Is This It?

User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 511 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 19 out of 511

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  1. danielw.
    May 17, 2008
    9
    Great and easy listening, but can get a little boring. Still a very good album
  2. unico
    Aug 13, 2008
    6
    I still don't get how the world thinks the strokes re-invented rock'n'roll. this is a decent album, indeed! it may have brought indie/rock music to a broader audience aging, but that doesn't make it better music. clever album above average, but nothing more. 6.
  3. matthews.
    Oct 22, 2008
    9
    Almost every song is perfect. Very stripped down, and yet large in sound
  4. jen
    Feb 8, 2009
    8
    No one thinks The Strokes re-invented rock and roll. That was never the claim or the point. I find it interesting that the very people who hate having the press shove music down their throats are the very people who base their opinions of a band's music purely on their media coverage. Is This It? is filled with beautifully crafted rock and roll grooves from start to finish. Pure and No one thinks The Strokes re-invented rock and roll. That was never the claim or the point. I find it interesting that the very people who hate having the press shove music down their throats are the very people who base their opinions of a band's music purely on their media coverage. Is This It? is filled with beautifully crafted rock and roll grooves from start to finish. Pure and simple. If I had one criticism, the lyrics leave a bit to be desired. Expand
  5. BenF.
    Feb 14, 2009
    10
    Teriffic. I loved it since I was nine. They bring some classic rock feel into this. One of my favorite music of all time.
  6. SebastianF.
    May 2, 2009
    10
    Pure bliss to listen to.
  7. thegame
    May 7, 2009
    10
    The album is purely amazing. sure it may not be the "definining" or music changing album that the media puts it out to be, but its regardless an extremely good album. Don't hate over the strokes over the hype- its not like they planned it all out?
  8. nasnou
    Jun 22, 2009
    10
    The strokes neither started nor flaunted the hype, so why would it be their fault if they were hyped by the press? it still doesn't change that this album is solid, powerful and one of the greatest albums of the 2000's.
  9. KyleB.
    Aug 15, 2009
    10
    Amazing first album for a band. The guitar playing the drumming, and the singing was excellent. Cheers Strokes and good luck on many more amazing albums.
  10. MichaelH.
    Aug 19, 2009
    10
    Considering Is This It? is the debut album from hard indie rockers The Strokes, it's is absolutly amazing and incresdibly done. There isn't one song of the album that is dull or boring, each song is individual and yet works together beautifully to create a piece of exceptional music.
  11. DougG
    Aug 24, 2009
    10
    Stunning Debut
  12. JoeyK.
    Mar 30, 2010
    10
    Is this it, the debut album of the Strokes, is a testament to its time, still probably the greatest "indie" album to be created (for what its worth, it still has major influence) in all major venues of the alternative music industry, and to that "Is This It." receives the 10 it deserves.
  13. RichardB
    Apr 4, 2010
    9
    I admit that so far The Strokes have yet to outdo their debut effort, so its understandable to think that they might be a flash in the pan. Still, coming up with an entire album of a masterpiece takes skill. Let's break it down track by track Great tracks: The Modern Age, Soma, Barely Legal, Last Nite, Hard to Explain, Alone Together Good Tracks: When It Started, Is This It, Take It I admit that so far The Strokes have yet to outdo their debut effort, so its understandable to think that they might be a flash in the pan. Still, coming up with an entire album of a masterpiece takes skill. Let's break it down track by track Great tracks: The Modern Age, Soma, Barely Legal, Last Nite, Hard to Explain, Alone Together Good Tracks: When It Started, Is This It, Take It or Leave It, Someday Meh Tracks: Trying Your Luck. Expand
  14. StevenW.
    Apr 12, 2010
    10
    Easily one of the greatest albums of the decade. By itself it kick started the garage rock revival and indie rock breakthrough of the early 21st century. Is This It transformed mainstream music from teen pop and rap into urban dwelling youngsters playing guitars. Without this there will absolutely be no Arctic Monkeys, the Libertines, the Vines, Kings of Leon, or any other skinny jean Easily one of the greatest albums of the decade. By itself it kick started the garage rock revival and indie rock breakthrough of the early 21st century. Is This It transformed mainstream music from teen pop and rap into urban dwelling youngsters playing guitars. Without this there will absolutely be no Arctic Monkeys, the Libertines, the Vines, Kings of Leon, or any other skinny jean wearing, myspace promoting indie band. Love it or hate it but never question its influence and impact on music. Expand
  15. Sep 7, 2010
    9
    The Strokes may not have been able to really follow up this wonderful debut, but thats not a terrible thing. Ensuing efforts have been nice but inferior; Is This It is where the boys could do no wrong.
  16. Sep 16, 2010
    10
    my most favorite album of all time. solid from start to finish, one of the best albums to come out of the aughts. absolutely perfect, even in it's imperfections.
