to date.
  26. Oct 27, 2011
    9
    Beyonce has really matured and this album shows it. This is her best album and of course, it reach number one. Nice production, sound, lyrics, and songs. Keep up the good work, B.
  27. Jun 29, 2011
    8
    "4" is one of the best mainstream releases of 2011. The album is definitely worth buying. Standout tracks: "Best Thing I Never Had", "Party", "Rather Die Young", "I Was Here".
  28. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This is an amazing album. The instrumentation is rich, the production is full, and the vocals are impeccable. 4 is an album where you will enjoy every song, and IMO will become a classic. This is Beyonce's best work to date, and I'm excited to see what she will come up with next!
  29. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Beyonce showed out with this one! I absolutely love this album! It's definitely her best yet! This is good quality music with vocals out of this world! Definitely one the best albums of the year!
  30. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Beyoncé has certainly outdone herself with this album. This is the most cohesive, understated, and flawless pop album that has been created in the last few years. Beyoncé has truly taken a risk with this album when you look at all of the fist pumping-glow light-rave pop music that is out right now. She has done the complete opposite of what was expected and goneBeyoncé has certainly outdone herself with this album. This is the most cohesive, understated, and flawless pop album that has been created in the last few years. Beyoncé has truly taken a risk with this album when you look at all of the fist pumping-glow light-rave pop music that is out right now. She has done the complete opposite of what was expected and gone her own route and what a turn it was. This album is a lyrical and musical feast that only a King can deliver and in this case that King is clearly Beyoncé and she is here to claim her throne. Expand
  31. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Wonderful album which has most of it's songs capturing soulful singing and style from 70's and 80's inspired uptempos/midtempos. The lyrics also indicate that she is very much in love too (reminiscent to her debut album but a bit more convincing this time). Deluxe Edition bonus tracks are worth checking aswell, as they incorporate legend Prince and The Jackson 5 sound into them. Best R&BWonderful album which has most of it's songs capturing soulful singing and style from 70's and 80's inspired uptempos/midtempos. The lyrics also indicate that she is very much in love too (reminiscent to her debut album but a bit more convincing this time). Deluxe Edition bonus tracks are worth checking aswell, as they incorporate legend Prince and The Jackson 5 sound into them. Best R&B album of the year so far. Expand
  32. Jul 28, 2011
    7
    The album isn't the best I've heard from Beyonce. Yet, I cannot say I am bitterly disappointment. The ballads are just heart-nudging! It moves you, it lights a fire within your soul! Songs such as: Dreaming and Best Thing I Never Had are prefect for any season of the year. They resonate, they relate. But, we cannot also forget the dance-a-thons such as: End of Time or Countdown. They areThe album isn't the best I've heard from Beyonce. Yet, I cannot say I am bitterly disappointment. The ballads are just heart-nudging! It moves you, it lights a fire within your soul! Songs such as: Dreaming and Best Thing I Never Had are prefect for any season of the year. They resonate, they relate. But, we cannot also forget the dance-a-thons such as: End of Time or Countdown. They are simply electrifying. The beats are fast and rhythmic and they get your waist in that gyrating sensation! Just give me some more!

    Yet, with the highs, there are lows. Some other songs are simply average, or worst, bad. Still, a fine effort by Queen B---nothing to scoff at, at all!
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  33. Sep 20, 2011
    8
    Personally I don't mind if Beyonce sales are getting lower each album released, that's the trend nowadays. All I know is "4" is her best album to date. Dangerously in love was 70% fillers; B'Day was ok but there were just a few moments of real vocal amazingness; Sasha was overproduced and there were awful contrasts behind the concept of that alter-ego duel. 4 sounds more confident andPersonally I don't mind if Beyonce sales are getting lower each album released, that's the trend nowadays. All I know is "4" is her best album to date. Dangerously in love was 70% fillers; B'Day was ok but there were just a few moments of real vocal amazingness; Sasha was overproduced and there were awful contrasts behind the concept of that alter-ego duel. 4 sounds more confident and honest, there's a bit of everything Beyonce really knows how to do, there seems to be a heart in every song. The trouble with Run the World as a 1st single had happened several times in the history of pop music, it was a risky decision and probably too avant-gard (might sound a cliche, i know) - i guess we weren't ready for such sound in an era of auto-tune and gaga/kesha-esque productions. Expand
  34. Aug 22, 2011
    10
    "4" by Beyonce is one of the best albums I've heard in the past 2 years. Beyonce took a step above everybody with 4. The album sounds nothing like other Beyonce albums, by this album you can tell Beyonce has matured. Imma start with my cons of the album though: in some songs I think Beyonce over sung a little for an example in "Start Over" I expected her to stay at a softer pace longer"4" by Beyonce is one of the best albums I've heard in the past 2 years. Beyonce took a step above everybody with 4. The album sounds nothing like other Beyonce albums, by this album you can tell Beyonce has matured. Imma start with my cons of the album though: in some songs I think Beyonce over sung a little for an example in "Start Over" I expected her to stay at a softer pace longer than she did. Another con on the album is some of its lyrics. In "I Care" she said "see these tears falling down to my ears" that makes no sense and I'm glad she said it only once. In "Rather die young" she sounds a bit stalkerish with lyrics saying "I rather die young then live my life with out you... I rather not live" thats really all of the cons, for the pro's: She matured and this album proves that. Songs like 1+1, I was here and I miss you shows Beyonce maturity in her voice. Her hook on I miss you is epic. My favorite song is "Love on top" it has a Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson sound to it and Beyonce simply slays every note on that song. Overall the album was good, more women will like this album then her male fans because many of the songs are her being in love except "countdown". For the album itself I would give it an 8 or 8.5 but after listening to the bonus tracks I have no choice but to give her a 10. "Dance for you" is probably the best slow song I've heard in a while maybe since "Disappear" on I am Sasha Fierce. Expand
  35. Aug 23, 2011
    7
    "4" Was certainly an album no one expected Beyonce to deliver. Its very different than her normal radio friendly filled albums. She basically released every song on her last album. Shes changed and went for a more genuine and raw sound. Very R&B and Soul influenced. Her voice has never shined better than it does here. Unfortunately the album as a whole just doesn't grip me in the way past"4" Was certainly an album no one expected Beyonce to deliver. Its very different than her normal radio friendly filled albums. She basically released every song on her last album. Shes changed and went for a more genuine and raw sound. Very R&B and Soul influenced. Her voice has never shined better than it does here. Unfortunately the album as a whole just doesn't grip me in the way past efforts have but I can feel her emotions oozing from these songs. You wont find a more raw album this year than "4." It's a very retro CD and very risky.
