Obsidian - Baths
Obsidian Image
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 37 Ratings

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  • Summary: Darker themes and lyrics dominate the second full-length release for Southern California artist Will Wiesenfeld as Baths.
  • Record Label: Anticon
  • Genre(s): Electronic, Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Club/Dance, Indie Electronic, Post-Rock
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. Jul 23, 2013
    90
    Obsidian makes for a totally immersive plunge and, depending on where you are with your own head when you listen, either a welcome gulp of fresh air in recognition or a chance to hold your breath and dive deeply into life’s darker materials until you have to come back up again.
  2. May 24, 2013
    90
    Obsidian is a gorgeous suite of electronic pop songs that will draw you in and stay with you for days on end, and somehow it sounds like Baths more than Cerulean ever did.
  3. 83
    As an entity, Obsidian is neither more nor less accessible than Cerulean. Ultimately, your mood as a listener--and perhaps the weather--will dictate how often you’ll return to Obsidian‘s bleak and beautiful world.
  4. May 22, 2013
    80
    The music is more intimate this time around, and makes for an infinitely more telling description of who Baths is.
  5. Jul 1, 2013
    70
    Baths’ second album is dark and distressing but ultimately compelling.
  6. May 30, 2013
    70
    The desire to make pop songs has been complementary to the self-referential songwriting Weisenfeld has chosen to do, his choruses able to reinforce disdain, exemplify arousal as it grows and grows, or feel around until the sensation hits.
  7. Jun 4, 2013
    40
    Obsidian is a shallow and unsatisfying exploration of this dark side.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. May 29, 2013
    10
    Wow!!! What a wonderful, dark record. To be honest I didn't expect this to be this good, but it is indeed flawless, might actually be one ofWow!!! What a wonderful, dark record. To be honest I didn't expect this to be this good, but it is indeed flawless, might actually be one of the best albums I heard this year. "No Eyes" is breathtaking. Expand
  2. Jun 6, 2013
    10
    This album is truly a treat. I had high expectations for Wiesenfield as I adored Cerulean. He truly outdoes himself. Obsidian is filled withThis album is truly a treat. I had high expectations for Wiesenfield as I adored Cerulean. He truly outdoes himself. Obsidian is filled with wonderful melodies (see "Ironworks"), off beat feels (see "No Past Lives") and gruesomely personal lyrics ("No Eyes," "Incompatible"). Not only has this album been great as a stand alone masterpiece, but it fits perfectly into music today. It contains universal themes about despair, love, and pain. With hope, this glorious album is not the creative peak for the endlessly inventive 24-year-old, but if it is he has given us the Album of the Year. There is no music like this today. It is original, emotional, dark, twisted, and beautiful. Thank You Mr. Wiesenfield, thank you. Expand
  3. May 29, 2013
    9
    This album is beautifully crafted. It's dark, intimate, poetic and so sincere. There is not a song i don't like on this one, from theThis album is beautifully crafted. It's dark, intimate, poetic and so sincere. There is not a song i don't like on this one, from the electronic piano ballad "ironworks", through the synth-popish "No eyes" (with the immortal line: "It's not a matter of if you mean it, but it is only a matter of come and me") till the glitchy and industrially infused "Earth Death" This album is nearly perfect in my opinion. Gonna place it high in the best albums 2013 list. His a brilliant lyricist, classically trained musician that is making amazing IDM. 9/10. Expand
  4. Jun 2, 2013
    8
    I'm not particularly know Baths' releases and this is my first time listening to any of his works. "Obsidian" is somewhat a dark piece of LP.I'm not particularly know Baths' releases and this is my first time listening to any of his works. "Obsidian" is somewhat a dark piece of LP. It fuses minimal electro music with pieces of what it feels like post music scene and Icelandish music. From Jonsi-like electro piano ballad "Ironworks" to the ominous electrobeat "Worsening", its an LP that apparent on drawing many influence, yet somehow feels darkly original. Definitely worth tons of spin. Highlight tracks: Miasma Sky, Worsening, Ironworks, Inter. Expand
  5. Jun 21, 2013
    7
    Bath’s (technically) third effort, Obsidian, grants listeners with a rare vantage point to witness the growth of an artist in both their musicBath’s (technically) third effort, Obsidian, grants listeners with a rare vantage point to witness the growth of an artist in both their music and personal lives. After releasing what is essentially an album of B-sides during a 2011 tour, Will Wiesenfeld, the mind and man behind Baths, has graced us with the supremely dark and intrinsically real album the product of time spent penning while notably ill. You can probably take a hint from the album cover which features what appears to be a coal miner holding another, in grief.

    In this release, we see a stray from the more poppy glitch beats of Cerulean, and venture into darkness filled with wandering piano notes, and a combination of synthesized and actual percussion instruments this evolution was as largely brought about because of Wiesenfeld’s desire to play with a full band, as it was because of his mental or emotional state during sickness. It’s evident from the very first track, “Worsening.” The lyrics begin, whispered, “Birth was like a fat black tongue Dripping tar and dung and dye Slowly into my eyes I might walk upright But then again I still might try to die…” The refrain is just as unsettling, with Wiesenfeld building to a wail, “Where is God when you hate him most When the mouths in the Earth come to bite at my robes Hell that sits below, of you would do well to bellow At the cold, the lifeless, the worsening souls.” The sounds are fleeting, and the listener feels a sense of despair, but somehow is proud of it. It’s an odd journey listening to this song, to be sure, and I’d say that’s a pretty apt description for the following 9 songs as well.

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  6. Jul 12, 2013
    7
    I buy a good percentage of what anticon puts out, but I found this a little bland and "pretty" by comparison to other label favorites likeI buy a good percentage of what anticon puts out, but I found this a little bland and "pretty" by comparison to other label favorites like Doseone and Serengeti. I suppose it's well-made, but it's just not for me. 7 because I like it but it didn't blow me out of the water. Expand
  7. Aug 24, 2013
    4
    Unsuccessful attempt at making a emotionally 'darker' electronic album. Everything sounds out-dated and uninteresting; for god's sake itUnsuccessful attempt at making a emotionally 'darker' electronic album. Everything sounds out-dated and uninteresting; for god's sake it sounds like he literally rips off Nine Inch Nails on a track or two.

    Mind you, I was blown away by the eclectic adventures into sound on Cerulean, but Baths really dropped the ball on this album. Not to mention the sound quality is a bit grating overall, the mastering just doesn't sound right! I've attempted to listen to this album in my car, on headphones, on my turntable hi-fi system at home and after the first 3 tracks I find it hard to continue listening.

    A enormous let down overall. Sad day.
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See all 10 User Reviews