Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. It makes for a cool sound that might be too inoffensive at times but which grabs all the right places most of the time.
  2. The first seven tracks are nearly flawless, and the occasional wobble thereafter doesn't mar one of the year's most scintillating debuts.
  3. Although the uniformly sweet pop songs on Kicking the National Habit sound influenced by the likes of the Police, Men at Work, Duran Duran, and the rest of the more commercial side of the early MTV era, the arrangements are more electronic in nature.
  4. Almost everything about 'Kicking The National Habit' is righteously unfashionable.
  5. Believe the hype: The 10-track set is a real treat, rewarding repeated listens with fun, groove-driven tunes.
  6. Grand National's main skill lies in their ability to twin their fine songs to tight electronic productions, striking the perfect midpoint between live organics and cool digital sequencing.
  7. 80
    A stripped-back stroll through the summer of the '80s. [Jun 2004, p.106]
  8. 80
    Touches of ska... and ethereal dream-rock... betray a penchant for late-'70s guitar experimentation, alchemised here by a brilliant pop sheen. [Jul 2004, p.101]
  9. 80
    This is AM pop perfection that doesn't need a stamp of retro-cool to be timeless. [Mar 2005, p.111]
  10. One of the year's most inventive debuts. [Jul 2004, p.114]
  11. 70
    There's a lot of passion and red corpuscles surging just outside the music's clean, primary-colored lines. [Apr 2006, p.112]
  12. Tracks such as "Boner" and "Peanut Dreams," stripped of any excitement, are nothing more than highly polished and easily forgettable songs to ignore at a swanky upstairs club.
  13. This is reggae-inflected rock filtered through Gorillaz-style genre restlessness. [31 Mar 2006, p.65]
  14. There’s one problem, and it’s not insignificant: with the best three songs at positions 1-2-3, there’s only one place to go.

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