Electric Arguments - The Fireman
Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 23
  2. Negative: 1 out of 23
  1. There are more twists and turns, more textures, than on any other McCartney album in the last 20 years, and if it's a little messy, so be it: it's better to have Paul letting it all hang out instead of hanging back.
  2. When taken alongside recent successes like Chaos and Creation and his stunning orchestral piece Ece Cor Meum, Electric Arguments hints that a late period renaissance could be underway.
  3. 84
    Electric Arguments makes a gravity defying leap from his supine position atop past laurels with an album showcasing incredibly raw rock, complimented by totally-not-cheesy electronic production. [Holiday 2008, p.98]
  4. This one studs its chilled-out world-beat electronica with pretty psych-folk melodies, propulsive rock grooves, and McCartney's raw 'Helter Skelter'-ish vocals.
  5. 80
    Depending on which Paul McCartney you like the most, you may or may not like what he’s done. But the best thing about Electric Arguments is that it sounds like the work of someone who doesn’t give a stuff what people are going to think. About time, too.
  6. The set peaks with 'Travelling Light,' a magical mystery tour of reverbed chants, slide-guitar swoops, kalimbas and chimes. It's freak folk by a forefather.
  7. Closing in on his sixth decade as a recording artist, it is heartening to see one of our national treasures still pushing the boundaries. Long may he continue.
  8. Arguments impresses most for its lack of inhibitions.
  9. His third stint as the Fireman, his partnership with producer Youth, finds the pair on inspired form, ready to take risks while knocking out a track a day.
  10. It's clear from the sheer range and energy on this album that McCartney is heeding his own advice.
  11. McCartney's bottomless well of melody ensures that none of it gets too far afield, even as the songs turn more amorphous as the album unfolds.
  12. Electric Arguments is a worthy addition to the canon of this eccentric gentleman trapped in the body of a pop star.
  13. Electric Arguments holds onto an original Fireman ideal: to make Paul McCartney sound less like Paul McCartney. That it does so within more traditional pop-song presentations-- while steering clear of McCartney's usual preferences for piano-pounded rockers and string-sweetened ballads-- is the ultimate testament to its success.
  14. For the most part, however, this is a gentle hybrid that, while not reaching the heights of either artists' best work, like Eno and Byrne's recent "Everything That Happens Will Happen Today", succeeds on its own terms, creating a new world without sounding too cloyingly contemporary, or too much like the work of ageing pioneers proving they can hang with modern times.
  15. Electric isn’t the most exciting album of the year, but it’s the most exciting McCartney effort in years. [Winter 2009]
  16. 70
    A few late-album glow-stick groovers abruptly shift the vibe to rave-era bliss, but until then, turn off your mind and float downstream.
  17. Electric Arguments does harbor its own unique charm that will certainly appeal to longtime fans moreover than Macca’s previous pair of Fireman jaunts.
  18. This plays like a B-side to that album ["Memory Almost Full"], adding polish to casually conceived melodies until they start to take on a studio life of their own.
  19. Without the filter and guidance of a strong writing partner, and without a personality able to temper his every whim, much of this album contributes to the argument that Paul’s output urgently calls for restraint.
  20. 60
    'Lifelong Passion' and 'Don't Stop Running' suggest that there's something inspirational, even cathartic, about making an album under an assumed name (even if the world know it's you). McCartney should do it more often. [Dec 2008, p.111]
  21. It's nowhere McCartney hasn't been before, yet it's still richer and more varied than he's been in years. [Jan 2009, p.116]
  22. It opens with the raucously bluesy 'Nothing Too Much Just Out Of Sight,' a promising start. But before long, McCartney reverts to pop messiah mode and tries to turn each tune into some grand statement about love, life and/or world peace in the hope that positive vibrations might inspire people of all races to join hands and sing along as one. Really.
  23. Their website trumpets the "pure musical possibilities" of Electric Arguments, but this is heavily laboured hackwork.

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