Circus

  • Record Label: Jive
  • Release Date: Dec 2, 2008
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 22
  2. Negative: 1 out of 22
  1. Obviously all is still not perfect in Britney's world, but Circus still does more than enough to remind us of why she's one of the world's most iconic pop stars.
  2. Wildly if transitorily enjoyable at turns, vacuous and ignorable at others, Circus doesn't quite feel like a comeback, but I'm sure Brit's not above merely bringing pre-comeback.
  3. If she feels marginally more connected here than she did on "Blackout," it's a Pyrrhic victory, as Circus never feels as sleek or addictive as its predecessor.
  4. Circus isn't bad as pop albums go, but whether by default or design, it's substantially less edgy and exciting than its predecessor.
  5. 60
    Trying to express her actual feelings, instead of inhabiting a fantasy, she leaves us looking for an authenticity and vulnerability that isn’t in her skill set.
  6. Not everything hits the target, even with her hands gripped tightly around the controls, but she’s offered us something intermittently wonderful that proves she can still black us out even when she’s on the up and up.
  7. "Blackout" seemed like it signaled a more club-orientated path for Spears, like Madonna or Kylie Minogue, but Circus is a hodgepodge of pop themes that never really finds a face.
  8. Her voice--treated and autotuned to within an inch of its life throughout--still sounds like that of the Mouseketeer who brought us '...Baby One More Time’, with every breathy “Mmmm… yeah!” and all the oh-so-naughty lyrics, such as the ones above, sounding forced and unconvincing. Of course, on a large number of the tracks here she has the solidly cool-sounding (no doubt expensive) backdrop of futur’n’b pop.
  9. The cartoonish sound compensates for Spears' lack of range and lung power by allowing her to ham it up.
  10. It's too bad the best songs here don't really match up with her best performances, but that's nothing new for Spears.
  11. Spears is immersed in an often trite, intensely narcissistic look at her existence, crafted almost entirely by songwriters other than herself. That’s not to say that some of the songs aren’t catchy or danceable, but they’re wasted on a singer who brings no real personality along for the ride.
  12. Cynical vocodered mediocrity.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 430 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 99 out of 117
  2. Negative: 10 out of 117
  1. JamesB.
    Jan 5, 2009
    10
    I love it. Amazing!
  2. Mar 25, 2016
    10
    amazing album the best album of 2008 she did her thing on this album it was really her comeback album she nailed it with Circus and Blur andamazing album the best album of 2008 she did her thing on this album it was really her comeback album she nailed it with Circus and Blur and the album is timeless. Full Review »
  3. May 29, 2012
    10
    Simply 100% Perfect Album And Singles
    This Is The 1st Britney Album That Should Get A Perfect 10/10!
    Great Album!