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Actor Image
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 27 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 96 Ratings

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  • Summary: Annie Clark's second album was produced with John Congleton.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. With engaging songwriting, creative instrumentation and melodically special music, not only is Actor everything we imagined it would be but Clark has redefined the definition of pop music.
  2. Her voice seems small and fragile, but it's her most effective instrument, and it affixes a tight lynchpin to the album's broadly creative themes, leaving it glistening with ghostly elegance.
  3. Like an unsettling dream, Actor will stay with you for quite a while, but it isn’t listeners or critics that will be discomfited by the eccentric sophistication here.
  4. For all the darkness of Actor's concerns, however, it remains an exceptionally pleasurable album to listen to.
  5. You won't glean much more about those people and places than you knew going in, but Clark's strange angles and fanciful settings pack a visceral punch.
  6. Here, Clark’s lyrics are less overtly clever than on her debut, and they’re more deeply buried in layers of her spastic instrumentation. Nonetheless, they suggest a subtle, abstract intelligence.
  7. Occasionally it drifts a little too aimlessly, as if recorded under the dulling influence of Prozac, but when she gets it right, she can be entirely, weirdly riveting. [Jun 2009, p.131]

See all 27 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 24
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 24
  3. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. JeremyF
    May 5, 2009
    10
    Marry Me is a bit better in my opinion, but Actor proves to be a nearly pitch-perfect follow up. From the pulsating beat of "Actor Out of Marry Me is a bit better in my opinion, but Actor proves to be a nearly pitch-perfect follow up. From the pulsating beat of "Actor Out of Work," to the swirling instrumentals of "The Party," to the emotional crack in her voice when she says "Tomorrow's some sort of stranger who I'm not supposed to see" in the brilliant "The Neighbors." I think "the Sequel should have been kept off, as "Just the Same but Brand New" is actually a perfect and slightly inconclusive ending. But even so, a terrific work. Expand
  2. May 15, 2012
    10
    The perfect album. I barely discovered this album 2 weeks ago. I previously listened to Strange Mercy, which is good and much different fromThe perfect album. I barely discovered this album 2 weeks ago. I previously listened to Strange Mercy, which is good and much different from this. Actor is by far Annie's best album. She succeeds in every way possible and more! The tracks that really captured my heart in this album were Save Me From What I Want, Black Rainbow, Actor Out Of Work, Marrow, Laughing With A Mouth Of Blood, and two of my now, all time favorite songs ever, The Party, which will take you to places you've never been before, and Just The Same, But Brand New which is incredibly written lyrically and instrumentally. This album gets a PERFECT 10 out of 10 in my book . Expand
  3. LaurenceB
    May 8, 2009
    10
    Incredible album - the stage is set for St. Vincent to storm the top 5's of innumerable end-of-year lists.
  4. Nov 3, 2010
    10
    It is incredible that this album can be better than her first but it is. St. Vincent managed to make an even better album this time around andIt is incredible that this album can be better than her first but it is. St. Vincent managed to make an even better album this time around and it's great I love almost every song and the best songs in this album are probably among the best of 2009. Expand
  5. Aug 24, 2014
    10
    What happens here is very unusual: a second album that's even way better than its predecessor. Excellent forms and structures color wonderfulWhat happens here is very unusual: a second album that's even way better than its predecessor. Excellent forms and structures color wonderful songs that tend to start as if they were in a magic fairy tale and end as if they were burning out in hell. To say it clearer, this album explodes irony; explodes artistry; explodes anxious talent. Expand
  6. BlueMeanie
    Oct 4, 2009
    9
    Ignore the cover. It's studiously naive like a Talking Heads photo. Like them, this is revolutionized pop as well. Way better than what Ignore the cover. It's studiously naive like a Talking Heads photo. Like them, this is revolutionized pop as well. Way better than what I expected. Expand
  7. EvanS
    May 8, 2009
    7
    On first listen I was mesmerized - the work is inspired with beautiful layers of familiar sounding lead-ins (the first track does a fun tease On first listen I was mesmerized - the work is inspired with beautiful layers of familiar sounding lead-ins (the first track does a fun tease of "Bye Bye Blackbird" and then takes you to an entirely different spot. This album leaked air when I read an interview with Annie Clark who described her fascination with combining a Disney soundtrack with "knarley" guitar work. It kinda spoiled the discovery for me and the music should speak for itself. Still, this album is captivating and Annie Clark is an incredible talent who is just beginning to lift off. Expand

See all 24 User Reviews