Melophobia - Cage the Elephant
Melophobia Image
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 47 Ratings

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  • Summary: The third full-length release for the Kentucky rock band was produced by Jay Joyce.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 13
  2. Negative: 1 out of 13
  1. Feb 14, 2014
    80
    Their [stardom] has been a slow rise. The ascent continues apace. [Mar 2014, p.108]
  2. Oct 17, 2013
    80
    Melophobia is a thoroughly modern rock record, where all the past is alive in the present, so if you've ever had affection for any alt-rock sound from the '80s through the 2000s, it's hard not to find something to enjoy here.
  3. Feb 3, 2014
    80
    While the familiar swagger is present and correct both in the Bowie-influenced "Spiderhead" and the crackling "It's Just Forever," these moments are leavened by quieter, more reflective tracks such as "Hypocrite." [Mar 2014, p.72]
  4. Oct 8, 2013
    70
    There's a freaky encounter with a spaceman ("Telescope") and a dance-party rager about a wicked girl ("Black Widow"), but the whole thing vibrates with hopped-up discovery.
  5. Feb 6, 2014
    70
    The result is a compelling exercise in growth.
  6. 70
    Cage the Elephant sound bigger and more polished here, but it’s Shultz’s lyrics that have grown up the most.
  7. Oct 22, 2013
    30
    It’s a confused effort, with the songwriting faults, misguided lyrics, and the foolish sidelining of Cage the Elephant's greatest weapon (Schultz’s voice) torpedoing the vast majority of tracks.

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Feb 13, 2014
    10
    Cage The Elephant always surprises me. On their third studio album they did nothing but surprise me. They showed their range by testing the waters of retro music, horn sections, hard to sing vocals, delicate instrumentation, and beautiful lyrics. Lincoln Parish (lead guitarist) was genius on almost every track, without the little touch of guitar magic Come a little closer wouldn't have been worth it. The Schultz brothers both delivered with a lot of passion, the vocals were soft but raw in a way. the back up guitars were distorted in a very tasteful way. The bassist Daniel was specially impressive in the intro of the song Teeth, and of course the very memorable bass line in Come a little closer. and last but not least the very creative drumming of Jared in the song Hypocrite. over all the album was structured in a perfect way I'd say, whenever you felt you were listening to a very soft and delicate album they threw a funky/aggressive song at you. the best example is after listening to Come a little closer and Telescope, you are in a very calm mood and BAM! they put in It's just forever a very upbeat cleverly placed song. And I found it to be very tasteful of their part to finish such an experimental and intricate album with such a delicate and simple song like Cigarette Daydreams. over all it was a very creative piece of work, that truly pushed Cage the elephant's boundries. Expand
  2. Oct 13, 2013
    10
    Masterpiece, Cage The Elephant's Melophobia is very original and different as well as being oddly familiar, the album feels as if ive just experienced the birth of a families third child that looks very similar to its brothers and parents yet is unique different and original in its own special little way the album as so much variety and so much personality like for example in tracks Like "Spiderhead" to tracks like "Cigarette Daydreams" and "Halo" all have this unique different feeling whether it being the bittersweet hard hitting lyrics to the difference in vocals, drum, bass and percussion, simply felt as if i was listing to something thing new every time, sadly the album does have its faults like the track Teeth which in my opinion drags on for to long yet compared to the track Indiy Kidz from the last record is so much better and a lot more interesting. Overall I Very much enjoyed the new album in fact it is probably the best album i have heard all year, definitely in my top 5, so much more interesting then Queens Of The Stone Ages New Record, 10/10 would bang, (Melophobia is a fear of music, funfact) Expand
  3. Oct 13, 2013
    9
    A very strong third offering from a band who could have so easily faded away into oblivion along with countless other bands similar to them. Strong songwriting keep your attention and bold, scuzzy, manic and at times beautiful sounds compliment the writing. One of the few albums that are not overrated right now. Collapse
  4. Oct 29, 2013
    9
    I came into this album on an air of mild disappointment after Cage The Elephant's previous effort, Thank You Happy Birthday. I was a huge fan of the first album, and I think perhaps the drastic change from their debut to TYHB was a bit overwhelming. I was prepared to enter this album with whatever opinion it required, disregarding any feelings I had for their first two albums. I was not disappointed.
    The songwriting has matured immensely but still has a slightly youthful tone and sound to it. Musically, this is their strongest record, with intoxicating riffs and hooks delivered by Lincoln Parish and Brad Shultz. This is also an amazing album vocally, showing the power Matt Shultz has in his bluesy and melodic voice. All in all, this is definitely my favorite Cage The Elephant album, and definitely a pick for my top ten albums of the year.
    Expand
  5. Feb 13, 2014
    9
    I have been a fan of CtE ever since I heard their ,,Ain't no rest for the wicked" while playing Borderlands. Then fell in love again when I heard Aberdeen in a shop. That was the moment when I checked their discography. I like every song on their first album and almost every one on "Thank you Happy Birthday". But "Melophobia" Is my favourite. It has many more strong points than the previous ones. At first I was like "No, it's not their music" but now I must say that it's more their than ever before. All the songs are musically full and have some nice flavors. Matt's voice is fill of personality. Nothing to add. Expand
  6. Feb 9, 2014
    8
    A very solid album. It's more toned down than the previous two albums and it has a bit more of a psychedelic influence. That makes it very interesting to listen to and nicely varies it from the previous Cage the Elephant sound. Expand
  7. Nov 19, 2013
    5
    Cage the Elephant's self-titled album back in 2008 was a game-changer. It filled some grungy, punkish hole that had been left vacant since I stopped listening to Green Day in Jr. high, and filled it with head-thrashing, gain-filled songs like In One Ear and Ain't No Rest For The Wicked. Thank You Happy Birthday's release with songs like Shake Me Down felt like a compromise of that original sound, and Melophobia is in the same vein. Tracks like Come a Little Closer or Teeth pull you into the album, in search of more high-energy sing alongs, but the album ultimately offers disappointment at every other turn. The tracks in Melophobia are decent compositions in their own right, but the memory of 2008's James Brown makes me wonder if CtE hasn't lived up to their potential. Expand

See all 16 User Reviews