  17. Feb 23, 2013
    9
    The Strokes first album Is This It is like something out of the rock heavens. Just clocking in at a little over half an hour, the songs are catchy and show us what a great and talented band this is. Julian Casablanca is such a hip, cool guy. And his voice is simply amazing. All In All, Is This It is a wonderful album that needs to be heard several times. A-
  18. Feb 23, 2011
    10
    I fell in love with this album after the first listen. Amazing vocals, tight song structure, amazing guitar and a chugging back beat; it's almost perfect. The strokes managed to bring back the groove, feeling and melody of 70's rock back to the 21st century. The strokes brought that rawness and soul into music, something that seems to be lacking in most music today. Not only that, theyI fell in love with this album after the first listen. Amazing vocals, tight song structure, amazing guitar and a chugging back beat; it's almost perfect. The strokes managed to bring back the groove, feeling and melody of 70's rock back to the 21st century. The strokes brought that rawness and soul into music, something that seems to be lacking in most music today. Not only that, they managed to jump start a whole new rock revival in the process, influencing countless bands. A simply essential and classic record. Expand
  19. Mar 26, 2011
    10
    The only bad thing that could possibly be said about this album is that it's fairly formulaic, with the same verse-bridge-chorus-verse-bridge-chorus-bridge-chorus etc for most of the songs.
    But that doesn't stop them being great songs on a great album. There's no filler here.
    The definitive indie rock album
  20. Mar 30, 2011
    10
    This is one of the MUST HAVE albums of the 00s. Too bad their latest albums isn't kicking like this. I hate the fact I have to type 150 characters right now.
  21. Apr 6, 2011
    10
    Fantastic. Each song makes me happy. One of the best albums of the past decade (perhaps the best) and one of the 500 best albums in the history of music.
  22. Apr 23, 2011
    10
    Is This It, along with Origin of Symmetry (Muse), and American Idiot (Green Day) are for me, the 3 biggest rock albums of the 00's, although they come from different ends of the rock spectrum they all share a resemblance in how they changed the genre, is this it is not a perfect album, it just has no flaws.
  23. May 5, 2011
    10
    One of my all time favorite albums and one of the reasons for my giant appreciation and fascination for music. Its sheer simplicity and charismatic take on rock just astonishes me. Compelling and fun lyrics, fantastic composition, great production and it truly feels like it's an album that time traveled from the 1970's.
  24. May 26, 2011
    10
    The Strokes first album starts off with a bang with the song that shares the name with the album title, "Is This It?". After that, every song stays consistent with there signature poppy, fun, catchy Strokes sound that never ceases to amaze. This album definitetly lives up to its hype and will be a classic for ages to come with hit singles, "Last Night", "Someday", "Hard To Explain" andThe Strokes first album starts off with a bang with the song that shares the name with the album title, "Is This It?". After that, every song stays consistent with there signature poppy, fun, catchy Strokes sound that never ceases to amaze. This album definitetly lives up to its hype and will be a classic for ages to come with hit singles, "Last Night", "Someday", "Hard To Explain" and "The Modern Age". Two thumbs up! Expand
  25. Jun 12, 2011
    10
    Without a doubt, probably the best album of the decade. In one word : flawless. Simple and complex at the same time, only the Strokes can do this. Unforgettable lyrics and melodies.
  26. Jun 29, 2011
    10
    This album is the greatest Rock album ever produced. Every song has an a amazing guitar riff, powerful bass lines, and the singer Julian Casablancas has the best voice I have heard in a long time.
  27. Jul 13, 2011
    10
    Yes, The Strokes are impressive and superb. Great quality rock is here, the voice is outstanding . Marked the history and changed and improved the classic genre .
  28. Aug 9, 2011
    10
    Forgetting all the hype, Jules, Nikolai, Fab, Albert and Nick did start a new age in rock. Every Indy band of the past decade can owe their success to this album. 11 simple short songs. All pure garage rock. This album is incredible
  29. Nov 6, 2011
    10
    A fantastic album. This is a good enjoyable rock album, the best of The Strokes. It's not completely groundbreaking, but listening to this album is well worth it, from the opening track "Is This It", to the ending track "Take It Or Leave It", you will not be disappointed, unless you think The Strokes are some sort of legends.
  30. Nov 15, 2011
    10
    AMAZING! That's really all I can call this album. Every song is worth multiple listens. The highlights of this album are definitely the title song, "The Modern Age", "Barely Legal", "Alone, Together", "Last Nite" "New York City Cops", "When It Started", and "Take it or Leave it." Dedicate an hour or two to this album, and it will be pure bliss.
  31. Jan 30, 2012
    10
    Awesome album and a must any for any music fan.
    Favorite tracks: Hard to Explain, someday, trying your luck, the modern age, last nite.
    Also, its a shame new york city cops had to be removed from the US release, although WHEN IT STARTED is a decent track, NYC is much more entertaining.
