Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. 100
    Rival Dealer is only three tracks long but it’s as rich as many LPs.
  2. The title track kicks things off with a familiar formula, with ghostly vocal samples and static noise building into a beat that kicks off, and from there things start to feel a little less familiar than they have in the past.
  3. 90
    Burial’s success has brought with it imitators, but with this EP he’s outwitted them all by introducing a gloriously widened palate to his music that is both instantly familiar and shockingly unlikely.
  4. Dec 17, 2013
    90
    More so than any of his other releases, Burial seems to have something to say throughout Rival Dealer, and that message helps tie together the record's diverse 28 minutes and give its three tracks the impact of a full-length album.
  5. Dec 17, 2013
    90
    Rival Dealer has some of the most immediate music from the Burial project, but it's worth noting that this is also a noisy, dissonant work.
  6. Dec 17, 2013
    86
    Talk of pretension aside, Rival Dealer is an important piece of work, a genuinely astounding and jaw-dropping release that deserves every pair of ears it can find.
  7. Jan 30, 2014
    80
    Rival Dealer constitutes Burial's boldest statement to date. [Feb 2014, p.44]
  8. 80
    It’s the sound of something--or someone--rumbling to the surface, about to erupt.
  9. Dec 18, 2013
    80
    It moves away from what many a critic will lazily refer to as Burial-esque, but still retains the throbbing heart that's always sat at the centre of his music.
  10. Dec 17, 2013
    80
    They function as compassionate anthems that rally against the wrought iron tempestuousness of youth.
  11. Dec 17, 2013
    80
    Debate will rage indefinitely on its merits, but to my ears Rival Dealer places Burial in a new creative sweet spot.
  12. Dec 17, 2013
    80
    This is easily the producer's most emotional and story-like output.
  13. 80
    Burial’s still dealing in shadow and echo here, but for the first time he’s harnessing them for what sounds a lot like joy.
  14. Dec 17, 2013
    80
    Wintry sonic atmospheres, a motley chorus of voices, and a life-affirming message of salvation--intentionally or not, Burial might have just released the best Christmas album of the year.
  15. Jan 15, 2014
    75
    This more cerebral music is interesting and challenging, but it is missing some of immediacy of his earlier work.
  16. Dec 17, 2013
    70
    Burial's tracks have always sounded sentimental, but it was usually contrasted with caustic backdrops that gave them some bite; on these two tracks ["Hiders" and "Come Down to Us"], it's the missing element.
  17. Dec 17, 2013
    70
    There's a heart beating in Burial’s out-of-body sound, and Rival Dealer plays like an ashy memorial to a beat that lives on.
  18. Dec 17, 2013
    60
    Burial doesn’t step into the spotlight particularly masterfully. For the first time, his rhythmic choices get a bit lost, and some of the cuts to silence are more clumsy than disorienting.
  19. Jan 6, 2014
    50
    Rival Dealer might be an intrepid leap for Burial, but the music is ultimately obscured by his intention to share a positive message through the most glaring of means.
User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 52 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 12
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 12
  3. Negative: 1 out of 12
  1. Jan 8, 2014
    10
    This is what you call a masterpiece of music, seriously. The song "Come Down To Us" actually moved me like no other song ever has moved me before. The best thing about Burials music if you ask me? It get's better each time you hear it. Just be sure to hear it with the best music system you got, because you'll want to hear every little aspect and bass, because only then it reaches its perfection it is intended to have. Full Review »
  2. Dec 17, 2013
    10
    A masterpiece. I'm a huge Burial fan, ever since discovering Untrue in 2007. While I've loved everything he's done, this one has blown my expectations up, and re-set everything I thought I could expect him. Simply a mind-blowing EP. Who even knows where he'll go from here. I for one can't wait to find out. Full Review »
  3. Jul 6, 2014
    2
    Сначала был уродливый Truant, затем и это порождение. Burial совершил большую ошибку, отклоняясь от своего старого стиля - в нем то и была фишка, была самобытность за которую все и любили его звук.
    Нужно больше эмбиента и запитченных голосов. Еще больше.
    Full Review »