If You Leave - Daughter

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. May 6, 2013
    What emerges is a fascinating, infinitely bleak break-up album, but one without the scope of Disintegration or the raw, intellectual power of Blood on the Tracks.
  2. Apr 29, 2013
    Even if their meditations on heartbreak and death can be overwhelming occasionally, If You Leave proves that Daughter can channel a single mood over the course of an entire album with often exquisite results.
  3. Apr 29, 2013
    There are a lot of topic sentences about If You Leave that won’t tell that story--the defiant moment, clearer and less guarded revelation--but it’s captivating to watch Tonra shake off the burden she’s locked herself up with.
  4. 80
    These cavernous guitar effects, corrosive beats, and inspiring melodic twists magnify If You Leave, an album with true grandeur and occasion.
  5. Mar 22, 2013
    The group's debut full-length album picks up where its EP left off. [Mar-Apr 2013, p.91]
  6. Mar 21, 2013
    Soaring and swooping in all the right places, there's no denying the gorgeous ethereal shimmer and dizzying demonstrative pull of these songs.
  7. 50
    Both musically and lyrically, Daughter ain’t half as clever as they clearly think they are (people get serious and clever mixed up a lot, weirdly).
  8. Mar 18, 2013
    By turns, If You Leave is word-in-the-ear intimate and mountain-range massive.
  9. Mar 18, 2013
    While all the elements are there it seems far too eager to drift into not only the background but also into itself, with it turning into musical wallpaper and into one, long indistinguishable track with worrying ease.
  10. Mar 18, 2013
    Tonra's voice is breathy and sweet and unremarkable, breaking sometimes into a wrenched whisper, that should be heartbreaking but, more often than not, is just a bit grating.
  11. Mar 15, 2013
    An album as beautifully conceived as If You Leave is one you follow from start to finish, riveted by the story it weaves and the emotion it bleeds.
  12. Mar 14, 2013
    These songs are atmospheric, but feel calculatedly so, especially set against the overwrought poetry of Tonra's lyrics.
  13. Mar 14, 2013
    Heavy it most certainly is, but Daughter succeed simply by creating phenomenally beautiful music and heart-rending songs.
  14. Mar 12, 2013
    If You Leave is a damaged debut, then, but the way the hues of its bruises blend into each other is wholly hypnotic. It wants to love, again, but has chosen darkness.
  15. Mar 12, 2013
    These fine-spun talents are too frequently suffocated by the album;s production, which ignores the songs' subtler details in favour of something more epic. [Apr 2013, p.89]
  16. Mar 12, 2013
    There's an unwelcome hint of Florence Welch's swollen emotionalism on "Tomorrow," but the surging pop of "Touch" is more successful. [Apr 2013, p.69]
  17. Mar 12, 2013
    There's stark simplicity to Tonra's lyrics that's evocative enough to consistently land emotional haymakers. `[Apr 2013, p.99]
  18. 95
    If You Leave is staggeringly beautiful from beginning to close, a catharsis that’s both bracing and woozily amniotic.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 26 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 4
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 4
  3. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Jun 1, 2013
    This debut album by London trio Daughter will draw comparisons to The XX but there is also a trace of Lykke Li and even Mazzy Star. Like The XX Daughter utilise space as much as they do sound resulting in songs rising and falling to great effect and while the music is sparse at times with chiming guitars and rumbling beats the band secret weapon is in Elena Tonra’s haunting vocals. Her voice draws you in closer to the songs like an emotional magnet holding your complete attention as she tells tales of broken hearts. Take the lyrics to Stand out track ‘Youth’ for example ‘And if you're still breathing, you're the lucky ones, 'Cause most of us are heaving through corrupted lungs, Setting fire to our insides for fun, Collecting names of the lovers that went wrong.’ its breathtakingly cutting while being completely genuine at the same time, this girls been hurt before and here’s the story laid bare for all and set to beautiful music. Dark-pop, jaundiced folk whatever you decided to call it this is an assured record for a debut and one you all should actively seek out, this band is going to be big and deservedly so. Full Review »
  2. May 29, 2013
    Take everything that makes Florence the Machine over the top, add a little Wye Oak, and you've got yourself If You Leave. This eerie, haunting, richly atmospheric collection of songs that might not vary much in mood, but have enough emotion and great songwriting to really hold its own. Full Review »
  3. May 7, 2013
    If You Leave may never be a hit, but is in the shadows where this amazing album must be listened to, or at least that's what I think Tonra wants us to do. The marvelous sounds and poetry of Tonra's lyrics turn Daughter's first album in the best think I have listened to in years. This one comes from the heart, a damaged heart, and a brilliant mind. The ethereal instrumentation makes the perfect match to such a melodic voice. But it is obvious that the most remarkable thing here is the songwriting which, in the words of this mortal, makes everything a sweet mess: It's weird how we love to be so sad. To finish, I just want to say this: Elena, take my soul, I'm on my knees. Full Review »