Black City - Matthew Dear

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. 100
    The cumulative results of his efforts are a masterpiece both dark and striking. Dear is putting forth an open invitation to tour these shadowed places of his imagination, and this is one offer too good to miss.
  2. The lyrical immediacy and intimacy lift Black City leagues above much of the disassociated drivel that's labeled vocal house.
  3. It's predictably brilliant; another display of Dear's dazzling musical imagination.
  4. Black City is his thesis on how he's capable of delivering a dark, lustful album just as easy as he can mine more bubbly, melodic sounds. Beyond this, he's delivered one of the more cohesive and thematically sound albums of the year so far.
  5. The production is as inventive and immersive as ever, but what separates this album from the last is that Dear mostly sticks with one theme all the way through.
  6. Black City overall is lean and upbeat, and Dear's gift for making an arrangement jump within snug confines continues to evolve.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 11 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 26, 2014
    The tracks on their own have enough poignancy to warrant multiple listens, and although Dear's production shows prowess in establishing synchronicity, the lyrical component does not match, leaving itself to feel like forced conceptual catharsis. If it wasn't for the release of 'Headcage', 'Slowdance' would be the lone unforgettable standout of Dear's ambitious catalogue. Full Review »
  2. Sep 15, 2010
    This album provides a skillful level of cohesion throughout its tracks. The multiple layering of vocals creates ambient lyrical environment. Musically, the album contains interesting percussive details, and comparisons aside, at times spans popular genres. While "Dark City" is certainly a dark album, its turning point comes during 'Monkey", a slightly humorous pick-me-up before the end. Replay value: 3/5. Full Review »