Bankrupt! - Phoenix
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Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 86 Ratings

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  • Summary: The fifth full-length studio release for the French rock band was co-produced with Philippe Zdar of Cassius.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 41
  2. Negative: 1 out of 41
  1. 90
    The songs on Bankrupt! all still feature scintillating synths, gorgeous melodies and soaring moments of transcendent skill but with more of a flair for the dynamic tense of music.
  2. 83
    Best of all is "S.O.S. in Bel Air," a deceptively giddy song about the loneliness of guest-list-only parties. "Alone, alone, alone!" Mars sighs. And you can just imagine a stadium full of kids shouting the line back to him, alone together.
  3. Apr 22, 2013
    After the immediacy of Wolfgang, ‘Bankrupt!’ can seem like a sidestep. But delve deeper and this is an album reveals itself as a gem; one which mixes their crowd-pleasing hooks with an inventive shift in their sound.
  4. Apr 22, 2013
    The big thrills come so fast it almost feels like a blur, only equaled to the ravished excitement of making a score on a big night. It’ll knock you senseless, possibly bankrupt, until the urge comes back in full force.
  5. Apr 23, 2013
    By design, the new disc is less precisely crafted and more taken with posh, atmospheric grooves than hot power pop.
  6. Apr 25, 2013
    Despite the flashy production values and singer Thomas Mars’s wispy croon, it ultimately feels as superficial as its subject matter.
  7. May 10, 2013
    Not only does Bankrupt! propose a big, stadium-ready sound, it offers one that nearly suffocates its creators. [No. 98, p.59]

See all 41 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Jan 14, 2014
    Wonderful album. Definitely different than their last albums; that's one of the reasons I like it so much. If you don't go into this album expecting Wolfgang Amadeus (which seems like the only other Phoenix album many know), you'll be pleasantly surprised. Expand
  2. Apr 23, 2013
    The vocal melodies may meander slightly here and there, but everything else is so on-point I can't help but fall in love with it all. Phoenix remains king of that indie pop-rock sound. Expand
  3. May 20, 2013
    I'm going to say what I didn't like first. There are 3 songs on this new record I don't particularly like. Ironically, the title track 'Bankrupt!,' along with Chloroform, are my least favorite. Chloroform just seems underwritten (especially the lead synth part.)

    Ok, now for the good. The track "Trying to be Cool" is one of the best '2010's 80s-revival' songs I've ever come across, "Oblique City" is one of their most adventurous songs ever, and "Drakkar Noir" hints at their earlier attempts. Overall, I find this to be far more interesting than their record 'It's Never Been Like That' but probably won't garner the attention of 'Wolfgang Amadeus'
  4. Apr 23, 2013
    After the spectacular "Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix", I expected nothing less than something lukewarm, since it's predecessor was so great. "Bankrupt!" was just that, but also exceeded my expectations. Phoenix has moved more into synthpop, that's less bold than the last album, but still provides a peachy, fun vibe to each of the tracks, more specifically "S.O.S In Bel-Air", and "Trying To Be Cool".

    I'm sure some fans will be disappointed, but it's fun, and very easy to get into. 8/10
  5. Jun 2, 2013
    Decent record. Weaker than the previous album, but still strong enough for not being a total flatout. The minus point of this LP is that some tracks feel incredibly synthed, causing consistencies on those tracks. Highlight track: Drakkar Noir, S.O.S. in the Bel Air, Bourgeois Expand
  6. Oct 12, 2014
    This album provides a few great songs - Entertainment, Trying to Be Cool, and even the title track, which I'm sure isn't on the top of the charts, but it's actually an interesting track, sitting right in the middle of all the sugary pop. Some other tracks are pretty boring and aren't memorable at all. This album is worth a listen, but it's not a pop masterpiece at all. I would suggest The 1975. Favorite track: Bankrupt! Expand
  7. Jul 5, 2013
    Not as good as Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. It's really lacking something, but I can't particularly pinpoint exactly what. Not the worst, but don't pay for it. Expand

See all 18 User Reviews