Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Disparate though its individual elements may seem (and they certainly are), the sum of the parts is remarkably cohesive.
  2. Though their words suggest such weighty topics, the album remains sonically airy. It might get tense, but it's never dense.
  3. Kinsella and his crew finally seem to have found a way of expressing themselves that doesn't feel introverted and exclusive.
  4. While Joan of Arc’s latest is a relative failure as an album when compared to everything else coming out in indie-rock these days (dropping them under .500 in my book), it is a winning effort, relative to the whole of the Joan of Arc/Tim Kinsella catalog.
  5. The balance of unsettleing noise and artistic appreciation wavers perhaps a little too much and, as admirable a band as they are, wrapping your ears around their album unfortunately proves to be a little too much work.
  6. There's a ton of great music on this release, but Kinsella ultimately ruins the focus.
  7. Kinsella’s unrelenting lack of melody, his horribly self-absorbed and nebulous lyrics, and an overall misuse of timing force the rest of the mix into the periphery for a more numbing, frustrating listen.
  8. The album's saving grace is the surrounding music, which almost, but not quite, makes up for Kinsella's constant barrage of tiresome non-sequiturs.
  9. Either the worst or the best thing I've heard all year. [Dec 2004, p.152]
  10. Kinsella carefully enunciates his lyrics to make sure we hear all the clever references he's making, forcing SAT words into musical phrases that stagger under the weight of their pretense.

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