Angles - The Strokes
Metascore
71

Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. Mar 16, 2011
    90
    Disjointed, hyperactive, experimental, whatever. Angles is the album to beat this year.
  2. Mar 16, 2011
    90
    Prepare to be smitten all over again, as the NYC outfit release a brilliant fourth album.
  3. Mar 22, 2011
    88
    Best of all, Angles captures that now-all-too-rare excitement of musicians playing off of one another.
  4. Angles is the best Strokes album since their 2001 debut, and they still sound just as fresh and youthful as they did when they released that record.
  5. Mar 22, 2011
    83
    Once miscast as game-changing saviors of the underground, The Strokes have proven once again with Angles that they are actually one of the era's top mainstream pop-rock acts, uniquely gifted at crafting catchy, radio-ready rock songs at a time when such a thing seems like a quaint remnant of a distant past.
  6. May 2, 2011
    80
    Angles fits 10 songs into a brisk 34 minutes and doesn't waste time gunning for gravitas. [Apr 2011, p.92]
  7. Mar 29, 2011
    80
    Perhaps they should have been more democratic in the past, because this is a terrific record that plays to The Strokes; Strengths and also adds fresh colour to their palette. [Apr 2011, p.79]
  8. Mar 24, 2011
    80
    Angles doesn't feel like an over-indulgent record, nor one that speaks of a dearth of ideas.
  9. Mar 22, 2011
    80
    There aren't many instantly identifiable bands that can mess with the familiar recipe while somehow also honoring it, but that's precisely what the Strokes have achieved on Angles, an album as warm as it is cool.
  10. 80
    Angles, The Strokes' long awaited fourth LP, stands as the group's most eclectic album to date.
  11. Mar 18, 2011
    80
    While Angles lacks a definite image, it is the band's best purely musical statement, and as the band members explore their 30s, perhaps it is time for them to retire their young, aggressive punk image and become successes in the first sense of the word -- strictly musical.
  12. Mar 16, 2011
    80
    Indecision and infighting have rarely sounded this solid and inspired.
  13. Mar 16, 2011
    80
    Angles ends up being one of the group's more compelling efforts, rather than the casualty of experimentation it could have been.
  14. Mar 16, 2011
    80
    On Angles, the Strokes' trick isn't fooling us into thinking these tunes fell to Stanton Street fully formed (though that occasionally happens, as with the goofy fake-reggae lark "Machu Picchu"). It's that a group of reunited rock stars somehow come on like wide-eyed kids.
  15. Mar 16, 2011
    80
    While The Strokes have outgrown any notions of being rock's saviours, in doing so they could just have delivered what might be their best album since Is This It. It's certainly their most diverse.
  16. Mar 16, 2011
    80
    With its sudden-U-turn songwriting and curt execution, Angles is the best album that Casablancas, guitarists Nick Valensi and Albert Hammond Jr., bassist Nikolai Fraiture and drummer Fabrizio Moretti have made since 2001's Is This It, the cannonball that inaugurated the modern-garage era.
  17. Mar 25, 2011
    78
    A band exploring a new sound is great, but that's what demos and the studio are for. Some of what The Strokes seem to be aiming for with Angles unfortunately isn't realized.
  18. Mar 28, 2011
    77
    Angles manages litheness; First Impressions was all sludge. And despite the rumored ills surrounding the recording process, the resulting album paints the band as re-energized and optimistic, playful in a way their last record so detrimentally wasn't.
  19. The good news is that The Strokes have delivered a good album. The bad news is that for all its throwback production, it doesn't really sound much like The Strokes, and many of their longtime fans are probably going to be disappointed in an album that doesn't retreat to the sound of the band's glory days with its tail between its legs.
  20. Mar 23, 2011
    73
    It took awhile, but the Strokes have ultimately rewarded their fans' enduring patience.
  21. 70
    Having been away from being a working band for a half decade, the Strokes have returned with a more polished take on their classic sound. Different: yes. Disaster: absolutely not!
  22. Mar 22, 2011
    70
    Ultimately, Angles' best moments are reassuring rather than exciting, offering proof that the Strokes can still make an album together, and hope that it'll come more naturally to them next time.
  23. 70
    Angles isn't perfect, but if it marks a new phase of creativity and togetherness for the group, then it could be more of a success than even Is This It.
  24. 67
    Angles reveals a newfound earnestness: For the first time, it actually feels like the guys are trying.
  25. Mar 16, 2011
    63
    If nothing else, Angles makes it impossible to predict where the Strokes will go next.
  26. May 10, 2011
    60
    The result is mixed and at times strained, but a spark still lies within.
