Play - Moby
Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. But though the blues and gospel and more gospel testify not just for song but for body and spirit, they wouldn't shout anywhere near as loud and clear without the mastermind's ministrations--his grooves, his pacing, his textures, his harmonies, sometimes his tunes...
  2. What could've been a condescending gimmick yields some of the year's most haunting, and haunted, music.
  3. Unlike so many other cut-and-paste experiments, this actually sounds like music and not a clever science project.
  4. Moby shows himself back in the groove after a long hiatus, balancing his sublime early sound with the breakbeat techno evolution of the '90s.
  5. 90
    Although it may appear frantic, Play is an eclectic and coherent work where Moby accesses an array of sounds from his milieu of influences.
  6. The most consistently lovely album of his career.
  7. Much of Play sounds like it was beamed directly from planet Sad Guy, but it's far and away Moby's most cohesive and affecting work to date.
  8. In ploughing a unique furrow in pop music, he demands your enjoyment as much as your respect.
  9. Play's inventiveness will restore his reputation as a puck-like, maverick talent.
  10. The ebb and flow of eighteen concise, contrasting cuts writes a story about Moby's beautifully conflicted interior world while giving the outside planet beats and tunes on which to groove.
  11. 80
    It's a well-thought-out, catchy, and complex body-rocker of a record from beginning to end, with only one or two minor missteps.
  12. On his cunningly crafted CD, the restless techno composer cleverly constructs a bridge between electronic dance music and the black Southern styles that form the basis of most American rock and pop.
  13. At the risk of once again alienating fans--as well as purists who may consider this treading on sacred ground--Moby has taken another set of disparate influences and "translated" them into a futuristic language that's all his own.
  14. This time out, Moby manages to establish himself not only as a talented multi-instrumentalist and genre-jumper, but as someone who can write interesting songs in a variety of genres -- a point he's missed in the past.
  15. His most accessible, mature work to date.
  16. A perfect blend of sacred and secular--exactly what Moby's been looking for all along.
  17. Unfortunately, the last third of the CD isn’t nearly as good as the first two-thirds.
  18. Play is a modest, charming little record built on a few simple ideas, and a winner on its own low-key terms: Moby has made the first electronic blues album.
  19. In short, it's fun and functional, yet disposable.
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 49 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 18
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 18
  3. Negative: 3 out of 18
  1. Feb 5, 2013
    10
    I can’t think of anything to say that hasn’t already been said about Moby’s Play album. The one thing that I can say though (and I know it isI can’t think of anything to say that hasn’t already been said about Moby’s Play album. The one thing that I can say though (and I know it is typical) is that it's his best album he has ever made throughout his entire career.

    The music was flawless, the beats are nice and catchy, the samples he used is brilliant, and it has a fantastic pace.

    I love how the first couple of tracks were all fun and throughout the course of the album, it starts to get darker, more meaningful and really emotional.

    Overall, Moby’s Play is a fantastic album. It left a huge impact on the electronic music genre and it certainly had left a huge impact on me for the rest of my life.

    Track Picks: Honey, Porcelain, Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad?, Rushing, Bodyrock, Natural Blues The Sky Is Broken

    DW Rating: 5 out of 5 stars *Album Pick*
    Full Review »
  2. Feb 28, 2012
    8
    Groundbreaking might be a bit OTT, but this album really brought dance and ambience tracks to the mainstream in a major way. It's got a lot ofGroundbreaking might be a bit OTT, but this album really brought dance and ambience tracks to the mainstream in a major way. It's got a lot of great tracks on it, however there are a few tracks that just crawl along and don't really serve any purpose as far as I can hear. Every other track on this seems to have been either features in some film, tv show or advert. Fans of the X files will recognise "The Sky is Broken" and "My Weakness" from some of the later episodes. Natural Blues, Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad and Porcelain and instantly recognisable. Full Review »
  3. AN
    Apr 7, 2007
    8
    A strong CD, with some of the most unique, catchy songs I've ever heard. Still, even with all of the acclaim it's gotten, I doubt A strong CD, with some of the most unique, catchy songs I've ever heard. Still, even with all of the acclaim it's gotten, I doubt anyone would have complained if a couple of the ambient tracks had been replaced with some more of the clever gospel/techno seen at the start (which also contributes to the album's front-loaded issue). Still, the majority of the tracks are strong, as is much of the ambient, and it turns out to be a shining example of experimentation gone right. Full Review »