• Record Label: Sub Pop
  • Release Date: Feb 14, 2012
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
Buy On
  1. Mar 5, 2012
    60
    Instead of a coherent collection of songs, Animal Joy feels like a series of very clever blueprints that, while admirable in form, are often (despite that title), rather bloodless.
  2. Feb 24, 2012
    60
    It's aggressive, impressive, but never makes an emotional connection.
  3. Q Magazine
    Feb 22, 2012
    60
    Touring with Coldplay have clearly done little to dim the scale of Meiburg's ambitions. [Mar 2012, p.112]
  4. 60
    It's not as unified as previous records, but with fewer meanders towards the mainstream and more of the electronic adventures of last year's freebie 'Shearwater Is Enron', Animal Joy may herald a bold new incarnation.
  5. Feb 14, 2012
    60
    Animal Joy falters where it mistakes crude simplicity for reinvention.
  6. Feb 10, 2012
    60
    A peculiar unwillingness to climax is something that many Shearwater records have suffered with over the years, and Animal Joy is unfortunately no exception.
User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 15 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 15
  2. Negative: 1 out of 15
  1. Feb 18, 2012
    9
    Two things have frequently been written about this album: it's more accessible than previous work and it probably represents a transition forTwo things have frequently been written about this album: it's more accessible than previous work and it probably represents a transition for this band. On the first, yes, it is most certainly more accessible, but I cannot bring myself to say this is a bad thing. Shearwater combines their ability for ethereal chords and vocals with the, yes, animal pulse of rock and electronic beats. It's a beautiful fusion that seems perfect for the album's title. And one can only hope this represents a transition. I absolutely loved their recently competed trilogy, but most high quality bands fail when they try to extend a single idea or sound too long. And for a possibly transitional album, "Animal Joy" is surprisingly cohesive and complete. Full Review »
  2. Apr 26, 2012
    8
    Already the first track on the album, title "Animal Life" is enough just to get a picture of the entire release. CD is in fact a combinationAlready the first track on the album, title "Animal Life" is enough just to get a picture of the entire release. CD is in fact a combination of rock with different varieties of folk. The voice of Jonathan Meiburg has something compelling, the artist is able to fit perfectly in both experimental, indie rock compositions like "Breaking The Yearlings" and that more subdued "Dread Sovereign" or "You As You Were" (great xylophone parts ), where you can hear perfectly the depth of his vocals bringing to mind Editors. Very righteous piece of art - worth listening to. Full Review »
  3. Feb 26, 2012
    9
    While the instrument roster is reduced, the tempos are generally faster, and the subject matter is about the inner life instead of the worldWhile the instrument roster is reduced, the tempos are generally faster, and the subject matter is about the inner life instead of the world at large, this is still very much a Shearwater record. You As You Were and Insolence are the two very different highlights of the record, but to my ears, there's not a bad track to be found.

    If you liked their previous work, odds are good you will like this. If you didn't, it's different enough to be worth a try.
    Full Review »