Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. Dec 21, 2012
    70
    There's no doubt that I Bet on Sky is a very good record. But at this point, the second honeymoon is over, and there's a barely perceptible distance growing.
  2. Dec 7, 2012
    70
    Their third post-reunion effort is less immediately engaging than its predecessor--perhaps due to a slightly uneven mix--but it remains true to the Dinosaur spirit while asserting a textual adventurousness that's often overlooked. [Nov 2012, p.70]
  3. Oct 1, 2012
    80
    The way all the pieces fit on I Bet on Sky gives you the idea that they're doing more than just letting bygones be bygones, but actually learning to appreciate one another in a way that allows them to play off each others' strengths.
  4. Sep 28, 2012
    90
    I Bet on Sky is the sound of a great, influential band that, yes, picked up where they left off, but instead of luxuriating in the sentimental hue of the moment, got back to work and kept moving forward.
  5. Sep 26, 2012
    80
    The group's strongest, most challenging and most cohesive offering in years.
  6. Sep 26, 2012
    70
    For all [the album's] obvious flaws, none of it seems to matter. When you hear that guitar soar, those rhythms pulse, and that voice cry out, you want to keep listening, for all 47 minutes. And when they're over, you want to do it again.
  7. Even if the highs aren't as high, like the rest of the reunited lineup's work, there really aren't any noticeable lows.
  8. Sep 21, 2012
    79
    All in all this is a kinder, gentler Dinosaur-- you won't have another "Severed Lips", sorry--making a very solid album, one that finds the band gelling with half the fuzz.
  9. Sep 20, 2012
    75
    Unfortunately, instead of being an ambitious failure, and despite all of the fantastic moments, I Bet On Sky makes the potentially more damaging fault of being "just alright."
  10. Sep 19, 2012
    60
    Though lacking the infernal dynamics of 2009's Farm, there remains sufficient compensation to delight Dino devotees. [Oct 2012, p.88]
  11. Sep 19, 2012
    80
    It's everything to be expected: Dinosaur Jr. sounds relaxed, takes a laid-back approach and still manages to make an album that stands up next to everything else that the band has released since its resurrection.
  12. Sep 19, 2012
    84
    Their 10th album, I Bet on Sky, offers a shortcut through their solid, sonic history.
  13. Sep 18, 2012
    76
    It's Mascis plodding on, warbling apathetically and then suddenly breaking into his shimmering birdsong. What motivates the consummate slacker band to continue is beyond all of us. But is anyone complaining?
  14. Sep 18, 2012
    70
    I Bet on Sky isn't the immediate winner that Farm was, but it's emphasis on tunefulness versus smack-you-in-the-face noise makes for a surprising winner and a pleasant late career left turn that gets better with each listen.
  15. 80
    Be it maturity, empathy, professionalism, or what have you, whatever Dinosaur Jr.'s doing is working.
  16. Sep 18, 2012
    83
    The disc may be act three of Dinosaur Jr.'s resurrection, but it hardly seems like it'll be its last.
  17. Sep 17, 2012
    60
    Their third post-reunion album is another assured collection, with J Mascis's dazzling guitar work as ever taking centre stage.
  18. Despite displaying their love of hardcore through certain parts of the album, Dinosaur Jr have created the most accessible heavy album of this year, with every track being suitable for any radio station or soundtrack.
  19. Sep 17, 2012
    80
    As always with Dinosaur Jr., underneath all that sound lie some sturdy bones, songs constructed with expert, unassuming craftsmanship and a sly wit, but it's the variety and adventure that makes I Bet On Sky something more than another excellent Dinosaur record.
  20. Sep 17, 2012
    70
    The band's formula is nowhere near broke, and while this tenth album might not necessarily expand on that greatly, it doesn't mean that anything about the band's music is in need of fixing.
  21. Sep 14, 2012
    60
    I Bet on Sky offers no variations on the grand theme, but pleasures in the detail.
  22. Sep 14, 2012
    70
    "Don't Pretend You Didn't Know" is a one-off messing with their recipe, still as compelling a mix of hardcore, jangle-pop, country and speed-metal as it was 25 years ago. [Oct 2012, p.77]
  23. Sep 13, 2012
    70
    There's certainly a harder edge to the sound, yet the songwriting is the key, with a set of tunes commercial enough to sucker you in, yet complex enough to maintain interest.
  24. Sep 12, 2012
    75
    [A] terrific, visceral album.
  25. Sep 11, 2012
    70
    [I Bet On Sky] is arguably the equal of their 80s heyday.
  26. Sep 10, 2012
    80
    Some listeners may lament this retreat from the hefty barrage of sound that was 2009's Farm, but it is crucial that a band such as this progresses and varies itself, and it is somewhat adorable that J is loosely retreading the road that his group took beforehand, only this time he is doing it the right way, with his pals Lou and Murph along for the ride.
  27. Sep 10, 2012
    60
    Any sense of experimentation and freedom is impossible to find. Are Dinosaur Jr trying too hard to be Dinosaur Jr? It's the way it seems.
  28. Sep 6, 2012
    40
    The mid-paced mellowness is too omnipresent and stifling. [Oct 2012, p.97]
  29. 60
    I Bet On Sky can feel a bit sleepy--although noise-cracked solos and psychedelic-quicksand riffs ultimately keep things lively. [Oct 2012, p.88]
  30. Sep 5, 2012
    65
    I Bet on Sky fits nicely within the band's catalog, former and present. [Aug/Sep 2012, p.109]
  31. Loud, weighty but oddly civilised.
  32. Sep 5, 2012
    70
    This isn't a reinvention of Dinosaur Jr. so much as a sideways glance; a new angle to help us appreciate their wonder in a new light.
  33. Sep 5, 2012
    80
    Peel back the layers, and you're confronted with a wealth of oft-unexpected sonic exploration. [#90, p.60]
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 19 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Sep 24, 2012
    8
    Let me start by saying I did not enjoy this album as much as their last effort "Farm". Now, that's not to say this album is bad because FarmLet me start by saying I did not enjoy this album as much as their last effort "Farm". Now, that's not to say this album is bad because Farm is an incredible album. If that album was an ocean of fuzz with waves of blistering solos, "I Bet on Sky" is a pool party. Much more upbeat, straight forward, and the solos mostly come in tidy little breaks. Some of the turns this album makes are hard to expect and admittedly hard to initially get used to. The Barlow songs on this one aren't as catchy to me as previous albums. J's singing is improving it would seem. I've always enjoyed his voice, but now it's stronger and more confident. No longer does it sound as if he's mocking himself with every syllable. The album ends on a fantastic note with "See It On Your Side". If any song on the album is classic Dinosaur Jr. it's this one. A bit melancholy, but not lacking that signature J Mascis intense solo we've come to love and expect.

    This album might not be your favorite, but if you're a Dinosaur Jr fan, you'll enjoy it. Once again J, Murph, and Barlow show that a reunion can produce music on par (and sometimes surpassing) their initial legacy.
    Full Review »
  2. j30
    Oct 4, 2012
    9
    The resurrection of Dinosaur Jr.'s original line-up has been a Godsend, first with the solid "Beyond" and then with the near great "Farm" andThe resurrection of Dinosaur Jr.'s original line-up has been a Godsend, first with the solid "Beyond" and then with the near great "Farm" and now with their most accessible album "I Bet On Sky". Once a band torn by internal issues with Lou Barlow and J Mascis, now sound like their making up for lost time. Full Review »