  32. Feb 7, 2012
    10
    Love this album, so catchy, one of the best rock albums ever but that's what it is, a rock album, an album about youth and they have captured that essence incredibly.
  33. Sep 26, 2017
    9
    Classic debut album from a band that had the world in the palm of their hand for a brief moment. One of the first great albums of the 21st century and not a weak track in sight. Perhaps not enough classic tracks to warrant a 10 but a very definite 9, pushing towards a 10. The ultimate test of album is that of time and it still sounds great, even a little bit better, when you listen to itClassic debut album from a band that had the world in the palm of their hand for a brief moment. One of the first great albums of the 21st century and not a weak track in sight. Perhaps not enough classic tracks to warrant a 10 but a very definite 9, pushing towards a 10. The ultimate test of album is that of time and it still sounds great, even a little bit better, when you listen to it now. Raw, wild and vibrant. The only negative attached to "Is This It" for me is that it's a pity that The Strokes never truly followed up on their inital promise. "Hard to Explain" is still one of my favourite songs but the swagger on this album is incredible. Some of the best guitar intro's you'll come across. Expand
  34. Oct 30, 2012
    10
    The album is indeed a great raw alternative rock experience. There are no weak tracks well, maybe, Trying Your Luck, for it is my least favorite but it is still a solid good album. I really like the rhythm of the guitar and the charisma the band gives. The lyrics are simply about observations in their lives but still are great because it is written well into the songs.
  35. Feb 28, 2013
    9
    Obviously the classic Strokes album, the quality of sounds are very similar to The Velvet Underground, and has this nocturnal feeling of partying and a new band going out, thats the revival spirit of the band, and that is why everybody gone insane with this band in the early 2000's, the music was in this void and it was really something new to put on the radio, back in the days
    Sorry bad english
  36. Apr 7, 2013
    10
    "Is This It?" is without a doubt one of the most influential records of the last decade, and is outstanding from beginning to end. Forget any preconceived notion you have of The Strokes and ignore the hype many people think of when listening to them. What you're left with is 36 minutes of pure, laid-back rock. Despite the nonchalance, exemplified by the coarse garage rock sound and Julian"Is This It?" is without a doubt one of the most influential records of the last decade, and is outstanding from beginning to end. Forget any preconceived notion you have of The Strokes and ignore the hype many people think of when listening to them. What you're left with is 36 minutes of pure, laid-back rock. Despite the nonchalance, exemplified by the coarse garage rock sound and Julian Casablancas' easy going voice, the album actually displays a great deal of depth, and not just "catchiness". Each of the five members' significant contributions can easily be identified in every song; the sounds just all mesh together so well that they sound simple, and the album overall sounds homogeneous. Fabrizio's drums set a clear tone for each song and pack more emotion than one would expect (see "Hard to Explain" or "Trying Your Luck"). The rhythm is the job of Nikolai Fraiture, who holds the band together out of the limelight. Albert Hammond Jr. and Nick Valensi work together to produce intensely refreshing guitar riffs; their solos create tension only to resolve it moments later in an apprehensively satisfying manner. Finally, Julian Casablancas leads the band with indifferent yet confident vocals, which make the album so much more approachable. He sings mainly of relationships, though the lyrics don't mean that much. One song even seems to be about a fictitious drug from Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World." Ultimately, it's an album that everyone should hear, and is easily one of the greatest of all time. Expand
  37. Nov 2, 2013
    8
    [8.9] Simple, yet perfectly fluent instruments, strong and smooth vocals, and a certain sleekness possessed by no other band, The Strokes have one of, if not the most powerful and consistently great debuts. However much it can be compared to other artists, no other artist that may have influenced The Strokes can perfect nearly every single element of their music like they do. For what it's[8.9] Simple, yet perfectly fluent instruments, strong and smooth vocals, and a certain sleekness possessed by no other band, The Strokes have one of, if not the most powerful and consistently great debuts. However much it can be compared to other artists, no other artist that may have influenced The Strokes can perfect nearly every single element of their music like they do. For what it's worth, Is This It is really freaking good. Expand
  38. Oct 7, 2013
    10
    "Is This It?" is any bands dream debut album. This album is flawless, bringing in a new style of indie/alt rock that's still easily recognizable. This album truly reestablished the rock genre, and every song is as catchy and tasty as the next. The Strokes debut album is a landmark.
  39. Dec 8, 2013
    10
    Just spectacular. One of the best albums of the 21st century, if not ever. Every song is brilliant in its own way and all are similar, so it is a great album but not too similar so all the songs sound the same. The only let down is that The Strokes could not keep up this genius into their other albums. Easiest 10/10 I'll ever give.
