Boys and Diamonds - Rainbow Arabia

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 14
  2. Negative: 2 out of 14
  1. Euro synth duo, tuneful and sometimes haunting, always droney fun‑-textured, beaty lines under an unnaturally high-voiced girly-woman singing lyrics of no importance when you can make them out, which isn't often.
  2. Mar 10, 2011
    Sometimes befuddling but never boring, Rainbow Arabia is making music that ultimately sounds like no one else's.
  3. Apr 28, 2011
    Tiffany Preston impishly tries on accents for her FX-thinned vocals, Jamaican brogue here or a lot of Karin Dreijer Andersson wailing there, but it's the omni-directional whirl and clashing textures that consume the most.
  4. Mar 10, 2011
    It may not be the most unique and memorable of albums, but there's a lot in Boys and Diamonds to like; great thumping melodies, intriguingly mad vocals and moments of beauty (particularly the delicate drumming that closes the album) and shows that Rainbow Arabia are a band that have the potential to be far more interesting than their mundane origins would suggest.
  5. Mar 10, 2011
    The overriding impression of Boys and Diamonds, however, is of MIA's global smash-and-grab style of musicianship minus the bonding agent of an overarching personality.
  6. Mar 10, 2011
    Boys And Diamonds is a madcap trek around the postmodern musical landscape of a world on the brink of catastrophe.
  7. Mar 10, 2011
    Like a lot of music benefiting from the blogosphere's voracious appetite for the new, Boys and Diamonds is a bricoleur's hodge-podge of style.
  8. May 2, 2011
    This follow-up to their debut shows more polish and a firmer grasp on rhythm. [Apr 2011, p.106]
  9. Mar 10, 2011
    What a lot of the divergent sonic explorations sum up to is an album that has a lot of ideas; perhaps more than what makes up a coherent pop record.
  10. Mar 9, 2011
    Boys And Diamonds is an album that takes two different roads. A journey down one avenue finds Rainbow Arabia exploring the unrefined, bespoke freedom of African rhythms, ad hoc instrumentation and unfiltered self-expression.
  11. Mar 18, 2011
    Boys and Diamonds bustles with African, Indian, and Caribbean rhythms, and boasts some genuinely interesting production in places. But the songwriting is ultimately too blocky and dull and slapped together for it to succeed as the thing it most wants to be-- a pop record.
  12. Apr 7, 2011
    The tunes can be slight, and sometimes their spirit of appropriation leaves them rather red-handed. [Apr 2011, p.91]
  13. 30
    Boys and Diamonds ends up being hindered by the the same awkward, mock-ethnic yelps the duo seems to feel the need for on every other song they cut and the empty, tinny nonsense they seem to arrive at all too often as they attempt to craft memorable pop.
  14. Mar 10, 2011
    Never mind the cultural appropriation bollocks, here's ethnotronic industrial pop.

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