Loyalty To Loyalty

  • Record Label: Downtown
  • Release Date: Sep 23, 2008
Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. 60
    Throughout the album, haunted-saloon piano and reverb-choked guitar conjure a murky, wobbly misaligned version of old R&B.
  2. Uncut
    60
    The skeletal bluesy shuffles are easy to follow, but the likes of 'Avalanch In B' suggest a band lyrically happy to keep the unpleasantness in their woodshed under wraps. [Oct 2008, p.81]
  3. More often than not, Loyalty to Loyalty takes a disappointing stumble on it.
  4. Loyalty to Loyalty, an improvement on 2006's filler-heavy debut, is a sincere, if preachy, advertisement for integrity over image.
  5. The loyalty to the exact sound--minus the real hooks--that got Cold War Kids noticed keeps things mostly stagnant.
  6. But ultimately, Loyalty to Loyalty leaves a weird aftertaste, and it's not just because the penultimate 'Relief' tries to prop itself up on Willett's falsetto harangues and stuttering slap-bass, before 'Cryptomnesia' ends the record collapsing into a rumpled heap.
  7. 50
    Relying on sturdy-legged piano chords ('I've Seen Enough'), boogie rock ('Mexican Dogs'), and caffeinated backbeats to boost Willett's narratives, Loyalty to Loyalty is rarely subtle.
  8. Cold War Kids have exploded rather than refined their style here, which too often turns what were formerly strengths into liabilities and turns what were formerly liabilities into, well, even greater liabilities.
  9. Nathan Willett remains a technically proficient singer, with hints of Jeff Buckley, but much like his band's music, his voice is too drearily clean-cut to deliver a true emotional punch.
  10. Q Magazine
    40
    The Californian four-piece's follow-up is less inspired, however, lacking any memorable tunes or winning hoks to distract from Nathan Willett's grating falsetto, and much of the album is heavy going. [Oct 2008, p.141]
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 25 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 13
  2. Negative: 1 out of 13
  1. jeffj
    May 9, 2009
    9
    At first this album struck me as not as catchy and hook-heavy as their previous album but, I like that. A few listens allows the album to At first this album struck me as not as catchy and hook-heavy as their previous album but, I like that. A few listens allows the album to soak into you. Granted, there are a couple low points but, overall, this is an original album among the common cookie cutter albums that are abound. Also, Chris H. can I borrow your dictionary? Does it contain the words "verbose" or "pretentious?" Full Review »
  2. MatthewA.
    Oct 1, 2008
    8
    It took me about a week to get past the production, but once I adjusted, this album has been in my earphones nonstop. It is a different in It took me about a week to get past the production, but once I adjusted, this album has been in my earphones nonstop. It is a different in sound from last album; less sparce, cleaner, less obvious hooks even. But the songwriting is solid, and while I wouldn't classify it as a pop album, the songs have been in my head when I wake every morning. Love it. Full Review »
  3. KevinM.
    Sep 24, 2008
    10
    Attention to lyrics and detail. They bring meaning back to music. Like Robbers and Cowards, a perfect 10 in my book.