    Standouts: I Care, Love On Top and Countdown
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  36. Aug 29, 2011
    7
    Beyonce is quite possibly one of the best musicians of the modern day world. She has the talent and the looks. With '4' Bey shows her true side, expressing every emotion she has. There is a lot to this album. It's more 'Irreplaceable' than 'Single Ladies'. Most of the songs are soulful and express Beyonce's true side.
  37. Aug 29, 2011
    7
    Please excuse my English, I'm a French guy.
    I think this is the first Beyoncé's album I like. The old jam influenced songs give this album some personality. The first time I looked at the cover and the tracklist, I would think this album would be very 'conceptual'. And it is not-so cliché. I love the featuring from Andre 3000, which brings some freshness to
    Please excuse my English, I'm a French guy.
    I think this is the first Beyoncé's album I like. The old jam influenced songs give this album some personality. The first time I looked at the cover and the tracklist, I would think this album would be very 'conceptual'. And it is not-so cliché. I love the featuring from Andre 3000, which brings some freshness to 'Party'. In terms of ballads, I love 'I Was Here', which is very surprising from Beyoncé.

    I also liked the fact that Beyoncé improved herself to choose some producers or writing some excerpts of the songs. Diplo made a good job on 'End of Time'.
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  38. Sep 14, 2011
    10
    '4' is Beyonce best vocal offering to date. It shows her growth not only vocally, but as an overall artist. She proves that she is the voice, artist, and performer of our generation. '4' proves Beyonce is rare. Great album, that will stand the test of time.
  39. Dec 28, 2011
    9
    Much more mature than her new albums. With the exception of "Run The World," the album contains fewer cliche dance numbers as noticed from her previous effort. The album is very well developed and contains the best Beyonce has to offer. Her ballads are the best they have ever been and keep the listener interested with her powerful voice. The overall quality displayed in this album isMuch more mature than her new albums. With the exception of "Run The World," the album contains fewer cliche dance numbers as noticed from her previous effort. The album is very well developed and contains the best Beyonce has to offer. Her ballads are the best they have ever been and keep the listener interested with her powerful voice. The overall quality displayed in this album is visible as Beyonce goes from song to song effortlessly. With songs like "Best Thing I Never Had," "Love On Top," "Party," and "End of Time," the listener notices a much more mature side to Beyonce. She's no longer trying to appeal to the radio with pop songs like that from her previous albums, but more for the listener to enjoy. Overall, it is a timeless album that one can listen to again and again and still feel freshed. Although some songs seem like fillers --Rather Die Young-- the rest of the album shines. Definitely one of the best albums of 2011. Expand
  40. Aug 3, 2012
    10
    With "4" Beyoncé really proves that she is still the Queen of R&B. The album consists of soaring and emotional ballads like 1+1, I Care, I Miss You, Rather Die Young, I Was Here; amazing midtempos with sensual vocals - Party, Love on Top, Schoolin' Life and risky uptempos like End of Time, Countdown and Run the World (Girls). As a whole, the album is so cohesive and it is a piece of art.
  41. Jun 2, 2013
    10
    4 was a labor of love, as Beyonce said and it shows in each ballad, each over the top vocal bridge that she conquers in this album. The album puts R&B music right back on its track with 'I Care' and 'Love On Top'. 'I was here' inspires and 'I miss you' soothes the mind.
    An absolute expression of true and raw emotions through music.....by Mrs. Carter.
  42. Dec 16, 2014
    8
    Undoubtedly the best of her album, all tracks can be good and fun, dancing has its moments, its romantic moments, all that is needed in an album, I hope the next it has something inspired by this.
    Highlights: Countdown and Run The World
    Lows: Lay Up Under Me and Rather Die Young
  43. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This has to be her best album yet. So intimate, so powerful, so Beyonce. The best tracks are by far The End Of Time, Love On Top, Schoolin' Life and Dance For You. 1+1 and I Miss You are the ballads I've been expecting her to do and we also have some really awesome mid-tempos (Party, Best Thing I Never Had, Lay Up Under Me). I appreciate Run The World and Countdown for their magnificentThis has to be her best album yet. So intimate, so powerful, so Beyonce. The best tracks are by far The End Of Time, Love On Top, Schoolin' Life and Dance For You. 1+1 and I Miss You are the ballads I've been expecting her to do and we also have some really awesome mid-tempos (Party, Best Thing I Never Had, Lay Up Under Me). I appreciate Run The World and Countdown for their magnificent beats and the vocals on Start Over and Rather Die Young are just so good .I Care is one of the best ballads lately and contains some amazing vocals. The only song I'm not really into is I Was Here which I extremely hate. Overall, the best album this year (I like her more than Adele) with some songs to remember. Expand
  44. Jul 1, 2011
    9
    Mesmerizing! Even though Lady Gaga is my favorite singer, "4" is better than "Born This Way". "1+1," "Best Thing I Never Had," and "Countdown" are all fantastic. This album deserves to go platinum.