  27. 60
    When all is said and done, Angles could make for an exciting introduction to a new chapter for The Strokes, or it could be a disappointing swan song.
  28. Apr 22, 2011
    60
    Angles homespun demeanour is key to its appeal. There are flaws. [Apr 2011, p.95]
  29. Apr 18, 2011
    60
    They're maturing gracelessly, still in love with the fool's gold myth of rock and roll, which is precisely why Angles succeeds as a record.
  30. Mar 22, 2011
    60
    Is this it? Don't feel ashamed if that's your initial reaction to the Strokes' new album, the natty New York rockers' first in five years. Stick with it, and you'll be rewarded with a record that's completely oblivious to expectations and past glories.
  31. Mar 22, 2011
    60
    The Strokes have managed to culture a great sense of the schizophrenic on Angles, mapping polar tones in tandem to produce a record that feels both confused and entirely deliberate.
  32. Mar 21, 2011
    60
    If the Strokes keep their word that better things are yet to come, Angles could be seen in a different light in due time, the album where they worked through their late-in-coming growing pains and found themselves at a fork in the road, not the end of it.
  33. Mar 21, 2011
    60
    Angles is a document of the Strokes operating more as a task force than a real band; even though the album's allegedly fractured recording sessions resulted in the first Strokes LP to feature writing credits from every member of the band, this is more of a show of individuals tinkering with each track rather than any true cooperative effort.
  34. 60
    Comeback albums, it seems, are not just for other bands to do.
  35. Mar 16, 2011
    60
    Angles ends in a horribly frustrating manner, with none of the assurance of "Take it or Leave It" or "Red Light." No, Angles, even in ending with its strongest song, dies the way it lived: in sheer ambiguity.
  36. Mar 21, 2011
    59
    Though this band was routinely slapped with claims of 1970s plagiarism upon their arrival, it's unlikely that many people have ever mistaken a Strokes song for one by Lou Reed or Television. So it's ironic that their mimicry can be uncanny on Angles.
  37. Mar 28, 2011
    45
    Most of Angles finds The Strokes trying as hard as possible not to sound like The Strokes. This is done, in part, by recycling the least palatable parts of their last LP, and interpolating them with weird, near-atonal choruses.
  38. Coming from a band who blatantly don't want to be a band any more, Angles is inevitably disjointed. But it's not disastrous.
  39. Mar 21, 2011
    40
    These songs don't sound anxious, or troubled, just lacklustre.
  40. Mar 17, 2011
    40
    Plenty of great records have been made in an atmosphere of terrible acrimony. But Angles just sounds like an album made by people who really didn't want to make an album.
  41. Mar 22, 2011
    30
    The band's tight, and every song contains at least a few interesting musical ideas, but the album as a whole comes across less like a creative mess and more like a stoned-battle-of-the-bands gone wrong.
User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 168 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 48
  2. Negative: 4 out of 48
  1. Mar 23, 2011
    10
    I was disappointed with this album when I first listened to it. Now it's grown on me with a vengeance. I absolutely love it. Taken for a FoolI was disappointed with this album when I first listened to it. Now it's grown on me with a vengeance. I absolutely love it. Taken for a Fool is easily one of the best songs, with it's fantastic chorus. Games, the most unnerving departure from The Strokes' norm, is now one of my favourite songs. Life is Simple in the Moonlight has a unique atmosphere of distant sincerity and regret. Not to mention Under Cover of Darkness, easily the best individual Strokes song since the Is This It era. Full Review »
  2. Oct 3, 2011
    7
    Angles has grown on me, going from a B- to a straight A. It was such a great decision to change their style a little bit after the somewhatAngles has grown on me, going from a B- to a straight A. It was such a great decision to change their style a little bit after the somewhat disappointing First Impressions of Earth. Overall, Angles comes together beautifully and is one of the most underrated and unfairly overlooked albums of the past few years Full Review »
  3. Jun 24, 2012
    5
    Under Cover of Darkness, Taken for a Fool and Gratisfaction are the only great songs in Angles, the rest is complete and utter **** And evenUnder Cover of Darkness, Taken for a Fool and Gratisfaction are the only great songs in Angles, the rest is complete and utter **** And even these three songs could have been a lot better, I'd say the recording style had a lot to do with it, the songs feel disconnected and at times nonsensical because of it.

    Truly a huge disappointment, I honestly thought this would be their comeback, guess I was wrong. Gratisfaction and Taken for a Fool seem like the only fresh tunes while still retaining some of that old Strokes feel to them.
    Full Review »