Universal acclaim - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 25
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 25
  3. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. Though club-phobic listeners may find it difficult placing Skinner as just the latest dot along a line connecting quintessentially British musicians/humorists/social critics Nöel Coward, the Kinks, Ian Dury, the Jam, the Specials, and Happy Mondays, Original Pirate Material is a rare garage album: that is, one with a shelf life beyond six months.
  2. Original Pirate Material, to put it plainly, is the most vivid evocation of life as a young person in the UK since Blur's Parklife, and yes, even The Clash's first album.
  3. 100
    The first record in a long while I've wanted to play again immediately after it's finished. [Album Of The Month, April 2002, p.92]
  4. Heard as a rap album, Original Pirate Material provides a compelling picture of the style wrapping itself around a different milieu. But taken on his own terms, Skinner reaches too deep and true to sound like anything but a remarkable talent in any genre.
  5. By adding grit and gutter-savvy humor, Skinner also takes U.K. garage to a new level, making for the year's most striking debut.
  6. Like many great albums, "Original Pirate Material" wasn't meant to be adored in an instant, so don't let your first impressions fool you. This cat's the real deal.
  7. What 'Original Pirate Material' makes abundantly clear though, is that - whilst Skinner may not be at the very cutting edge of Garage's club soundtrack - he's a man blessed with an astonishing aptitude for pop and a mainline into the Zeitgeist.
  8. Throughout the disc, his attention to detail and melody stretch well beyond his 22 years.
  9. Original Pirate Material is England's first great hip-hop record mostly because it isn't a hip-hop record. It's hard to say exactly what it is.
  10. There's plenty of detail, and feeling too--not just anger, tenderness.
  11. 90
    It's his lyrical earnestness that makes his decidedly British experience so universally appealing. [Nov 2002, p.76]
  12. An album whose scope, diversity, wit and heart make it instantly the best album of 2002.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 185 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Mixed: 0 out of 138
  2. Negative: 10 out of 138
  1. danielw
    Jun 19, 2008
    Brilliant. the music i normally listen to is rock music, but this album is absolutely fantastic.
  2. Oct 22, 2014
    A modern British Classic. Mike Skinner's spoken lyrics encapsulate a side of British culture that a lot of people around the world would beA modern British Classic. Mike Skinner's spoken lyrics encapsulate a side of British culture that a lot of people around the world would be oblivious to. The beats which accompany the lyrics are flawless in places, especially for 'Turn The Page', 'Let's Push Things Forward' and 'Stay Positive'. By creating fusion between hip-hop and garage, delivered with lyrics in a regional accent, Skinner effectively invents his own genre. Not a bad way to introduce yourself to the music industry. Full Review »
  3. BibianeN
    May 16, 2008
    WONDERFUL. Amazingly, surprisingly goog album!