Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. As with their last two albums, Clinging to a Scheme stands to further expand the Radio Dept.'s cult. Economy has never been an issue for the band, but here, things are further tightened up.
  2. Clinging to a Scheme feels more haphazard, more Revolver (1965) than Abbey Road (1969) as it goes from searing ambience (“A Token of Gratitude”) to the thicker-figured dance tracks. The album leaves you wanting more--whether this is for better or worse is one question you’ll have to answer for yourself.
  3. Further spins reveal the charms of the non-single tracks, and the whole thing ends up being one of the best examples of all the things that help make Swedish pop so magical. For once, all the pre-release hype and anticipation has been justified; the Radio Dept. have delivered the best work of their career.
  4. The Radio Dept. have cleverly managed to conjure up music with a thoroughly minimal feel, despite this hive of activity instrumentation-wise.
  5. It’s a surprise that the band managed to get through those weird four years and make such a consistent album--from front to back it’s exceptionally well sequenced.
  6. Whether by design or evolution, The Radio Dept’s third album fits the grand scheme of all things voguish and hazy rather perfectly--though that’s not to say they’ve made a faultless record, as ‘Clinging To A Scheme’ arguably hangs from just a few songs.
  7. This is a solid, feel-good winner of an album that applies enough variety to feature in a number of your day to day routines and make them that much more special by association.
  8. Ultimately, this is the same Radio Dept. we know, love and hardly ever hear from. We’ll take what we can get.
  9. If Clinging is at all a departure from the Radio Dept.’s previous pleasantries, it’s along the two most valuable vectors: outward and upward. Although their sound has always seemed certain, it’s never been this clear.
  10. Emerging at the end, the listener has a real sense of having been immersed in something coherent and whole over the course of the 10 tracks; even if at the same time--dreamlike--there may well be no such clear sense of what it all might have meant.
  11. It's somethng fans are sure to enjoy. [Winter 2010, p.65]
  12. The Radio Dept. are comfortable in their safety, the masters of indie pop/shoegaze fence-sitting, neither here nor there in message or meaning. It’s a stance they’ve refined with each release and Clinging to a Scheme rocks back and forth cautiously over a safety net of the softest cotton, never in any danger of losing its footing in the first place.
  13. A four-year wait is inexcusable, especially when more than half of the album exudes familiarity.
  14. Immaculately crafted, and with a smattering of good songs, it's also disappointingly samey, with all too little standing out and demanding to be heard. [May 2010, p.125]
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 17 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 2, 2014
    10
    Clinging To A Scheme is responsible for being one of the most fun pieces I have ever heard, assuring I make a fool of myself when I hum orClinging To A Scheme is responsible for being one of the most fun pieces I have ever heard, assuring I make a fool of myself when I hum or even sing along with Johan during class, and being one of my personal favorite albums of all time. I find myself drifting away into a world full of nostalgic melodies and catchy hooks. The Instrumentation is completely flawless, everything is in it's proper place. The way that the 10 songs on this album are arranged weather it's the drums, guitars, vocals, keyboards, or even speaking samples never fails to blow me away. I feel like this is an essential album for anyone that enjoys easy-going music of any kind. Just a wonderful perfect project that has made a big impact on the music I listen to. Full Review »
  2. AlbertoF.
    Apr 26, 2010
    10
    It's so soft, so beautiful... just perfect, the Thurstoon Moore's sample is so awesome too.