Demon Days

  • Record Label: Virgin
  • Release Date: May 24, 2005
Metascore
82

Universal acclaim - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. It not only eclipses the first Gorillaz album, which in itself was a terrific record, but stands alongside the best Blur albums, providing a tonal touchstone for this decade the way Parklife did for the '90s.
  2. Alternative Press
    70
    The music is mostly an interesting hybrid of unlikely elements and naggingly catchy tunes. [Jul 2005, p.186]
  3. Demon Days actually is even better than its predecessor.
  4. The results are reason enough for Damon Albarn's other outfit to finally pack it in.
  5. Blender
    70
    Darker and colder than its predecessor but, surprisingly, more fun. [Jun 2005, p.109]
  6. What’s particularly interesting about Demon Days is not that they have half of a good record--there are plenty of albums that can’t even manage that--it’s that it’s so clearly the first half.
  7. Innovative as it is satisfying.... It’s hard to imagine a more realized meld of hip-hop, electronica, and post-rock.
  8. Utterly unique and frequently wonderful.
  9. Albarn’s ability to slither arrogantly from genre to genre while maintaining his charm is truly remarkable.
  10. So many names, so many influences: perhaps unsurprisingly 'Demon Days' is a dizzying, disorientating and sometimes directionless album.
  11. 100
    Get past the dark stuff and Demon Days reveals a stash of songs that are more fun than a Hong Kong Phooey marathon.
  12. Entertainment Weekly
    75
    Spookier, blippier, and more on edge. It's also not as cohesive. [27 May 2005, p.136]
  13. Filter
    80
    Amazingly, only a couple of times does the broadness of what is going on get in the way or misfire... and at album's end, you can look back in wonder at how in the hell a barrel of cartoon monkeys managed to pull it off again. [#15, p.93]
  14. The record's disparate experiments are unified by an overriding darkness, the black light Albarn shines on the dancehall. It's this unusual tone that makes Demon Days intriguing long after it's ceased to be novel.
  15. Los Angeles Times
    88
    It's Albarn's evocative words, compelling if understated melodic sense and subdued vocals that are the emotional center, transcending the gimmick even more than on the first Gorillaz album. [22 May 2005]
  16. Less accessible than its eponymous predecessor, it creates a darker, less cartoonish world where hip-hop, brit-rock, electronica and Dennis Hopper monologues all seem perfectly at home.
  17. Mojo
    80
    Funky, playful but sinister like the best children's stories. [Jun 2005, p.98]
  18. Demon Days as a whole is a thing of considerable depth and melancholia and offers rather more soul than the cartoon gimmick would suggest.
  19. Before you even consider the sonic and melodic innovation paraded through the album there’s so much crammed into each of these fifteen songs (without any one of them sounding overproduced or cluttered) that repeated listening is a must.
  20. The sound is more psychedeli-danceable than ever.
  21. Like the Gorillaz's self-titled debut, Demon Days goes the way of most auteur projects, its oversize idea load making for a trip equal parts peak and valley. But also like the debut, Demon Days is better than it has any right to be, featuring singles stronger than anything released under the Blur banner since, you know, that "Woo-hoo" song.
  22. Planet
    70
    The results are sinister. [#10, p.70]
  23. About as disappointing a follow-up as you could ever imagine.
  24. As you listen to it more and more, the music begins to make sense, the hooks come into focus and everything appears in sharp resolution, manifesting itself in a giant pop animal created for your indulgence.
  25. Q Magazine
    90
    [Danger Mouse's] stunning flourishes... help place Demon Days notches above any vaguely electronic release in recent memory. [Jun 2005, p.104]
  26. It's [the] beats by Danger Mouse that make "Demon Days" a winner, even when the Gorillaz concept threatens to overwhelm itself with pretentious twaddle.
  27. Surprisingly, Albarn's vocals, phoned-in and incredibly flat, weigh the record down.
  28. Granted, the world isn’t exactly better off since since the last Gorillaz album, but that doesn’t mean we need to be reminded of it by a loose collaborative outfit that will never be mistaken for the Clash when it comes to political or social consciousness.
  29. Demon Days is decidedly bleaker than its predecessor.
  30. Spin
    75
    Danger Mouse sets a consistent tone that wryly chafes against Albarn's paranoia. [Jun 2005, p.105]
  31. A much more consistent and coherent album, equaling Gorillaz’s high points and easily besting its shortcomings.
  32. It's all quite innovative and cool, and Albarn's deadpan vocals suggest a Han Solo-like seen-it-all interplanetary weariness. Too bad it lacks a track as tight and memorable as the fluke 2001 hit "Clint Eastwood" to anchor it in place.
  33. First impressions could not be more wrong. Demon Days goes boldly against the current trend for brash immediacy and instead repays time and effort on the part of the listener.
  34. Uncut
    90
    A dazzlingly clever record--great beats, brilliant production, top tunes and some of Albarn's best singing. [Jun 2005, p.106]
  35. Under The Radar
    80
    [Albarn's] sad, plaintive vocal presence elevates near-filler tracks like "November Has Come"... [and] sub-par tracks like the experimental "White Light" and... "Fire Coming Out Of The Monkey's Head" all but beg for Albarn's persona to return. [#10, p.111]
  36. Urb
    90
    Brilliant.... This album sounds like Albarn and Danger Mouse are an inspired team. [Jul/Aug 2005, p.101]
User Score
9.0

Universal acclaim- based on 315 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 10 out of 132
  1. Dec 3, 2010
    10
    One of the greatest mix of music styles and imaginations - pleasant and disturbing, rough and smooth, apocalyptic and dreamy. Singles willOne of the greatest mix of music styles and imaginations - pleasant and disturbing, rough and smooth, apocalyptic and dreamy. Singles will make you feel fresh but whole album can leave huge mark on your attitude to modern music. Full Review »
  2. TylerF
    May 24, 2005
    10
    wow!!! I'm blown away. i liked the Gorillaz debut album but this one just blows it out of water. I mean, it's so damn catchy. wow!!! I'm blown away. i liked the Gorillaz debut album but this one just blows it out of water. I mean, it's so damn catchy. I'm just hope I don't have to wait another 4 years for the next album. Full Review »
  3. Jan 4, 2015
    8
    Even though the album does get excessively weird for my taste, Demon Days is a great follow-up to their solid self-titled album. It's gotEven though the album does get excessively weird for my taste, Demon Days is a great follow-up to their solid self-titled album. It's got great beats and some absolutely magnificent lyrics. This is one worth listening to. Full Review »