Blueberry Boat - The Fiery Furnaces
Blueberry Boat Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 71 Ratings

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  • Summary: The brother-sister duo of Matthew and Eleanor Friedberger return with a second quirky, challenging and eclectic LP.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 34
  2. Negative: 3 out of 34
  1. The Fiery Furnaces have made one of the most ambitious and, quite likely, one of the best records of 2004.
  2. This is pop music, filtered through the minds, hands and voices of two artists whose vision reaches beyond the bounds of the form. [#7]
  3. It’s both an oddly comforting and exhilarating trip.
  4. In the end, this suite of suites sounds too inherently disorienting, however thrilling its fragments, and however entertaining it is to hear the Friedbergers' wordy, fantastical non sequiturs.
  5. "Blueberry Boat" will confuse first-timers with its cartoonish feel, but repeated listens start to reveal the subtle complexities that each song brings to the table, regardless of their seemingly short attention spans.
  6. 60
    For those who've wondered what The Who's rock operas would sound like if rerecorded by Captain Beefheart and Stevie Nicks, it's time to break the rules. [Oct 2004, p.103]
  7. Toe-curlingly unlistenable. [4 Sep 2004, p.73]

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 49
  2. Negative: 6 out of 49
  1. CameronW
    Dec 9, 2005
    This album gets better with every listen, and if you're able to invest the time I'd say anyone could love this album (I mean, if you're willing to and you like the general sound of it). Definitely my favourite of 2004! Expand
  2. EddieT
    Oct 8, 2004
    This is unquestionably my favorite album of the year so far. Like Lambchop's "Is a Woman" in 2002, I despised it at first and banished it from my CD player. Six weeks later I was stopping work to remember the words when they are talking to each other in "Chief Inspector Blancheflower." Look: my point is that everything is really, really catchy and memorable and fun once you make a small effort with it. It is a grower. Expand
  3. Thedude
    Jan 27, 2005
    People are idiots. If you don't like this album, I do not like you. Its not a matter of good taste anymore. If you can't handle the greatness of this album, the sweeping orchestral sections and crushing guitar, you have bad taste in music. Thats all there is to it. Enjoy your Britney Spears CD, Fiery Furnaces-hater. Expand
  4. ACE!
    Aug 4, 2004
    I hate to fall in line here, but this is a spectacular album. Even at first listen, its disorienting qualities were great, and even after multiple listens and increased familiarity, it still manages to stay interesting and evocative. Up there with Liars and Animal Collective for release of the year. Expand
  5. LouisF
    Oct 24, 2005
    I must first say that this record just doesn't know when to stop, which can be a bad thing. Not that the TRACKS are too long, but that songs 9 to 12 should have been left for another occasion. The problem with these is that they don't belong in the Blueberry Boat. 1917 would make a great opener for another album, exposing the excessively weird side as well as the poignancy of the Furnaces ; but by track 10, I think we got that. I would take Spaniolated anytime as a B-side, but here it just feels underdeveloped and out of sequence. Birdie Brain/Turning Round would have made a fine closer, but no!, they are in fact a pre-closer, the real one being Wolf Notes, which is also appropriate. In fact, this album is one of the rare ones to let you choose your own closer. Other than that, the first ~50 minutes of this record are simply a blast. It rocks you, teases you, laughs at you sometimes but mostly grips you with its unrelenting dynamics, sometimes poignant, more often quirky compositions, and stomps you under its flow of ideas. Thing is, the point is made after Chief Inspector Blancheflower (my personal favorite). The latter portion just feels like a chore. Wrapping up with Wolf Notes right away would have been a good choice, leaving more for the next time. Otherwise, this album is a great trip. Expand
  6. BernardA
    Oct 12, 2005
    After a year of hearing how great this is from every webzine from Pitchfork to Tiny Mix tapes I think that this an example of the music press going overboard in praising a merely good record. Yes it does sound different from most music released today but some of the songs have too much annoying keyboard blurts. I really liked the title track, Straight Street, My Dog Was Lost, Chris Michaels & Chief Inspector Blancheflower. Overall, a good effort but not so great that it would lead a reviewer from Pitchfork to write that anyone who doesn't like this has no taste. Expand
  7. brianm
    Oct 1, 2004
    how is this the best album of 2004? it doesn't even have an actual song

See all 49 User Reviews