Evil Heat

  • Record Label: Sony
  • Release Date: Nov 26, 2002

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 24
  2. Negative: 1 out of 24
  1. A clear progression from 1997's broody 'Vanishing Point' and 2000's abrasive 'Xtrmntr', the seventh Primals album is genuinely their most diverse and consistently thrilling since 'Screamdelica'.
  2. The biggest detractor here is the band's lack of focus. The record is downright messy at times, even if the thick, murky quality does, in some instances, work to considerable effect.
  3. A letdown from the full-on intensity and imagination of their previous release.
  4. Not quite the apocalyptic inverse Screamadelica that XTRMNTR was, it’s still a damn site more radical, experimental and dangerous than anything produced by any other mainstream rock band this year.
  5. No great leaps of faith, no huge style shifts, just more of what we've come to love them for. But a bit more laid back and, erm, druggy? If that's at all possible.
  6. In many ways, 'Evil Heat' comes across as something of an amalgam of the Scream's many phases and, because of that, it doesn't necessarily take them forward as their work in the past has done.
  7. Thankfully, Kevin Shields puts together some great guitarscapes in Evil Heat -- maybe the best work he's done post Loveless. It's what saves this record, since Bobby Gillespie (as usual) tries to ruin some of these tracks with some pretty silly lyrics.
  8. Evil Heat... feels suspiciously like XTRMNTR outtakes, which isn't half as bad as it sounds; there's a sense of cohesion to the proceedings, and nothing, wisely, sounds remotely like the gossamer bliss-takes of Screamadelica.
  9. Where Kraftwerk, MC5, and Miles Davis used to tempt them to excess, here the production unites their diverse influences, every track attacking the speakers like an angry lunatic thrashing against the walls of a poorly soundproofed room.
  10. Their catchiest, most compelling record yet.
  11. Gillespie's lyrics will never win any Nobels, but the musical excitement generated here is impossible to deny.
  12. Evil Heat lacks a coherent vision and sounds, if anything, like Xtrmntr's cast-offs.
  13. Alternative Press
    Sadly, the electro-plated Evil Heat is neither evil nor particularly molten. [Jan 2003, p.99]
  14. Bobby Gillespie and company come up short here.
  15. Uncut
    Evil Heat doesn't exactly break new ground and often amounts to, strictly speaking, little more than pastiche. [Aug 2002, p.104]
  16. Mixer
    Ultimately, Evil Heat is more evocative than innovative, but why rewrite the book when it's already a compelling read. [Dec 2002, p.80]
  17. Blender
    What could have been an awful mess is instead a glorious mess. [#12, p.151]
  18. Urb
    While it misses the suicidal rush of imminent destruction, Evil Heat still sounds dangerously rash. [Jan 2003, p.76]
  19. Q Magazine
    On the down side, it's a record that fails to keep pace. [Aug 2002, p.133]
  20. As always, Primal Scream's sonics remain as thick as their hooks are slim.
  21. Mojo
    Less conceptually pure than its predecessor in terms of tone and motivation it may be, but Evil Heat's bespoke tailoring pays dividends time and time again. [Aug 2002, p.94]
  22. Spin
    Dark, electroshocked eighth album from Brit rock's premier party people. [Jan 2003, p.99]
  23. Magnet
    For all its attempts at hipster currency, Evil Heat reveals the needle-shaped creative hole where the drugs used to be. [#57, p.102]
  24. The Wire
    "Miss Lucifer"... [is] the first of many tracks on Evil Heat that cross rock 'n' roll and electro, only to get Sigue Sigue Sputnik. [#223, p.61]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 10 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. KidA
    May 13, 2006
    Ooh baby, do it again, ooh baby, come on baby do it again Skull X, City, and Detroit are amazing Everything else is decent
  2. rexj
    Dec 10, 2002
    keep thinking it'll grow on me but its hard to get past the overall lack of puch. should have called it 'safty dance.' but i keep thinking it'll grow on me but its hard to get past the overall lack of puch. should have called it 'safty dance.' but i have a sincere feeling that they mean well. maybe next time... Full Review »
  3. Bruno
    Aug 18, 2002
    Another masterpiece! 'XTRMNTR' was great but these records ('Vanishing Point' & 'Evil Heat') set real benchmarks!