  40. Mar 16, 2014
    10
    The Strokes' Is This It? is not in common with the other rock albums that defined a decade but that is the beauty of this project as it has changed rock and started a new era in indie rock music. It features great guitar riffs and solos by Albert Hammond Jr. and hardcore lyrics and vocals by Julian Casablancas. The band takes you on an adventure ride with some of their best material like:The Strokes' Is This It? is not in common with the other rock albums that defined a decade but that is the beauty of this project as it has changed rock and started a new era in indie rock music. It features great guitar riffs and solos by Albert Hammond Jr. and hardcore lyrics and vocals by Julian Casablancas. The band takes you on an adventure ride with some of their best material like: "Someday", "Last Night", "The Modern Age" and "Hard To Explain" and due to this album there has been bands like Arctic Monkeys, Franz Ferdinand and The White Stripes trying to develop The Strokes classic style. After listening to Is This It? you will begin to answer the album's title with Is There More? Expand
  41. May 22, 2014
    10
    Great Album, this is the first strokes album that I listened to and was impressed, especially with Julian's passionate gritty vocals. each track has a catchy chorus to it, the whole band came through with something deferent to add to this album, I'm really liking the guitar on the first track (is this it) with Julian's slow flowing vocals and a simple catchy beat it works out well . AndGreat Album, this is the first strokes album that I listened to and was impressed, especially with Julian's passionate gritty vocals. each track has a catchy chorus to it, the whole band came through with something deferent to add to this album, I'm really liking the guitar on the first track (is this it) with Julian's slow flowing vocals and a simple catchy beat it works out well . And the track (someday) with Julian's hard hitting gritty vocals and catchy beat. Many more memorable tracks. Each track on this had substance to it everything flows together well, definitely a album to check out. Expand
  42. Jul 22, 2014
    10
    This album it's maybe the most influential album of the 2000's. It's unforgettable, great and classic. Every song it's a classic on it's own. The best debut album since Oasis' "Definitely Maybe".
  43. Aug 5, 2014
    10
    Is This It? is one of the masterpieces of contemporary music and, together with Interpol's Turn On The Bright Lights, one of the very best records of the 2000's. It's a must have for everyone interested in the music of that decade.
    It's a record driven by guitars, easy punchy drumming, incredibly cool bass lines and moving expressionist vocals. What makes this one a great record is that
    Is This It? is one of the masterpieces of contemporary music and, together with Interpol's Turn On The Bright Lights, one of the very best records of the 2000's. It's a must have for everyone interested in the music of that decade.
    It's a record driven by guitars, easy punchy drumming, incredibly cool bass lines and moving expressionist vocals. What makes this one a great record is that beyond its uniqueness in the production, it has amazing excellent melodies. It gives you emotions.
    An album that redefined rock, an album that you won't forget.
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  44. Sep 29, 2014
    9
    You can't go for The Strokes expecting alternative rock, indie rock, metal or metacore, you just need to expect something, you're going to listen rock, nothing less, nothing more, Is This It? introduced us this superb band, but there was some details missing, maybe a more inuitive refrain, or some more complex lycris (not the cliché romantic lycris).
  45. Nov 17, 2014
    9
    For the first time in forever, I agree completely with Pitchfork. The Strokes "Is This It?" is not a god-like incredible album, and it's not the best album to ever be made. But this album is great, wonderful, fun, and occasionally powerful. It's well built and smooth. Even though every song follows the same formula, every song does offer something different. It's what albums used toFor the first time in forever, I agree completely with Pitchfork. The Strokes "Is This It?" is not a god-like incredible album, and it's not the best album to ever be made. But this album is great, wonderful, fun, and occasionally powerful. It's well built and smooth. Even though every song follows the same formula, every song does offer something different. It's what albums used to be, and as an entire experience the album is rock at its best. It's perfectly simple, and unique. I could keep going, but everyone has praised it enough. Just give it a listen, and see if you like it as much as everyone else. Expand
  46. May 15, 2015
    10
    Simply the greatest album of all time. Not one song is a mere filler, not one song is forgettable. Every little tune in this thing is a jem, even the lesser known ones like Soma or When it Started.
  47. Jul 17, 2015
    10
    "Is This It?" to me is the definition of a perfect album. I listen to this collection of songs when I'm down, when I feel elated, when I'm hungover and when I'm drunk. There is simply something magical about Is This It. I have never gotten bored or burnt out, never lost interest in it.