  45. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Classic, timeless, different, soulful, mature, experienced and incredible album. The best album Beyoncé has released to date, expanding on her previous masterpieces to create a completely new 'brand' of music unique to 'King B'. I love it...'Miss You', 'I Care', 'End of Time' and 'Countdown' are personal highlights.
  46. Jul 1, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This album is what we needed from Beyoncé after I Am...Sasha Fierce it's so perfectly hot, I remember listening while I was walking and I was surprised by every song I simply enjoyed every work in every track. Well Done!!! Expand
  47. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This album is by far the best album she has ever released. She's gone back to her R&B roots and yet still maintained that commercial and appealing element that her previous three albums had. Her voice has matured and the emotion on her records has definitely been upped. I cannot begin to recommend this album more. The best album of 2011 and most definitely her entire recording career.
  48. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This album is amazing! The production, the lyrical content and the vocals take you over the edge and sends you free-falling into a state of euphoria. There aren't enough adjectives in the English language to describe Beyonce's greatest album to date. As a fan, I am extremely pleased she didn't follow the euro-pop throwaway easy hit trends so many utilize in music today. Beyonce savedThis album is amazing! The production, the lyrical content and the vocals take you over the edge and sends you free-falling into a state of euphoria. There aren't enough adjectives in the English language to describe Beyonce's greatest album to date. As a fan, I am extremely pleased she didn't follow the euro-pop throwaway easy hit trends so many utilize in music today. Beyonce saved us all from the generic music we're bombarded with daily. It would have been quite simple to give us what every artist out now, aside from Adele, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott, have offered. For this fearlessness Beyonce WILL be rewarded.

    Thank you Beyonce! We love you... I love you.
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  49. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    I'm loving this new Beyonce! The best track off the album are: Best Thing I Never Had, Love On Top, End Of Time, Party, I Miss You
    It gives a lot of freshness to this boring music industry!
  50. Jul 2, 2011
    10
    I have to admit - it took Run The World (Girls) a while until I understood the genious of it. But once I got into it - I couldn't stop listenning to it. Same thing happened with 4. I had to give it a few listens until I realised how good it is. It really is a brilliant album, and Beyonce proves once again that she doesn't gimmics and conterversy in order to put a good album. She only needsI have to admit - it took Run The World (Girls) a while until I understood the genious of it. But once I got into it - I couldn't stop listenning to it. Same thing happened with 4. I had to give it a few listens until I realised how good it is. It really is a brilliant album, and Beyonce proves once again that she doesn't gimmics and conterversy in order to put a good album. She only needs her huge talent. And it works. Expand
  51. Jul 1, 2011
    10
    Just when you think you have summed up Beyonce, She comes up with a sound that surpasses genre specification. The production of this album is so good, her vocals are gracioslly well controlled,and the emotions are saw raw,her homaqe to many musical eras work cohesively to produce this masterpiece
  52. Jul 2, 2011
    8
    Who can improve I am... Sasha Fierce? Only Beyonce cans, And she did it? Maybe yes, maybe not. But who cares? This is a completely new album, different and personal. She has experimented onto herself, "it´s not pop, not r&b...is just everything she loves" PRINCE, WITHNEY HOUSTON, MAJOR LAZER and africans sounds, also 70`s and 80`s sounds... Maybe the songs aren´tWho can improve I am... Sasha Fierce? Only Beyonce cans, And she did it? Maybe yes, maybe not. But who cares? This is a completely new album, different and personal. She has experimented onto herself, "it´s not pop, not r&b...is just everything she loves" PRINCE, WITHNEY HOUSTON, MAJOR LAZER and africans sounds, also 70`s and 80`s sounds... Maybe the songs aren´t hits or full sold succeses...but is "good music" music from the soul, only Beyonce cans do it and sing it. 4 brings us the perfect sounds of a wonderful woman voice, is like watching a Beyonce´s Live Concert, strenght, sensibility, dreams,hope,love... Is just nice, and i can´t stop to watch it, "End Of Time","I Care","Countdown" or "Love on top" are my favourites. I hope one of these songs will be succesful, because Bey has to do it again, she has to conquer all of us, now or never. Expand
  53. Jul 7, 2011
    9
    Beyonce has been in the game for almost 15 years now and this album shows how maturer she has become and how much she has grown as an artist. She doesn't want to be just a superstar anymore - she wants to be a legend and she feels like she already is a legend. And legends are allowed to take risks - furthermore, they're supposed to take risks. This album is full of beautiful risks.
    Every
    Beyonce has been in the game for almost 15 years now and this album shows how maturer she has become and how much she has grown as an artist. She doesn't want to be just a superstar anymore - she wants to be a legend and she feels like she already is a legend. And legends are allowed to take risks - furthermore, they're supposed to take risks. This album is full of beautiful risks.
