Anxiety - Autre Ne Veut
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Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 42 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second full-length release from Arthur Ashin was influenced by the music of such artists as Laurie Anderson, David Byrne, Annie Lennox, Katy Perry, Lee "Scratch" Perry, and Rihanna.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Mar 1, 2013
    The lack of vanity, the frank way it strives for accessibility only serves to further magnify the greatness of Anxiety. It does the most ideal thing art can do: it tries to make sense of life itself, without pretense or guile.
  2. Mar 5, 2013
    Throughout Anxiety, tracks fail to resolve--“Counting,” “Promises,” “Gonna Die”--and initially I thought it was a songwriting flaw, coming on so fantastically strong there was nowhere left to go. But .... On multiple listens none of this plays accidental--songs run aground as a means of setting the next episode in motion.
  3. Mar 4, 2013
    With all its messy emotions, unfiltered memories and contradicting revelations, Anxiety shows that it’s not only possible to write a self-conscious record without the protective shield of anonymity, it can be just as thrilling.
  4. 70
    Although this is at times a frustratingly inconsistent demonstration of his talents, Autre Ne Veut is still one of the more accomplished acts to have emerged from the bedroom R’n'B/future pop/whatever niche.
  5. Mar 5, 2013
    This is an album of climaxes and cathartic streams of consciousness, but an album listenable from start to finish.
  6. Mar 1, 2013
    Anxiety's blend of heaviness and gloss is unexpectedly affecting. [Apr 2013, p.67]
  7. Feb 28, 2013
    Ashin, in giving so much of himself away, leaves little scope for the kind of mystery that might enable his musical settings to transcend their functional pop status. [Feb 2013, p.60]

See all 24 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 2 out of 10
  1. Mar 4, 2013
    This album is arguably sonically complex. Layers of heavily (verging on over) produced melodies, effects and words collide together. Messy, striking waves crash, pulsate and breathe through every moment of this album. There is almost always something going on, something to take your attention. It shouldn't work. it should be an overproduced mess. It should be a pulpy, sticky primordial paste of an album with stretches of dull, bleak soundscapes punctuated by the odd crescendo that we have come to associate with modern pop music. But it does work. It works superbly. Because beneath the gloss and the layered production there is heart. This album is like a fine novel covered in a cellophane wrapper that at times bursts out and steals the stage, and with it; the listener's heart and soul. There are times in which all the craziness stops. All of the play-acting. All the masks are dropped and something rises from the ashes like a giant pheonix-cum-robot overlord straight from Transformers. Anxiety crafts a fortress of beats, melodies and synthetic emotion then burns it all down. From the remnants of modern perfection, something brilliant in the most old fashioned way arises. This album is the Beach Boys, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Pink Floyd, The White Stripes, Arcade Fire and everything I have ever loved about music on one LP. It may just be smokes and mirrors, but for now I may just be in love.

    However, I could write this pseudo intellectual twaddle for ages. I could do my best Pitchfork impression by telling you about my life and why this album is so important. I won't waste any of your time doing so. Just remember this: this album is a comfort blanket. It is your mum. It is where you go after a hard day. It's where you go after a good day. It's where you go when all hope is lost. It's where your battles have been fought. It's there, a warm, beautiful, orgasmic comfort blanket made from the best heroin anyone has ever mainlined. It's every joyous emotion you've ever experienced condensed into one. It's, for me, the best album ever made. DISCLAIMER: THIS IS MY OPINION, AND EXPRESSES MY TASTES. IT'S PROBABLY WRONG TO LOVE THIS ALBUM LIKE I DO, BUT THIS REVIEW IS BEREFT OF ANY IRONY AND IS SINCERE. IT WAS WRITTEN TO ENCOURAGE OTHERS TO LISTEN TO THIS MASTERPIECE.
  2. Feb 26, 2013
    This album is absolutely fantastic! I give this a 10 for the absolutely brilliant production and songwriting–flawless avant-pop! The highlights for me are the songs "Play by Play", "Gonna Die", "World War", and "A Lie" this album ASAP! Expand
  3. Mar 1, 2013
    Since the first playthrough of this album a few days ago, I haven't been able to stop listening. What Arthur Ashin lacks in powerful open-throat vocals he makes up for with inventive bellowing riffs and the rare case of overproduction being a compliment. Almost every song has an element which makes it stand out and keeps you coming back for more. If anything, the fact Arthur isn't the best singer but can still approximate the notes he's going for only adds to the inspiring vulnerability he puts on display. He is opening his heart and daring you not to open yours in return. To be fair, I'd normally give this album a 9/10 but am trying to offset the completely unreasonable Zeros some folks have given this. I mean jeez, even if you can't stand the vocals, you give a Zero to stuff like Metallica and Lou Reed's 'Lulu,' not something that's got actual talent and intrigue involved like 'Anxiety.' Expand
  4. Feb 26, 2013
    A brilliant piece of work! It showcases Autre Ne Veut's impressive vocals and seductive lyrics to a fabulous extent. Backed by flawless production, this album is a sonic treat and sexily kaleidoscopic. Expand
  5. Apr 10, 2013
    An awesome pop album, his voice is amazing, and his lyrics feel genuine. The 20/20 Experience is getting all the attention that this deserves. One of the best RnB albums to come along in a while. Can't wait to hear what he does next. Collapse
  6. Dec 26, 2013
    I was a little conflicted about this album at first. The production is superb. Pretty amazing music. On the other hand, his singing style does get annoying, at least on some tracks. There are fantastic tracks, and there are forgettable ones.

    But in the end, i believe the pros outweighed the cons. I'm definitely keeping an eye on this guy.
  7. Feb 28, 2013
    What an irritating record. So much that it would be irritating to write a review about it. Typical indie overglorification of white boy mediocrity. Get it together, Pitchfork. Expand

See all 10 User Reviews