Preliminaires - Iggy Pop

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 27
  2. Negative: 1 out of 27
  1. In Preliminaires, the Stooge King has put together a perfect soundtrack for a short, doomy stay in the Hotel Lautréamont.
  2. Only on ‘Nice To Be Dead’ does he veer into heavy guitar territory, but it fits seamlessly into the mix, making for not just his strangest set in years, but also his best.
  3. Forty years after The Stooges' debut album, Iggy Pop is still heading blindly into the unknown. [Jul 2009, p.116]
  4. This may be his best album since 1977's "Lust for Life."
  5. Ragged glories from punk's oddball.
  6. Pop's understated delivery draws even the most skeptical of listeners in, bathing his hushed voice in beds of stark piano and tremolo-washed guitar.
  7. Risky though it may have seen (in terms of both taste and talent), this is a great record.
  8. It’s an album of curveballs, and while not every track finds its zone, it’s still a pleasure to hear Pop turn disgust into inspiration.
  9. It is unusual for sure, but this is the beauty of Preliminaries. [Summer 2009, p.68]
  10. Where "Avenue B" was a pretentious mess, Preliminaires is flawed but significantly more successful.
  11. As always, Pop's lyrics are not something you want to spend too much time focusing on, but separated from the dumb strut of rehashed cock rock, they settle nicely into an eerie landscape of dread and malaise.
  12. After the novelty wears off, the keeper is his typically blunt 'Nice to Be Dead'--"It’s nice to be underground/Free of the ugly sounds of life"--which happens to be the album’s one electric-guitar rocker.
  13. For all its talk of death, this album feels like a rebirth.
  14. Pop has crafted a stylistically variegated and broody meditation on mortality, a soundtrack for the ossuary, a lovely lust for death.
  15. Préliminaires applies an interesting--if not wholly successful--Aznavour twist to Iggy’s latter-day repertoire.
  16. 60
    The album has its moments, but you really couldn't call it the main event. [Jun 2009, p.99]
  17. 60
    At 36 minutes, Preliminaires is slight and covers-heavy, but points to a promising new career phase for Iggy as Detroit’s answer to Serge.
  18. 60
    The results feel tossed-off at times, but Iggy still flashes his charm and humor.
  19. Fans of Iggy Pop would do well to give Preliminaires a spin, since it showcases a side of the artist not readily visible in his other work.
  20. This odd and occasionally lovely concoction might just redeem Iggy from that insurance ignominy.
  21. By being boring on purpose, Iggy ironically proves himself oddly more compelling than on his many past accidents. If it's not an album for the ages so much as for the aged, at least it's one you may want to hold on to a bit and give another shot when you get closer to where Iggy's at himself right now.
  22. Despite some uproariously bad crooning (in both French and English), this isn't always as terrible as it is crazy.
  23. Although Préliminaires has some effective moments, it comes off as an underdeveloped exercise that needs refinement.
  24. Less a jazz album than an eclectic selection, Preliminaires is inconsistent and demonstrates Pop’s reluctance to deviate completely from his safety zone.
  25. This may be a more suitable album for a man of Iggy’s age to put out than his last, but that doesn’t make it a better one. Indeed the idea of an inoffensive Iggy Pop album seems itself almost offensive.
  26. It could have worked, but the dated production style bogs it down.
  27. Iggy sings ballads. In French. With clarinet solos. He also dabbles in Dixieland jazz, spoken word, and chilled electro-lounge music on his 15th solo album. If that sounds hideous, or hilarious, it's actually a little bit of both.

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