Memory Man - Aqualung
Memory Man Image
Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.3

Universal acclaim- based on 27 Ratings

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  • Summary: London-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Matt Hales returns with a second album following two years of touring in support of his debut 'Strange And Beautiful.'
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Memory Man will be one of the strongest efforts released in 2007.
  2. So while Aqualung may not be doing anything on Memory Man that is wholly different than all of the Coldplays and Rufus Wainwrights of the world, there is a certain down-to-earth charm inherent in Hales that his peers often lack.
  3. 80
    Memory Man comes at you with a hesitant rush, portraying bespectacled, nice Mr. Hales as an improbably suburban Jeff Buckley--no glamour, all passion. [Oct 2007, p.94]
  4. He's an expert at creating mesmerizing, sophisticated pop.
  5. So outstanding is 'Cinderella' that its siblings pale in its shadow. [Sep 2007, p.88]
  6. 60
    Trades Parachutes-era wistfulness for Kid A-style gloom. [Mar 2007, p.88]
  7. 30
    The lightness and clarity that once set Hales apart is here squashed by overwrought arrangements of lesser melodies that replace pop classicism with conventional rock bluster.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 20
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 20
  3. Negative: 1 out of 20
  1. L.Wynn
    Mar 21, 2007
    10
    I'll be honest: I wasn't sure how Matt Hales' second CD released in the US could possibly compare with Aqualung's beautifully crafted debut, Strange and Beautiful, but Memory Man keeps the masterful pop legacy alive. Matt Hales (Aqualung) is consistently compared to other Brit-Rock/Pop bands, but he creates music that is generally much more intricate and layered than many other mainstream "piano rock" bands. This album showcases his many other talents. Not only does Hales utilize digital instrumentation to create unique, wonderful sounds on tracks such as "Pressure Suit" and "Broken Bones," but he also creates delicate arrangements that further add to the power of the music. He also seems to be one of the few artists that pay close attention to the order of the tracks on the CD itself: a mood is created through the ordering of the tracks that is hard to come by on many of the CDs you'll find being released today. So, what exactly is Memory Man? Well, it's a masterfully arranged, beautiful set of songs that add a touch of melancholy and even hope to the listener. Expand
  2. N.Reardon
    Mar 21, 2007
    10
    Worth the long wait
  3. FarhanJ
    Jul 22, 2007
    10
    The greatest 3rd album by any new comer!!!!!!!!
  4. JenniferR
    Mar 23, 2007
    10
    Exactly what you would expect of the master Matt Hales. Another 10 for Aqualung. Memory Man is a masterpiece especially Cinderella, Pressure Suit and Glimmer Expand
  5. IanB
    Apr 24, 2007
    10
    This album has an intensity no other posesses.
  6. MelissaN
    May 2, 2007
    10
    This album is crazy good. Though initially I was a bit turned off by the harder edge....after a few listenings, however, I changed my mind and lets face it....if you go to a show you want to rock a little instead of sitting their crying and after seeing them play Memoryman songs live twice I can say that they ROCK as well as roll!!!! Expand
  7. jkm
    Mar 20, 2007
    2
    ugh.. sorry, but this album is a mess. if your record collection includes five for fighting, john mayer, and keane - you're in for a treat. if you're not a fan of that kind of packaged pop, then stay away from memory man. strange and beautiful at least contained moments of interesting, moody, and creative songwriting... unfortunately, memory man contains nothing but sappy, predictable pop. Expand

See all 20 User Reviews