Head in the Dirt


Generally favorable reviews - based on 11 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
Buy On
  1. Uncut
    May 24, 2013
    El Khatib and Auerbach pull off their modest yet elusive goal--to make a kickass record from start to finish--with brutal elegance. [Jul 2013, p.75]
  2. Apr 30, 2013
    HEK’s second album makes him sound more confident, distinct and comfortable in his own skin but thankfully not more fancier than his 2011 debut.
  3. Apr 30, 2013
    Head in The Dirt, the SF native’s sophomore offering, shows a delightfully vast range of influences.
  4. Under The Radar
    Jun 13, 2013
    With a nod to The Black Keys, El Khatib's distorted and raucous guitar plays perfectly off his punchy vocals. [Jun-Jul 2013, p.97]
  5. May 8, 2013
    Head in the Dirt definitely bears all the hallmarks of an Auerbach production--fuzz, funk and stadium-ready choruses--and often it's difficult to tell whether El Khatib is merely serving as Auerbach's stand-in. But the catchiness of his songwriting ultimately wins the day.
  6. Q Magazine
    Jan 27, 2014
    It doesn't keep up the quality all the way through but given his relentless enthusiasm from start to finish, El Khatib is probably used to people not keeping up with him. [Oct 2013, p.101]
  7. Classic Rock Magazine
    Oct 23, 2013
    [The album] runs from garage rock to impressive reggae-tinged fuzzstompers. [Sep 2013, p.93]
  8. Jun 5, 2013
    Head In The Dirt successfully picks up where El Khatib’s debut left off.
  9. 60
    For the most part, his rasping punk is a sexy but grotty treat.
  10. Apr 30, 2013
    For all of its weirdness, this album feels more like a pop record than his debut, and while Auerbach certainly didn't scrub all of the dirt and grime off of the album, it feels a lot more put together, bearing a lot of resemblance to the Black Keys' later work.
  11. May 8, 2013
    He's less convincing as a badass ("Family") than as a guy who fights desperation by partying ("Low").

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