• Record Label: Sony
  • Release Date: Jul 12, 2005
User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 27 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27

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  1. JohnH
    Jul 20, 2005
    9
    For those who don't like it-I suggest they listen to it again. This is the best album released so far this year. Farrar is back in fine form and the new supporting players sound incredible. Great music and great lyrics=a great album. Welcome back Jay.
  2. casserollmeover
    Jul 14, 2005
    10
    A welcome return with a necessary record for these times. Upon repeated listenings all the nuances of Farrar's vocals (and the band(!)) (Wow). Absolutely worth the wait. Brings back the memory of so many fearless songwriters and bands that came before.
  3. RL
    Jul 16, 2005
    9
    A solid return to form...rocks like no other stuff Farrar has done!!
  4. ThomasS
    Jul 26, 2005
    10
    I am embarrassed for Eric Weisbard after reading his review of Okemah in Blender. Okemah and the Melody of Riot is the album of the year so far. While the album has political overtones, it's much more subtle and, like all great works of art, much more complicated than Weisbard's simpleton interpretation of it.
  5. DJAdequate
    Jul 13, 2005
    9
    Farrar goes back to playing to his strengths. Often sounds like a mildly-countrified version of early REM. This is the best backing band he's had in a long time, and the dual guitar work is great.
  6. Nicholas
    Jul 14, 2005
    10
    This album puts Son Volt back on the map. Jay Farrar is back! This is the best work since Son Volt's 1995 masterpiece Trace...
  7. ArminH
    Jul 16, 2005
    10
    This magnificent album proves that Son Volt IS Jay Farrar, no offense to the fantastic musicianship provided by the reincarnated group. Farrar's creative growth is subtle but nonetheless very evident here. He doesn't shy away from clear messages (Jet Pilot), and here clearly integrates some of his solo experimentation into a band context (Medication and World Waits for You.) The This magnificent album proves that Son Volt IS Jay Farrar, no offense to the fantastic musicianship provided by the reincarnated group. Farrar's creative growth is subtle but nonetheless very evident here. He doesn't shy away from clear messages (Jet Pilot), and here clearly integrates some of his solo experimentation into a band context (Medication and World Waits for You.) The jury is out, but I dare say that Okemah will even surpass Trace as my favorite Son Volt album! Expand
  8. JasonR
    Jul 16, 2005
    9
    This is one of the best albums of the year. It lacks the standout tracks of earlier Son Volt records but it might be the most solid collection of songs that Farrar has put together to date.
  9. JeffT
    Jan 2, 2006
    10
    "Rock and roll around my head alive a kicking" Jay Farrar writes phrases and lyrics that are both simple and layered with complex meaning. Listen to this album three times and you'll be hooked.
  10. RobertS
    Dec 9, 2005
    10
    Great album! Easily Jay's best since Trace. What blows me away as much as this release is that it can be given a negative review!? Rock critics never cease to amaze. Some can give this a bad review and then rave about a collection of bleeps and whistles with lyrics that make absolutely no sense (can you say - Emporer's New Clothes). Omekah is no fraud, its a damn great rock Great album! Easily Jay's best since Trace. What blows me away as much as this release is that it can be given a negative review!? Rock critics never cease to amaze. Some can give this a bad review and then rave about a collection of bleeps and whistles with lyrics that make absolutely no sense (can you say - Emporer's New Clothes). Omekah is no fraud, its a damn great rock album! Boo Blender, boo MOJO! Expand
  11. ChipW
    Jul 13, 2005
    9
    Back to the old school Son Volt wall of sound basics. Finally.
  12. TNelson
    Sep 14, 2005
    10
    Solid. The best record I've heard in years. I'd like to give it an 11!!
  13. jbolton
    Sep 27, 2005
    10
    Jay Farrar is the new Bob Dylan in thought and presentation. Chris Frame is a powerful addition to a truly rocking band. I'm new to Son Volt but count me among the legion of fans.
Metascore
72

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Despite taking few chances thematically or musically, the reincarnated Son Volt delivers a tight, nothing-wasted set.
  2. It's a bracing and welcome return to form for an important artist.
  3. Farrar's perfectly ramshackle voice still delivers his oblique lyrics, but now it's backed by a tighter, revamped lineup. [15 Jul 2005, p.71]