Ritual

  • Record Label: Geffen
  • Release Date: Jan 18, 2011
Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 24
  2. Negative: 2 out of 24
Buy On
  1. Jan 20, 2011
    60
    There are moments where the mini-pops Joy Division approach hits paydirt, notably on the relentless, single-minded surge of the single, 'Bigger Than Us'. But mostly the trio are at their best when they wriggle free from the colossal shadows they're hiding under.
  2. Jan 18, 2011
    50
    While the songs aren't exactly good per se, they're certainly not hateful. You'd dance to them. Maybe you'd have to be drunk. Maybe you'd have to be in Reflex. But you'd dance to them.
  3. Jan 18, 2011
    40
    A few of the tracks have a moment, usually a chorus, that you might want to play back a few times. But like Editors, taken as an album there's nothing unique, rewarding, or even merely engaging enough to be worthy of another spin.
  4. 60
    In the end, Ritual is not a bad album. But neither is it the album it would like to think it is.
  5. Jan 27, 2011
    50
    The anthemic choruses largely remain but are endlessly unsatisfying and constrained. Given the unmistakeably grittier and less atmospheric qualities of this album it was the right to attempt to temper them; I'm just not so sure they pulled it off.
  6. Jan 18, 2011
    40
    Producer Alan Moulder (Depeche Mode, Interpol) helps them cautiously move into industrial territory, as on Turn The Bells. But if McVeigh's methods irked you before, they only get worse on Ritual.
  7. Jan 31, 2011
    40
    It may be possible to have an intimate relationship with Ritual, but White Lies' love of bombast would seem to mitigate against it.
  8. Jan 18, 2011
    40
    What evades White Lies is the candid charm of his Brit-gloom forebears. The sleek synth tunes are more anthemic this time out, but the lyrics are no less overwrought.
  9. Jan 18, 2011
    50
    Overall, Ritual is too much of the same.
  10. Jan 18, 2011
    50
    Ritual is so grandiose that it rarely has room to breathe.
  11. Jan 18, 2011
    60
    It's a decent set, but one whose pulse remains steady throughout.
  12. Jan 18, 2011
    60
    Every gesture feels like flagging down a passing ship from a barren island. Every emotion registers on the Richter scale. This can be wickedly effective, as many a successful British rock band will attest. And periodically on this album, the stars and planets do align.
  13. Jan 27, 2011
    40
    Most tracks here aim to be an anthem, but none has the requisite melodic clout. It's hard to see them entering the super league on this visit.
  14. Uncut
    Jan 24, 2011
    60
    The trio still favour widescreen grandeur, epic choruses and portentous keyboards, but they've exorcised their Duran Duran and Billy idol tendencies. [Feb 2011, p.105]
User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 31 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. Jan 22, 2011
    8
    Not as good as TLML but definitely not that bad!
    so track by track:
    Is love? - boring from the start but then it shows as one of the album's
    Not as good as TLML but definitely not that bad!
    so track by track:
    Is love? - boring from the start but then it shows as one of the album's highlights
    strangers - catchy but unoriginal and repetitive
    bigger than us - great choice for first single one of better songs
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 19, 2013
    7
    A reasonable album, but not as good as the first album, The album seems to be missing a really decent tune that To Lose My Life had withA reasonable album, but not as good as the first album, The album seems to be missing a really decent tune that To Lose My Life had with Death. Overall though it's not as bad as the critics say. Full Review »
  3. Oct 26, 2011
    10
    Do not listen to the critics. There is a reason this band play sell out shows and this is it. Totally immense. The album starts strong and itDo not listen to the critics. There is a reason this band play sell out shows and this is it. Totally immense. The album starts strong and it ends strong, it just never lets up. A must have. Full Review »