    Every song on the album is such a beautiful piece of art - starting with 1+1, an ode of love with strong vocals, I Care and I Miss You - you get the most emotional side of the love ballads. Best Thing I Never had is one of the highlights of the album with its catchy sound and unforgettable funny lyrics. Party is another funny song. Even though it's not what its title supposes it to be, the song is really nice with some 90s sound. After that we have some more ballads with mid-tempo sound - Rather Die Young and Start Over. Whereas the first impresses with it's melodic beautiful sound, Start Over is one of the strongest songs in vocal terms on the album. After Start Over, we get nothing but potential smashes and solid songs. Love On Top is one of the best here. After it Countdown and End of Time are the ones with the biggest potential to be smash hits and sit on the top of the charts for a while. Both are really melodic and have catchy sound. I Was Here is another vocally strong ballad, which is very appreciated by the fans because of its message. Run The World (Girls) closes the set with style.
    Even though the tracks are really risky because they are so different from everything on the radio, at the end of the day the quality is the thing that matters and an artist like Beyonce deserve all the support and the success, because to have the courage to not follow the trends, but inventing the new trends is what must be appreciated the best.
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  54. Jul 8, 2011
    10
    "4" is refreshing! It shows Beyoncé's continued growth as an artist. Musically, sonically, vocally, this is unlike anything that we have ever heard from her. I love that this album was unpredictable. Beyoncé has once again allowed us to see her at her very best. There is nothing playing on the airwaves that compares to the genius that is "4". All of"4" is refreshing! It shows Beyoncé's continued growth as an artist. Musically, sonically, vocally, this is unlike anything that we have ever heard from her. I love that this album was unpredictable. Beyoncé has once again allowed us to see her at her very best. There is nothing playing on the airwaves that compares to the genius that is "4". All of Beyoncé's albums are collectable pieces of art, whose value will continue to appreciate with time. This new album "4", is timeless and in my opinion her best work. An instant classic! Many may try, but there is only one Beyoncé! Expand
  55. Jul 8, 2011
    10
    4 is a classic album that you will be able to enjoy for years to come. Unlike other albums by major artists these days, Beyonce is not aiming to fit in with the current trends with this album and instead is in a lane of her own. The album has a strong old-school, feel-good vibe going on with alot of the songs. With true emotion and a powerful voice beautifully controlled conveyed on most4 is a classic album that you will be able to enjoy for years to come. Unlike other albums by major artists these days, Beyonce is not aiming to fit in with the current trends with this album and instead is in a lane of her own. The album has a strong old-school, feel-good vibe going on with alot of the songs. With true emotion and a powerful voice beautifully controlled conveyed on most songs... 4 is definately not a throw-away album. On first listen some Beyonce fans may be a little underwhelmed by the lack of up-tempos but in the long-run this will be an album they will grow to adore. There are some songs you'll be able to groove to with mom and dad in the car (e.g. Party and Love on Top)... Songs you can sing to your special someone (1+1, Rather Die Young, End of Time). Countdown and Run the World (Girls) are the two modern sounding up-tempos but are just as good and still fit in with the album. Even the deluxe edition songs are just as good. Essentially this is an album worth buying and can be enjoyed by people of all ages.... and if one day you wake up and find your Beyonce 4 missing, don't worry it's most likely in your moms car. LOL Expand
  56. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    A fantastic album. 4 shows Beyonce at her most adventurous and creative.Vocally, she soars and sounds majestic without being overshadow by production.Without a thought, this Beyonce`s best album to date.
  57. Jun 28, 2011
    9
    Where to begin ? 3 years after I Am... Sasha Fierce, Beyoncé releases her fourth album, 4, which has completely blown me away. I am so in love with it. From the deep and emotional ballads to the fun up tempo songs, everything is on point and showcases Beyoncé's vocal ability and sense of rhythm. Beyoncé's voice makes you feel like she's vulnerable butWhere to begin ? 3 years after I Am... Sasha Fierce, Beyoncé releases her fourth album, 4, which has completely blown me away. I am so in love with it. From the deep and emotional ballads to the fun up tempo songs, everything is on point and showcases Beyoncé's vocal ability and sense of rhythm. Beyoncé's voice makes you feel like she's vulnerable but yet strong and confident, and the whole album is a journey through a relationship which lead to the woman Beyoncé now is. I highly recommend this album to every music lover as I think it's so far the best album of 2011. Expand
  58. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. 4 is the best album of Beyonce's career. Love On Top is one the best songs of the year already. Vocally Beyonce has never been better. No doubt 4 is amazing and very well produced. score: 10 Expand
  59. Jul 11, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. If Beyoncé wanted to make an album different from the last, she made it! She could mix a lots of rythms as she wanted to. Even though people didn't hope a spectacular performance on charts, the quality of the album guaranteed the success. The best in the CD is End of Time, Love On Top and Run The World (Girls) Expand
  60. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Absolutely groundbreaking album. All songs are a hit, and Beyonce's voice better than ever. I liked every song in the album but my personal favorites Countdown, End of time, I was here and Start over.
  61. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    I love the depth and growth that Beyoncé displays on '4'. The emotion that she exudes vocally on the tracks 1+1, and I Care is phenomenal. I'm also loving the retro vibe of '4' -- Party and Love On Top are my absolute faves! Beyoncé brought the angst of love, the joy of love, plus the funk. :) Great album!
  62. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Actually ... Beyoncé DOES write her own songs and she did a great job. She spent more than a year on that album and we can see she had more liberty than for the others albums.
    4 is probably her best album, she came back to her R&B roots after her Pop album I am ... Sasha Fierce but not only, she mixed it with funk, soul, pop and even rock, some songs are very 80's and 90's.
    There are real instruments on almost every songs and her vocals are amazing.
    She took risks but she did what she really loved to do, she's really grown up.

    I can't understand why people who clearly didn't listen to it can post a review and give an opinion ...
