Crystal Castles - Crystal Castles
Crystal Castles Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 67 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: The debut full-length album for the Toronto duo of Ethan Kath and Alice Grass.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. With Crystal Castles’ infectious, eclectic music, this is easily one of the highlights of the year and a great addition to the super-genre that is electronic music.
  2. It's clear that Kath and Glass are already looking for more ways to expand on this familiar-sounding, edgy, innocent, menacing, bold, nuanced, and altogether striking debut.
  3. Glass’s voice, too, is the same that’s been luring lusty seamen onto the rocks for millennia, but the way it and the drums are textured--so that the machines they’re passed through sound like they’re melting away--brings Crystal Castles to the outer edges of greatness.
  4. Every song is serrated with pixel edges, and Alice Glass’ sometimes morose, sometimes lilting like a Valley girl vocals vibrate with such catchy and violent gloom that it’d send any human/marmoset/sentient being into an epileptic dance session.
  5. 70
    Producer Ethan Fawn's dynamic overlays of crisp, factory-stomped melodic lines carry Glass's unintelligible lyrics straight to neon-lit nausea heaven.
  6. 60
    What could be a kitschy nostalgia trip, however, becomes something more thanks to the songs themselves. [Apr 2008, p.94]
  7. Crystal Castles is definitely a fun listen just don’t expect something highly experimental or interesting.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 14
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 14
  3. Negative: 2 out of 14
  1. ThomasM.
    May 6, 2008
    Who cares if previously released stuff is compiled here and there is little new material? It's all friggin' awesome.
  2. Aug 25, 2014
    Few albums have felt as coherent, cohesive, catching, striking, exquisitely tasteful and easily digestible as Crystal Castles (I), and even less at a debut. Everything here sounds magic, esoteric, broken, electronic (taking the most literal meaning the word can possibly have). Expand
  3. Sep 26, 2012
    Took me awhile to discover this band, but it was completely worth the thrill of discovering them. I'm not the biggest fan of electronic music, but Crystal Castles are unlike any electro band I've ever heard. I was completely blown away from this LP.It's a little over 50 minutes but it breezes by so smoothly and lush that you don't realize it's ended already. It's indie electroclash at it's finest. I'll go so far to say that I loved each track, which is a little rare for me. Some tracks are very abrasive (Alice Practice) and some are very lush and beautiful (Magic Spells). All In All, probably the best electronic album I've heard since Discovery by Daft Punk. A Expand
  4. JeremyF.
    Mar 29, 2008
    This is a delightful little tight package of dancey, electro blips and bloops and grinds and whirs that accumulate to a victorious work. The vocals in "Untrust Us" aren't even complete words, just scraps of what were once [presumably] words. However, despite the wordlessness, this song contains the best melody of the record, and is one of the best songs of the year thus far. "Crimewave" is pure fun electro-dance, and "Good Time" is a lighthearted bopping number. "Alice Practice" is filled with Glass' otherworldly screams and cries, while "Courtship Dating" is an even less accessible jumble of senselessness. "Magic Spells" is pretty, but too long, and aside from that, it's fine. This is a great cd with few missteps. Fun to last for years. (And it also makes me want to dust off my SNES...) Expand
  5. Nov 23, 2011
    Among the most distinctive acts to appear in the second half of the noughties were Crystal Castles. They are not really famous for music but for their riot-like gigs. Alice Glass, the vocalist, would scream, run, climb, dive, spit, and who knows what else. Even a serious injury could not stop her from playing. She is the face of the duo but as usual in such cases the mastermind stays in the shadow. Ethan Khan, the producer, is responsible for Crystal Castlesâ Expand
  6. Nov 3, 2010
    Love these blip blops! Seriously love this duo so much. Deserves higher rating but like most good music it is left behind underrated just because it's a different sound. That different sound is what makes Crystal Castles so unique and great. Collapse
  7. MarcR.
    May 10, 2008
    Too bad the band accumulated a reputation of being innovative and building an atari-chip based keyboard while all they did is to ripp off existing songs from other people without giving them proper credit. Expand

See all 14 User Reviews