    The lyrics are minimal and effective, accurately mirroring experiences in life that can range from
    "Is This It?" to me is the definition of a perfect album. I listen to this collection of songs when I'm down, when I feel elated, when I'm hungover and when I'm drunk. There is simply something magical about Is This It. I have never gotten bored or burnt out, never lost interest in it.

    The lyrics are minimal and effective, accurately mirroring experiences in life that can range from disappointment to nostalgia. The songs speak in a way that most others cant. You can dance to them, you can sing to them, you can smile and shout to them. This is a wonderful, wonderful album.
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  48. Aug 7, 2015
    10
    Kind of defines Garage rock. So catchy and such a great look at life in the city. The lyrics are clever and ring true on all subjects. Julian Casablancas may not have the best voice, but it was made for this album.
  49. Sep 11, 2015
    10
    Amazing album, every song is 9/10 minimum. "Soma" "Someday" "NYC Cops" "Hard to Explain" are my highlights.

    Julian's voice is very unique with the slight distortion, and everything the strokes do on this album is seemingly so effortless and exquisitely constructed and water tight. It makes you realize how hard it must have been to write this album, all songs sound so simple and it
    Amazing album, every song is 9/10 minimum. "Soma" "Someday" "NYC Cops" "Hard to Explain" are my highlights.

