Arabia Mountain - Black Lips
Metascore
80

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. Jul 8, 2011
    90
    From backmasking to know-it-all moralists, Arabia Mountain is sprinkled with themes of human folly, aging, change, and corruption, enacted with humorous efficiency, delivered with instrumental-new word-subtlety, all to show, unsurprisingly, that the Black Lips differ greatly with the PTA over the corrupting agents of everyday life and their antidotes.
  2. Jun 30, 2011
    90
    The nine tracks Ronson produced on Arabia Mountain (Deerhunter's Lockett Pundt helmed two; Black Lips produced five) show he's equally adept at plundering the garage, psych and punk treasure troves.
  3. Jun 6, 2011
    85
    It's Ronson's dash of throwback style topped with the band's signature wild-child tendencies that make this album an impeccable partnership. It's so perfect of a fit, in fact, that Arabia Mountain not only emerges as the Lips' best-sounding record, but arguably their finest album to date.
  4. Jun 7, 2011
    84
    Awash in trippy reverb and surf-rock riffs, Arabia Mountain is further proof that the Lips have matured.
  5. Arabia Mountain is energetic, fun, loose, and immediate. Everything the Black Lips should be.
  6. Dec 12, 2011
    80
    Wild abandon never sounded so inviting. [Aug. 2011, p. 104]
  7. Jul 19, 2011
    80
    Their sixth sees Mark Ronson step in as producer on all but two tracks, and although he;s resisted the temptation to slather on Stax horns and apply his slick finish, he's given this tough, roughly energetic band focus and finesse. [Aug 2011, p.79]
  8. Jun 6, 2011
    80
    Black Lips puts on a hell of a show on Arabia Mountain, and it doesn't even need riots and stage diving to keep you interested.
  9. Jun 6, 2011
    80
    The disc is a blueprint of how to polish without compromise.
  10. Jun 6, 2011
    80
    The timing for a change was right, too, as their 2009 record 200 Million Thousand wasn't one of their best, it was OK but seemed a little forced and uninspired. Arabia Mountain is the absolute opposite and could be their best album yet.
  11. Jun 6, 2011
    80
    While like-minded bands fumble around with weighty concepts and overlong arrangements, the Black Lips remain purveyors of instant, unpretentious gratification.
  12. Jun 6, 2011
    80
    Mountain finds the band taking several huge leaps toward that end, resulting in a more cohesive picture of their sound and a band beating down a clear path for where they'd like to take their music.
  13. Jun 3, 2011
    80
    Ultimately, the accord reached between Mark Ronson and the quartet is that there's nothing wrong with the Black Lips formula; merely that their exuberance sometimes needs a calming hand on the shoulder. [July 2011, p. 115]
  14. Though by no means a disaster, they needed to hit back, and Arabia Mountain doesn't disappoint.
  15. Nov 3, 2011
    78
    Ronson reins in the raucousness without curbing the catharsis--on 16 tracks that blast newly crisp but equally irreverent.
  16. Jun 13, 2011
    77
    Arabia Mountain may be poised to push this band further over-ground, but they're not going up without a fight.
  17. Jul 28, 2011
    70
    Consistent, yes, but also vaguely disappointing, the band may be at the peak of their powers but it's almost a shame to see all the mystery drained away.
  18. Jun 15, 2011
    70
    The band either demonstrates a glorious and steadfast refusal to grow up, or become possessed by yelps that no amount of Auto-Tune could ever fix.
  19. Jun 14, 2011
    70
    They haven't changed their sound much, but more of the same is hardly a problem when it's this enjoyable.
  20. Jun 6, 2011
    70
    Black Lips may be leaving behind a certain amount of dirt and grime with Arabia Mountain, but are gloriously able to pull off their punky hi-jinks with aplomb. [May 2011, p.76]
  21. Jun 3, 2011
    70
    In the hands of dapper producer Mark Ronson, the glibly sloppy, lo-fi brats are almost sculpted into garage-punk sophistication, adding extended psychedelic guitar lines, fleshed-out percussion, even retro-soul sax.
  22. Jun 10, 2011
    60
    Production is loud and punchy and even the quiet bits aren't quiet, which makes all sixteen tracks in one sitting a bit like hard work.
  23. Jun 6, 2011
    60
    There are some great garage rock tunes, but too much filler to make for a great album. Maybe they should have trimmed a few of the 16 songs for a shorter but stronger work.
  24. Jun 2, 2011
    60
    There are four near-perfect EPs here, but it's a haul to listen to in one sitting. That's the insoluble conundrum of garage rock: the most perpetually exciting sound in rock easily outstays its welcome.
  25. 50
    The Lips' catalog is exhaustingly long, but Arabia Mountain is a fine reassertion that its talents extend far beyond running from venue security.
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 4
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 4
  3. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Sep 19, 2012
    8
    i thoroughly enjoyed this LP. Black Lips make experimental punk songs that are very catchy, very simple, and extremely effective. The more Ii thoroughly enjoyed this LP. Black Lips make experimental punk songs that are very catchy, very simple, and extremely effective. The more I listen to it, the more I catch onto it and enjoy it more. All In All, Black lips are a great band and this a great record. B+ Full Review »
  2. Jul 10, 2011
    8
    The Black Lips create a very upbeat, fun, enjoyable album. It's hard not to listen to this album and not tap your feet and bop your head,The Black Lips create a very upbeat, fun, enjoyable album. It's hard not to listen to this album and not tap your feet and bop your head, maybe even dance a little. Full Review »
  3. Jun 20, 2011
    10
    A rock record in a modern time with a classic soul: Arabia Mountain, probably bering the Lips finest album, is a true rock n` roll wonder.A rock record in a modern time with a classic soul: Arabia Mountain, probably bering the Lips finest album, is a true rock n` roll wonder. Ronson has been able to capture the intensity and the energy of the Atlanta band, while rendering their sometimes harsh sound as pop as rock would allow it. What we have here then is a catchy and urgent, happy and worried, fun and ecclectic record that makes you dance to a new favorite song every week after you got hooked to it. There`s a song about Spiderman, one about ice cream, one that makes you wanna surf... the diversity is great. I seriously wonder how they will top themselves on the next one... Full Review »