User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 42 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 41 out of 42
  2. Negative: 0 out of 42

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  1. Apr 12, 2013
    8
    'Available' and 'Sugar Wife' are two of the best songs of the year. The best National album along with Boxer.
  2. Mar 29, 2012
    8
    The album before their holy trinity of Alligator/Boxer/High Violet. Sad Songs is a good album but my least favourite of The National's 5 records so far but its still very strong. Lyrically it's spot on but occasionally it lacks imagination musically. There are a couple of mid tempo countryish tracks that don't particularly add anything to the record. Although I love The National's slow and mid tempo stuff on other records, here the band sounds better on the more up tempo tracks. That said - these are small complaints and there is a lot more to praise on here than there is to pick at . Murder Me Rachel and Slipping Husband show some of the brilliance that followed on Alligator and the final track "Lucky You" really finishes the album off nicely. Expand
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Plunging into the desperate erotica of their Leonard Cohen-meets-Joy Division world, this Brooklyn quintet sounds both decadent and deprived when brooding about betrayal, lust, even their snappy new outerwear ("Fashion Coat").
  2. The record floats a Leonard Cohen-Robert Smith vibe or two, but references fail this outfit.
  3. To the extent that it falls prey to unnecessary pseudo-sophistication, Sad Songs For Dirty Lovers comes off weak; to the extent that it maintains its own musical niche within the shattered-lover trope, Sad Songs for Dirty Lovers makes the shopworn surprisingly compelling.