    Julian's voice is very unique with the slight distortion, and everything the strokes do on this album is seemingly so effortless and exquisitely constructed and water tight.

    It makes you realize how hard it must have been to write this album, all songs sound so simple and it makes you wonder why no one had thought of the idea to merge the likes of Velvet Underground, Ramones and Television, into one mainstream, catchy and modernized piece of art before.

    Really is one of the best albums to have ever been made, especially in the era in which it came. Phenomenal.
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  50. Jun 15, 2016
    10
    As an avid fan of bands like the Arctic Monkeys, Kings of Leon, Modest Mouse etc. this is my favourite album of all time. Every song is captivating and should be considered an all time classic.
  51. Jul 16, 2017
    10
    This album changed the way I looked at music.

    I was only five years old when it was released, but its longevity and cultural status has become more and more obvious as time has passed. In 2015, at Hyde Park in London, a chorus of "I just lied to get to your apartment" could be heard from thousands of fans as the band came on to stage. This album is iconic, defining, important and
    This album changed the way I looked at music.

    I was only five years old when it was released, but its longevity and cultural status has become more and more obvious as time has passed. In 2015, at Hyde Park in London, a chorus of "I just lied to get to your apartment" could be heard from thousands of fans as the band came on to stage. This album is iconic, defining, important and fantastic. Whatever you think of The Strokes, and whatever they may have become all these years since, nobody can deny the irresistible quality of this LP.

    It wears its influences on its sleeve, with Television and Velvet Underground being some of the most obvious sounds, but adapts them into concise, fast-paced tracks that feel both modern and historically referential. Julius mutters and grunts through the album over rapid guitar, with minimalist lyrics that never seem pretentious or patronising. It's an album about being young, lost in urban alienation, underwhelmed by post-adolescent life.

    Is This It is easy to lose yourself in, and remains to this day a standout album that is above much of its contemporaries. You can find a home within the songs here and once you do, they never really leave you. An essential album.
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  52. Sep 10, 2017
    10
    The best album of the 2000's no questions asked. The simplistic rock and roll vibe of the whole album really brings nostalgia onto all who listen, even those who weren't old enough to remember when the album was released. Is This It is the best rock album released in the 21st century, and I doubt any band will ever top this phenomenal album.
  53. Sep 12, 2017
    10
    "Is This it" is one of those fantastic albums, that just comes around when your life is changing. The feeling of this album is so hard to describe. It creates excitement, and nostalgia. Each song creates a setting, a mood of urban life. From being in a girl's apartment late at night in "Is This It" or strolling through New York City in "When It Started". "Is This It" is most likely the"Is This it" is one of those fantastic albums, that just comes around when your life is changing. The feeling of this album is so hard to describe. It creates excitement, and nostalgia. Each song creates a setting, a mood of urban life. From being in a girl's apartment late at night in "Is This It" or strolling through New York City in "When It Started". "Is This It" is most likely the best rock album of the 2000's, it created so much. There is no album like "Is This It", many people will try to recreate it or make something like it but it will never work. "Is This It" will remain a nostalgic, melancholy masterpiece. Is This it will always remain my favorite album of all time. Expand
Metascore
91

Universal acclaim - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 26
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 26
  3. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. 100
    Simply put, Strokes have every quality rock'n'roll requires from its finest exponents and Is This It is where they come together.
  2. Able to make the timeworn themes of sex, drugs, and rock & roll and the basic guitars-drum-bass lineup seem new and vital again, the Strokes may or may not be completely arty and calculated, but that doesn't prevent Is This It? from being an exciting, compulsively listenable debut...
  3. 70
    Their album is little more than thirty minutes and eleven versions of the same song. But damn if that one song isn't a good one.