Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. What truly counts here is persona and with E casting himself as dog in heat, eager to reach a scratch that he just can't itch, the end result is yet another facet to a continually engaging and truly unique artist.
  2. The theme is relatable, and relevant because it encompasses more than that one side of desire we all expect to hear about. This exploration and focus is what held together Eels’ 1998 masterwork, "Electro-Shock Blues." It does the same here.
  3. 80
    Lean and timeless sounding, it's also as truthful as Everett's sobering autobiography, Things The Grandchildren Should Know. [Jun 2009, p.104]
  4. 80
    It’s E’s lyrics that are the true, bitter joy of this record, sacrificing nothing of their wit in pursuit of heartbreaking, heartbroken directness.
  5. This is a beautifully crafted, stripped-down recording, showcasing once more that E uses searing honesty and a canny sense of pop, rock, blues, and everything else to chronicle his own strange path through life and its labyrinth.
  6. The garage rock is fun, but the mesmeric admissions of loneliness and failings make this one to return to.
  7. Hombre Lobo: 12 Songs of Desire is another record that hones and refines what it means to be Eels. Mark Oliver Everett continues his daring and heart-baring, and we continue to be the better for it.
  8. This record is still pure E--invigorating in its obsession, desperation, vulnerability, and brilliance. [Summer 2009, p.65]
  9. This emotional rollercoaster of an album has a few cleverly disguised cliches similar to 'emotional rollercoaster' embedded in the music and lyrics.
  10. Everett's songwriting hasn't always kept pace with his musical and literary ambitions. But these tales of frustrated desire are vividly sketched, with the Eels delivering muddy roadhouse rockers.
  11. Each track contains elements that sound similar in combinations of tone, texture and melody from previous records, so this album is not necessarily a knockout. However, the band’s artistic hybrid is delivered with a fervent honesty and steeped in an emotional intensity that may make it sound a lot like other Eels material.
  12. The sound is deliberately barren. The guitars never quite fill the space, and the drumming (credited to Knuckles) often has the mechanized indifference of drum-machine tracks.
  13. It's hard not to wish that there were more remnants of his earlier studio-nerd genius; there's the twist-beat and buzz-bass of 'Lilac Breeze' and the plod of 'Tremendous Dynamite,' but there's no build to them.
  14. The album somewhat loses its steam halfway through, only because the flow starts to feel too predictable.
  15. There’s nothing on Hombre Lobo (Spanish for werewolf) that couldn’t be constructed by breaking down the DNA of the previous six Eels albums and repiling the strands up in some melodically fresh but warmly recognisable way.
  16. 60
    The gentler E distances himself from his lycanthropic alter ego, searching for Ms. Right backed by a familiar arsenal of winsome melodies and elegant string arrangements.
  17. Hombre works best when it fully embraces its titular beast: 'Fresh Blood' finds excitement in a brooding groove, and rattles when Everett literally howls. Unfortunately, those are exceptions: The rest of the album just isn’t cohesive enough to entice much repeated listening.
  18. There’s something oddly sweet about how completely out of step Eels are with trends and genres, something nourishing about how secluded their music has become. Shame, then, that it must necessarily also be so exclusive.
  19. Hombre Lobo is much more effective when Everett keeps things one-dimensional, as in 'Tremendous Dynamite,' a deliciously fuzzy blues-punk rave-up in which he describes being "on the prowl for a restless night," and 'Beginner's Luck,' a jubilant ode to the boundlessness of new love.
  20. It would be too easy to dog Hombre Lobo as a case where going back to the well leads to diminishing returns, but the problem is just that Hombre Lobo is too easy.
  21. Though doubtful it was crafted for such a purpose, Eels's latest is simply not much beyond a forgettable earful for a lazy Sunday listen.
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 23 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Feb 7, 2012
    10
    Wow, this is E at his best, every track sounds fresh and shows eels diversity, powerful stuff.
  2. Dec 12, 2011
    8
    A peach of a record from start to finish and probably my favourite Eels album. It's one of Mr E's most focused and sharp collection of songsA peach of a record from start to finish and probably my favourite Eels album. It's one of Mr E's most focused and sharp collection of songs and has everything you'd want from an Eels record. Lovely lyrics, tuneful melodies and should have gotten more praise really than it did. Full Review »
  3. DavisW.
    Jul 20, 2009
    7
    A bit of a disappointment, but a strong and solid record nonetheless. E is still the man.