Content

  • Record Label: Yep Roc
  • Release Date: Jan 25, 2011
Metascore
71

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
Buy On
  1. Jan 21, 2011
    100
    Content is their best record since the late-Seventies, packed with savagely danceable riffs and rousingly incisive lyrics about consumerism, domestic fragmentation and political resistance.
  2. As they add the quaver of age to Andy Gill's slashes and modernize Jon King's animadversions with cellphone photos, comparison with the 20-year-old Mall quickly reveals how blessed the mainstays are in drummer Mark Heaney, who in the great tradition of Marky Ramone has both the musical sense to respect Hugo Burnham's simplicity and the historical savvy not to attempt an anachronistic replication.
  3. Jan 27, 2011
    89
    Peaks are pointedly hot, and Content's unfinished texture is a broadside against studio sterility.
  4. Q Magazine
    Feb 2, 2011
    80
    Post-punk quartet's first all-new record since 1995. [Feb. 2011, p. 117]
  5. 80
    Like some hibernating agit-prop agency awakening to meet the needs of these hard times, Gang of Four are in typically brusque form on their first new material for 16 years.
  6. Jan 25, 2011
    80
    Punk, funk and reggae contribute to the sound - along with hints of math-rock, Jimi Hendrix and David Bowie - only to get caught up in the music's precise melee.
  7. 80
    Newcomers might just wonder why these old dudes are ripping off Bloc Party.
  8. Uncut
    Jan 19, 2011
    80
    Content's fiery funk will have you bouncing around and beaming at the return of this inspiring, influential unit. [Feb 2011, p.87]
  9. Mar 4, 2011
    78
    Longtime fans might raise an eyebrow at the band's songs appearing in a videogame and Microsoft ad, but commercialism remains a part of Gang of Four's lyrics more than its sound.
  10. Mar 9, 2011
    70
    This is not a bad album, and if it weren't carrying the Gang of Four name, you might find it casually enjoyable.
  11. Feb 17, 2011
    70
    Gang of Four's latest is a consistently interesting and passionate record that illustrates their continuing relevance. What more could you reasonably ask for?
  12. Under The Radar
    Jan 27, 2011
    70
    They're as challenging as they were in their heyday throughout Content. [Year End 2010, p.70]
  13. Alternative Press
    Jan 19, 2011
    70
    The [absence of original bassist Dave Allen and drummer Hugo Burnham] is felt; at times, the album lacks the urgency and energy of the band's best work. Still, Content is an uncompromising experience. [Feb 2011, p.87]
  14. Jan 19, 2011
    70
    It's a more than satisfactory return for a band whose live performances this past couple of years suggest they're here for the long haul rather than any financially induced pangs of sentiment or nostalgia, and if Content is anything to by, one suspects the Gang Of Four's creative tank is far from empty
  15. Jan 19, 2011
    70
    Twenty years since their last album of new material, Gill and vocalist Jon King spit out splintered riffs and skewered tropes that approximate the band's peak on grabby party-starters ("Who Am I") and mesmerizing midtempo grooves ("A Fruitfly in the Beehive"). The rest are only slightly damaged goods.
  16. Jan 26, 2011
    68
    The band that brought the funk to punk isn't in much of a dancing mood here.
  17. Jan 25, 2011
    67
    Content certainly won't sully the Gang Of Four legacy, but it isn't likely to add to it, either.
  18. Mojo
    Apr 12, 2011
    60
    First album in 16 years for the post-punk maestros. Riveting and robotic. [Feb. 2011, p. 106]
  19. 60
    Be it from an as-yet-uncertain lineup or a sign of life and things to come from this ensemble, the unknown and the unheard may be the most fulfilling aspects Content has to offer.
  20. Jan 27, 2011
    60
    While it's admirable that these old dogs try to learn some new tricks, it's when they get away from what they do best that Content goes astray, particularly on the second half of the album.
  21. Jan 24, 2011
    60
    Gang of Four, who came up in the same scene and strove for a similar brand of smart, prickly post-punk, has a little harder time with the transition to modernity on Content, a weirdly anachronistic album that retains some of the band's signature qualities while landing on a strange new sound.
  22. Dec 9, 2011
    50
    Performances are generally middling, but a few songs show a glimmer of the band's former jagged glory.
  23. 50
    As far as this legendary foursome's new offering, Content, is concerned, well, at least they're not simply cruising on the laurels of their formidable back catalog, and to be fair, Content is no worse than other recent comeback albums by fellow post-punkers Mission of Burma, The Buzzcocks, and Wire.
  24. Jan 25, 2011
    50
    Where Gang of Four's earlier work rode on a thrilling push-pull tension, Content either pummels your eardrums or just slogs along. It's anti-capitalist mainly because you won't enjoy owning it.
  25. Jan 27, 2011
    40
    Jon King's vocals sound especially diminished, a reality underscored by the occasional electronic manipulation, while the cluttered mix overcompensates for repetitive songwriting. Without the vitality of youth, Gang of Four risk drowning in the sea of bands they inspired.
  26. Jan 24, 2011
    40
    Content (pronounced like the noun, not the adjective) is, in many ways, a return to form for the group.
  27. Jan 19, 2011
    40
    "I Was Never Gonna Turn Out Too Good" the lone standout on an otherwise turgid record, but that's only by virtue of its sheer oddness.

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