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  63. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Ms. Knowles never ceases to surprise and amaze me, and 4 is chuck full of amazing and surprising gems that no other pop star could pull off. This collection is refreshingly breezy and mellow and showcases what true artistry is all about: Music, voice and soul. 4 has all three with gems such as Rather Die Young, a lyrical powerhouse that showcases Beyonce's voice wonderfully. TheMs. Knowles never ceases to surprise and amaze me, and 4 is chuck full of amazing and surprising gems that no other pop star could pull off. This collection is refreshingly breezy and mellow and showcases what true artistry is all about: Music, voice and soul. 4 has all three with gems such as Rather Die Young, a lyrical powerhouse that showcases Beyonce's voice wonderfully. The Babyface-penned breakup ballad Best Thing I Never Had shows Ms. Knowles retreating to Irreplaceable territory but it works. Also the Prince-Michael Jackson esque End of Time is truly a classic with a thumping percussion background and horns to match sure to rule the charts. Other noteworthy surprises are Countdown, sure to be banging in clubs across the world, Love On Top, an old-school inspired number that shows Ms. Knowles' voice reaching new heights (literally) and I Care, a powerful mid tempo song that showcases Knowles' voice with pure emotion and soul. All in all, this is a very good album considering its lead single. I personally like Run The World, it's a powerhouse that has inspired many great remixes but it is not indicative of the rest of the album. Songs of Interest:
    End of Time
    I Care
    1+1
    Rather Die Young
    Countdown
    I Was Here
    Love on Top
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  64. Jul 2, 2011
    9
    Fans of B'Day and Sasha Fierce maybe a little crestfallen with this ballad heavy album (if so, look for Run the World (Girls), Countdown, End of Time, and Schoolin' Life) but it shines above most other mainstream albums from this year, and I feel it seems like a perfect sequel to I Am... The mid-tempos show a small glimpse of her hip-hop and dance sound that she boasted in her secondFans of B'Day and Sasha Fierce maybe a little crestfallen with this ballad heavy album (if so, look for Run the World (Girls), Countdown, End of Time, and Schoolin' Life) but it shines above most other mainstream albums from this year, and I feel it seems like a perfect sequel to I Am... The mid-tempos show a small glimpse of her hip-hop and dance sound that she boasted in her second studio album and the signature R&B/Soul ballads are all on par, if not beyond, songs such as "Halo" and "If I Were A Boy". Whether it is a grooving, uplifting dance track or a beautiful soul masterpiece, this album, whether partially or in its entirety, is sure to appeal to most all of old and new Beyoncé fans. Expand
  65. Jul 6, 2011
    10
    Absolutely amazing. Beyonce has shown growth vocally and artistically with this album. Each song is different sound and is also cohesive. I am a satisfied with the producing, writing and direction she went with this era. Good Job King.
  66. Jul 6, 2011
    10
    A dynamic artist serving her most mature and by far diverse album thus far, Beyonce has done it again. In continuing her reign as global icon, '4' introduces a side of Beyonce the world has yet to see. There's no stopping her. This album is definitely one to remember.
  67. Jul 6, 2011
    10
    Very entertaining album. So much growth. Any one that thinks otherwise is probably into the RIhanna. Lady Gaga pop rubbish that 10yrs from now, they will be thinking what was i thinking listening to a Gaga or Rihanna music. If you want great lyrical content "4" is the one for you.
  68. Jul 7, 2011
    10
    This is by far my favorite Beyonce album. I enjoyed every song. I was expecting an album full of the dance songs that all pop artists seem to be doing these days.
    Instead got a cohesive album with some of the best songs I've heard all year.
  69. HFK
    Jul 13, 2011
    10
    You can hear that Beyoncé didn't made this album for the money. She experiments with different genres and you can hear those musical influences. This is without a doubt my favourite Beyoncé album. Beyoncé won six Grammy's with her previous album I Am... Sasha Fierce so i predict that she's gonna win twice as much as next year. Probably the best albumYou can hear that Beyoncé didn't made this album for the money. She experiments with different genres and you can hear those musical influences. This is without a doubt my favourite Beyoncé album. Beyoncé won six Grammy's with her previous album I Am... Sasha Fierce so i predict that she's gonna win twice as much as next year. Probably the best album of 2011. Lady GaGa, i bet it sucks to be you right now! Expand
  70. Aug 19, 2011
    10
    Beyonce's best album to date. She shows she is in a league of her own. Her vocals have never been better. On songs like 'I Was Here,' 'I Care,' 'I Miss You,' she sings with so much conviction and passion. Favorites include Countdown, End of Time & Best Thing I Never Had. Good job Bey.
  71. Jun 28, 2011
    8
    At first, I was scared that Bee will release her 4th studio effort much too soon after a triumphant "I Am... Sasha Fierce". But "4" comes just in time. With too much AutoTune on the charts these days (months?), Beyonce's album delivers live instruments on a majority of tracks. Various speculations that she'll be trying to compete with Lady Gaga and Britney Spears were wrong. "4" is filledAt first, I was scared that Bee will release her 4th studio effort much too soon after a triumphant "I Am... Sasha Fierce". But "4" comes just in time. With too much AutoTune on the charts these days (months?), Beyonce's album delivers live instruments on a majority of tracks. Various speculations that she'll be trying to compete with Lady Gaga and Britney Spears were wrong. "4" is filled with emotional ballads and mid-tempo songs. Even the much talked about "Party" is surprisingly slow. Whoever thought that the rest of the album is going to sound like the shockingly under-performing "Run the world (Girls)" (with its accompanying video, which is her career-best) made a mistake. Album could easily become a commercial flop, with no song on the album that screams "single!", but in the following years it will most certainly define itself as the singer's most personal and emotional set. Expand
  72. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Beyonce - No Sound Defines Her. 4 is a timeless CLASSIC.

