• Record Label: Domino
  • Release Date: Feb 25, 2014
Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. 100
    They’ve pulled off possibly the most intelligent, involving and profound record since OK Computer.
  2. Feb 21, 2014
    100
    Their most complete record by a serious stretch, it's a work that laughs, cries, detests, adores and above anything else inspires.
  3. Feb 19, 2014
    95
    On their past albums Wild Beasts have shown us their savage and raw sides, which have been gloriously charming and exciting, but by opening up on Present Tense and revealing their true hearts, their music has ascended to new heights.
  4. Mar 7, 2014
    90
    The way Wild Beasts can’t seem to play a bum note or place a single syllable in the wrong verse, makes Present Tense one of the most quietly exhilarating albums in recent memory, and all the more so for using its evocative power to unsettle and seduce in equal measure.
  5. Mar 3, 2014
    90
    Present Tense possesses a complexity that's not so calculated, focusing on the passage of music rather than layer upon layer of sound. Its 11 synth-drenched tracks are more bare than those on Smother, but they move much more fluidly, their liquiform seduction establishing a contrast with the band's ominous lyrics.
  6. 90
    The result is an LP that feels more in sync with contemporary music than ever before. There are notes here of Oneohtrix Point Never, Clams Casino, and Tim Hecker. Crucially, though, Present Tense roams a landscape which couldn’t have been charted by anyone else.
  7. Feb 18, 2014
    90
    It is an album by a band at the very peak of their powers--one that will make you want to throw your hands up and surrender to its magnificent beauty.
  8. Feb 12, 2014
    90
    For the fourth album in a row, they've moved the goalposts, challenging themselves to apply their whooping idiosyncrasies to a new aesthetic framework. [Mar 2014, p.70]
  9. Feb 12, 2014
    90
    Occasionally the bare-bones arrangements, a virtue in the main, serve to expose minor shortcomings in the songs. But overall, it’s a quibble far outweighed by the thrill afforded by a record that’s as honest and open-hearted as anything this great band have put their names to yet.
  10. 83
    Present Tense may be a less accessible offering from Wild Beasts, but it’s their most human--a mesmeric bundle of contradictions, indignities and pleasures.
  11. Feb 26, 2014
    82
    Lucky for us, there’s no one else like them and on Present Tense, their success has allowed Wild Beasts to be even more like themselves.
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 59 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Feb 25, 2014
    10
    This is almost perfect! I thought it was impossible to make something better than "Smother" (Their previous one) but I) was wrong. This albumThis is almost perfect! I thought it was impossible to make something better than "Smother" (Their previous one) but I) was wrong. This album means a very possitive evolution.

    Will they make anything better for the 5th album? Now the top is high so it's difficult to say!
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 24, 2014
    9
    I know it might be a little premature, but this may be one of the best albums of the year down the line. Although the band changes their styleI know it might be a little premature, but this may be one of the best albums of the year down the line. Although the band changes their style up pretty drastically, with a lot of electronic elements, they still remain the same at the core. Every track is pretty solid for the most part. Only real let down is Nature Boy for me. Overall, the record is a bit more minimal than the previous LP, while guitar and synth melodies seem to be most prominent here. Lots of reverb as well, on the drums and guitar mainly, which gives it a real 80's sound. Pretty haunting vocal melodies as well. Full Review »
  3. Apr 16, 2014
    9
    No matter what your taste may be, you simply can't dislike this album. Wild Beasts have craftily manipulated sound, time, and rhythm to createNo matter what your taste may be, you simply can't dislike this album. Wild Beasts have craftily manipulated sound, time, and rhythm to create the musical equivalent of a Picasso. Present Tense retains the band's signature pensive, occasionally brooding atmosphere, but distinguishes itself from predecessor Smother by overtly emphasizing the emotional drama the record's operatic vocals and longing chords consistently generate. Wild Beasts profess their creative and musical maturity not only through the album's superlative rhythms and lyrics and heightened sense of spatial and self awareness, but also by successfully replicating the organic textures and impressions that made their previous albums such a revelation to listen to. Such inclusions as the trembling and wobbly synthetic instrumentals in "Wanderlust," the dynamic yet humble drumbeats in "A Dog's Life," and the inspiringly emotive vocals in "Sweet Spot," make Present Tense arguably the band's most accessibly organic and expressive album yet.

    FINAL SCORE: 92.5 (almost perfect -----o--------------- perfect)
    Full Review »