• Record Label: Columbia
  • Release Date: Oct 6, 2009
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Music for Men is a relatively safe album for Gossip's first major release.
  2. Rick Rubin produces; a mixed blessing.
  3. There's nothing really to grab them: too many of the songs seem a little underweight. It may be that 'Heavy Cross' is enough to save the Gossip from indie one-hit-wonderdom, but there's no escaping the fact that Music for Men doesn't do the thing it really needs to.
  4. A spirited return from Beth Ditto and company--but where are the new ideas?
  5. The weak spot, as ever, are lyrics that clasp to cliches without transforming them. So we get a song about a certain four-letter-word, and lines about rain or taking chances. On the other hand, the punchline of 'Men in Love' is pretty great, and Beth’s belting usually subsumes the stock imagery.
  6. Ditto and co. have been miles beyond this for years now, and by turning to a tired sound without bringing any new ideas, they risk losing what made them so unique in the first place.
  7. It's hard to hear Men as anything but a letdown, the sound of a genuinely talented band struggling to take the proverbial next step.
  8. The singer cuts loose only as '8th Wonder' winds down, building to the kind of fury that causes one to wonder what this album could've been with less polish and a lot more Ditto, unfiltered.
  9. It’s a crushingly un-exuberant album, powered by neither anger nor joy, howls of rage nor whoops of exhilaration, not revelling in any particular aspect of the band’s music, nor kicking against any pricks. The lyrics dabble with outsiders and the odd bit of queer imagery, but there’s nothing revelatory, incendiary or revealing.
  10. It wasn't disco-pop and it wasn't chart-fodder, and sadly for them--and their label--attempts to make them so with the help of Rick Rubin has resulted in a record that sounds similar to the last but with the heart ripped out.
  11. In the end, the record seems an ascetic exercise, complete with drumstick count-ins.
  12. 40
    It's surprising how straight down the line this album is. [Jul 2009, p.94]
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Oct 18, 2012
    6
    Indie rock capable for the mass-market - the voice of Beth Ditto is interesting and a couple of bass lines stay in your head. But some songsIndie rock capable for the mass-market - the voice of Beth Ditto is interesting and a couple of bass lines stay in your head. But some songs are also very lame - which leads the album to be only good mean. A longer production time would have helped maybe. Full Review »
  2. Jun 12, 2012
    6
    Gossip got too pop, honestly. Their first albums were more agressive, and they were more dance-punk. The album has some good songs: "DimestoreGossip got too pop, honestly. Their first albums were more agressive, and they were more dance-punk. The album has some good songs: "Dimestore Diamond" and "Heavy Cross" have a stronger grip, and just it. The others don't have the same characteristic which affects the album rhythm. "Standing In The Way Of Control" is way better than this one... Full Review »
  3. Aug 16, 2010
    10
    Someone convinced me to listen to this. I immediately went out and bought the CD.
    Everyone who listened to my copy did exactly the same.
    I
    Someone convinced me to listen to this. I immediately went out and bought the CD.
    Everyone who listened to my copy did exactly the same.
    I still haven't met anyone who doesn't think it's amazing.
    Full Review »