    She recently said "no one can define her" and boy did she mean it. With '4' we see a new side of Beyonce that we rarely see. A side that is vulnerable, yet liberating and powerful at the same time. '4' is not just a record, but rather a journey. It describes what we go through everyday; the ups and downs of relationships and our
    Beyonce - No Sound Defines Her. 4 is a timeless CLASSIC.

    She recently said "no one can define her" and boy did she mean it. With '4' we see a new side of Beyonce that we rarely see. A side that is vulnerable, yet liberating and powerful at the same time. '4' is not just a record, but rather a journey. It describes what we go through everyday; the ups and downs of relationships and our desire to be remembered in some way and make our "mark" as she describes in the Diane Warren penned power ballad "I Was Here" 4 takes us on a journey of good music. One where Beyonce does not put herself in a box, but has shown that she's willing to take the risk of doing something different than what we hear right now. Overall her most cohesive work yet, and of course her best work, thus far. CLASSIC! Favorite tracks include: Countdown, Best Thing I Never Had, End of Time, I Miss You, 1+1, Start Over, Love on Top, I Was Here, Rather Die Young, Party, I Care, and Run the World (Girls)... Damn I think I listed the whole album, it's just that good. Great job Queen B, oops I mean KING B.
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  73. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    I love this album so much, very strong, emotional and creative album!! i think its her biggest album yet, deluxe tracks so fits perfectly!! Congratulations QueenBee!! Who run this Mutha?!!
  74. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    After winning 16 grammys, Beyoncé has solidified her star status. Her mark has been made in pop history.
    With that freedom in mind she took an 18 months hiatus to travel the world and explore new sounds. What she came back with is a cohesive timeless masterpiece. By far the best album in her disocgraphy. This album combines the best of the last 3 albums and the best of
    After winning 16 grammys, Beyoncé has solidified her star status. Her mark has been made in pop history.
    With that freedom in mind she took an 18 months hiatus to travel the world and explore new sounds. What she came back with is a cohesive timeless masterpiece. By far the best album in her disocgraphy. This album combines the best of the last 3 albums and the best of musical inspiration (Michael Jackson, Prince, EWF etc.). On this album Beyoncé throwbacks to the sound of past decades, but without the music sounding dated. In a time where electro pop and autotune are dominating the charts "4"comes off as rather refreshing. From the use of real instruments to the use of her larger than life vocals. Where it may have felt like she has held back vocally on previous albums, on "4" she gives it her all. Get the full experience.
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  75. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    OMG this album is so amazing, I can't even find the right words to describe it!!!! MUSIC people, music!!! Best songs: "I Care", "Schoolin' Life", "End Of Time", "Countdown", "Best Thing I Never Had" and "I Miss You"
  76. Jul 3, 2011
    7
    I'm a guy and i liked this album. I'm straight also. Countdown is my favorite song on the album. that song is great. there are other songs i liked but that one song stood out the most. i liked the album it was weird. 7 out of 10 it wasn't horrible.
  77. Jun 28, 2011
    8
    Mesmerising vocals and powerful deliveries; Seductive melodies and breath-taking tones; Enchanting refrains and fist-throwing anthems all on one album? It could only mean one thing: Beyonce is back!

    Despite the lead single, girl-power chant "Run The World (Girls)" not quite setting the charts alight, what to expect from Beyonce's fourth solo effort? Lyrically rich, the set contains some
    Mesmerising vocals and powerful deliveries; Seductive melodies and breath-taking tones; Enchanting refrains and fist-throwing anthems all on one album? It could only mean one thing: Beyonce is back!

    Despite the lead single, girl-power chant "Run The World (Girls)" not quite setting the charts alight, what to expect from Beyonce's fourth solo effort? Lyrically rich, the set contains some of her best work, as evident on the slower songs: "1+1" - a heartfelt (Tina Turner-style) love-song which oozes class; "I Miss You" - a neo-soul sci-fi torch song with hypnotizing vocals; and "Start Over" - a beautiful yet desperate 'maybe it's over' plea with incredibly endearing elements.

    "I Care" is the most impressive of these, with it's futuristic almost Trip-Hop feel; on which she portrays her strong point - conveying real human emotions as she sings: 'Ever since you knew your power, you make me cry / And now everytime my love goes sour, you won't sympathise'.

    However a couple of the up-tempos leave more to be desired for. "Countdown" (too loud and bouncy); and "Love On Top" (a decent happy love song that seems to go on a bit too long) - don't seem to match up to the hit-maker's past credentials as a front-runner in the field.

    Current single "Best Thing I Never Had" is too reminiscent of previous radio hits ala "Irreplaceable" - making it an un-exciting follow-up. "Rather Die Young" is an interesting experiment on which she tackles the subject of death.

    All is not lost however, as "End Of Time" - packed with a frantic bass line, tribal beats and an undeniably addictive melody, has easily the biggest hit potential on the album. Along with "Party" - a splendid groovy retro jam with guest vocals from Kanye West and Andre 3000, adds colour to the affair.

    The eerie cogitative ballad "I Was Here" is another delight. There is something magical about Beyonce's voice, and on this record it really sets her apart from all other divas: both past and present.

    In a world where Pop trends seem to change every few months, Bey takes another step in the right direction, by being herself. And although one just wishes the album was slightly more cohesive (with over 70 songs recorded for the project it's no wonder the focus was slightly blurred) - Beyonce has crafted her most accomplished work to date. And although not quite a masterpiece, 4 is still the best Pop-R&B album you will hear this year.
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  78. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    The quintessential 90's album with influences ranging from the soul of the 70's, to World music, and even Fusion. All uniquely Beyonce. Standout tracks: Rather Die Young, End of Time, Lay Up Under Me, and Party featuring Andre 3000.
  79. Jun 28, 2011
    10
    Amazing! Beyonce brought everything to the table with 4. She used music from every Genre to make it her own. Proud of you #fam. #1 in 23 Countries. You go girl!
  80. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Beyonce has truly reached a new level, musically. When you compare her vocals on this album with some of her previous efforts, it becomes obvious that 4 showcases her voice more than it does hot danceable beats. Are the songs revolutionary and groundbreaking tracks that feature sounds that have never been heard before? No. However, they don't need to be. They are all that they have to be;Beyonce has truly reached a new level, musically. When you compare her vocals on this album with some of her previous efforts, it becomes obvious that 4 showcases her voice more than it does hot danceable beats. Are the songs revolutionary and groundbreaking tracks that feature sounds that have never been heard before? No. However, they don't need to be. They are all that they have to be; excellent songs that feature great instrumentation and serve as a platform for her voice to roam powerful and free. I haven't been a huge fan of Beyonce's albums as a whole. Of certain songs, yes, but not entire albums. Until now. Expand
  81. Jul 1, 2011
    10
    Easily Beyonce's best album to date. She has clearly challenged herself to experiment with different genres and styles of music. This album is much more electic and layered than all the others. No song, no end the most uptempos are simple. Each one is layered with depth. The vocals and ranges displayed are much more raw and intense than any other record she has had. Clearly this woman isEasily Beyonce's best album to date. She has clearly challenged herself to experiment with different genres and styles of music. This album is much more electic and layered than all the others. No song, no end the most uptempos are simple. Each one is layered with depth. The vocals and ranges displayed are much more raw and intense than any other record she has had. Clearly this woman is in another place in her life and career and has nothing to prove to anyone and is displaying her talent to its best level. The best album of her career thus far. #CPD @C_P_Djordje Expand
  82. Jul 5, 2011
    9
    I feel that this album is one of the most risky of the year and definitely of Beyoncé's career. She has totally moved away from mainstream trends to bring something that is fresher, more pure, and more exciting than most pop music out now. The album is her most coherent and finds the singer struggling with problems that go deeper than those of the dance floor. The part ofI feel that this album is one of the most risky of the year and definitely of Beyoncé's career. She has totally moved away from mainstream trends to bring something that is fresher, more pure, and more exciting than most pop music out now. The album is her most coherent and finds the singer struggling with problems that go deeper than those of the dance floor. The part of the CD is her singing by far, the showcasing of her remarkable talent that sets her apart from most "singers." Still I wish there were more up-tempos on the album, but I am more than happy with the emotion I am given in the production, songwriting, and her beautiful voice. Expand
  83. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    Anyone who gives this EPIC masterpiece any less than a 6 is either Biased, a Hater or BOTH!! This album is Epic from start to finish. Its Her best album yet, I consider it her career album, Its like bits & pieces from all her past albums all the way back to DC & all her influences wrapped into one, its R&b, Adult contept, Rock, Pop, Hip hop, Soul yet it still sounds modern & fresh & veryAnyone who gives this EPIC masterpiece any less than a 6 is either Biased, a Hater or BOTH!! This album is Epic from start to finish. Its Her best album yet, I consider it her career album, Its like bits & pieces from all her past albums all the way back to DC & all her influences wrapped into one, its R&b, Adult contept, Rock, Pop, Hip hop, Soul yet it still sounds modern & fresh & very sonically cohesive & diffrent. & the vocals are amazing this era. its one of those rare albums were every song is good, you can listwen without skipping tracks, no filler, this alone puts it above the rest. Favs: Miss You, I was here, i care, Party, countdown, dance 4u, Start over, End of time, & love on top. Expand
  84. Nov 19, 2011
    10
    All about that voice! Beyonce shows off her voice on this record. No need for effects or auto-tune, just her pure and real voice! A very rare thing in mainstream pop music today. '4' is a timeless pop record that will stand the test of time.
  85. Jul 8, 2011
    10
    If you don't like this album, you should really question your taste in music. I love it because it has a different sound. Unlike most of her musical peers, she didn't go the techno-pop route which made me love this album even more. You can tell all of her songs came from the heart. The only thing that I have to say is that I don't think "Run The World (Girls)" fits into the album AT ALL.If you don't like this album, you should really question your taste in music. I love it because it has a different sound. Unlike most of her musical peers, she didn't go the techno-pop route which made me love this album even more. You can tell all of her songs came from the heart. The only thing that I have to say is that I don't think "Run The World (Girls)" fits into the album AT ALL. Other than that, the album is flawless. Expand
  86. Jun 30, 2011
    7
    Beyonce has taken a great artistic leap forward with "4," but it's only partially paid off. Every line is infused with so much emotion that it becomes draining to listen to in one sitting. If you're hesitant about buying this album, don't judge it off of the singles. I feel that they are the worst tracks on the album. Do yourself a favor and download "1+1" and "Love On Top" if you don'tBeyonce has taken a great artistic leap forward with "4," but it's only partially paid off. Every line is infused with so much emotion that it becomes draining to listen to in one sitting. If you're hesitant about buying this album, don't judge it off of the singles. I feel that they are the worst tracks on the album. Do yourself a favor and download "1+1" and "Love On Top" if you don't plan on buying the entire thing. Expand
  87. Mar 24, 2013
    10
    Bow Down It' The Queen!
    Beyonce's Best Album To Date Cant Get Any Better Than This!
  88. Jun 27, 2012
    10
    4 is Beyonce's Best album to date! Its sad that its her lowest selling one because this album is so beautiful. Should have won Best R&B album at the Grammys (or at least a nom smh) This album will stay in my heart forever, it has so much diversity that it will be a classic on its own.
  89. Nov 21, 2011
    10
    Amazing album from start to finish. The production, lyrics and vocals are superior to any pop album released in the longest while. Beyonce has outdone herself with '4'
  90. Nov 22, 2011
    10
    WOW... Can Beyonce be any better? She's phenomenal. The album is perfect. Her vocals and delivery have never been better. She has nothing left to prove in the music business, she's a LEGEND.
  91. Nov 24, 2011
    8
    After a pack full of random styles that was I Am... Sasha Fierce, Beyoncé comes with her most touching, brave and bold record. 4, an album made by their midtempos, is her strongest yet.
  92. Dec 2, 2011
    10
    Great album. One of the best of the year or even last decade. This isn't about radio hits, it's about REAL music. Beyonce shows off her voice in this one and she can SANG!
  93. Dec 3, 2011
    8
    This is one of Beyonce's most cohesive works yet. The album is full of R and B Nostalgia. Beyonce has never been more confident vocally and more poignant with emotion. The albums opener 1 + 1 is a true artistic choice that is very admirable. Listening to four sounds like the best elements of R and B from the last 40 years but with a modern twist. Only Beyonce could do this. TheThis is one of Beyonce's most cohesive works yet. The album is full of R and B Nostalgia. Beyonce has never been more confident vocally and more poignant with emotion. The albums opener 1 + 1 is a true artistic choice that is very admirable. Listening to four sounds like the best elements of R and B from the last 40 years but with a modern twist. Only Beyonce could do this. The problem with this album is how it fits into the current market. But an album like this is not for the times, its for the history books. Expand
  94. May 4, 2015
    10
    ore. You can tell all of her songs came from the heart. The only thing that I have to say is that I don't think "Run The World (Girls)" fits into the album AT ALL. Other than that, the album is flawle
  95. Apr 1, 2012
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. There is only ONE problem with 4, and it is not Beyoncé's fault, but the listener's. To enjoy this album, you have to listen from the beginning to the end, having in mind that this is Beyoncé's legacy. These are the songs she will still sing 20 years from now. The songs are timeless, meaningful. When I listen to 4, I hear everything a good pop album should be. It feels like a twelve stories building you are visiting, each song taking you higher and deeper into the icon's heart. And when you're done listening to I Was Here, you just feel so empty, that I would have hated this masterpiece if the upbeat Run The World was absent. Even though I hate this song, I think it's a very important part of 4; it allows us to really feel what this whole album is about without suffering from the emptiness and meaninglessness (?) of our lives. This is how I feel about Beyoncé's 4. I feel that she sings to us as an icon, not as a "friend" (which is the case most of the time in other mediocre pop albums) and this is how she does it. She is writing her legacy. Expand
  96. Jan 8, 2012
    8
    Intimate, strong. Flirting with different types of styles, from R&B to brazilian beat, Beyonce's fourth album, named "4" is her very best until now. Her power ballads are sublime, her outrageous voice suits just with the experimental rhythms in some of the songs. The highlight is "Love On Top", a motown based song, remembering the best of Marvin Gaye or James Brown. It is a step ahead inIntimate, strong. Flirting with different types of styles, from R&B to brazilian beat, Beyonce's fourth album, named "4" is her very best until now. Her power ballads are sublime, her outrageous voice suits just with the experimental rhythms in some of the songs. The highlight is "Love On Top", a motown based song, remembering the best of Marvin Gaye or James Brown. It is a step ahead in Knowles's career, and it brought the R&B to a higher level. Expand
  97. Nov 19, 2012
    9
    Beyonce's masterpiece. There's not much else to say... She really brought the vocals especially to this album. Some of the ballads are really amazing to listen to
  98. Jul 15, 2012
    10
    This album is a favorite ! Beyonce has amazing vocals, beats, videos, and choreograpy that sets her work apart from anyone else! Beyonce is the modern Janet Jackson and she is dominating for good reason. If you do not like/love this album then you dont know how to identify good music. She goes from sexy to rage to fun in a heartbeat, its so diverse! Buy this album seriously if you haventThis album is a favorite ! Beyonce has amazing vocals, beats, videos, and choreograpy that sets her work apart from anyone else! Beyonce is the modern Janet Jackson and she is dominating for good reason. If you do not like/love this album then you dont know how to identify good music. She goes from sexy to rage to fun in a heartbeat, its so diverse! Buy this album seriously if you havent already! No artist is touching this woman! Expand
  99. Nov 24, 2013
    10
    Beyoncé's most surprising album to date. I am not a fan of Beyoncé, but this album sure made me look twice at her featuring good vocals, rhythm and lyrics. Surprisingly good. You can't even tell it's a Beyoncé album, every song's got a story and distinction.
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. Uncut
    Aug 18, 2011
    80
    The lyrics are occasionally hackneyed, but overall 4 is a very strong record indeed. [Sep 2011, p.79]
  2. Q Magazine
    Aug 16, 2011
    60
    At Glastonbury she dazzled; here she plays it safe. [Sept. 2011, p. 105]
  3. Aug 2, 2011
    70
    While I suspect 4 was made in large part to sound more natural and real, it doesn't succeed entirely. The album is a refreshingly understated change from the constantly banging and bumping sound of modern R&B, but it doesn't really bring us closer to the Queen B.