Shadows - Teenage Fanclub
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. If the day is as sun-drenched and relaxed as the songs on Shadows implies, then may it and Teenage Fanclub go on and on.
  2. Shadows completes a remarkable transformation. While no one was looking, Teenage Fanclub went from being rude, laddish pop malcontents with a wicked ironic streak, to subtle, reflective, utterly sincere singer-songwriters.
  3. On Man Made, Teenage Fanclub seemed to be suffering a sort of rock'n'roll midlife crisis. Five years later, Shadows finds them at ease once again.
  4. Shadows, their eighth album, piles the instrumental layers back on without sacrificing any of the Scots' traditional strengths. [July 2010, p. 140]
  5. 80
    Shadows is full of drowsy sweetness and mellow doubt: the sound of a great group ageing gracefully. [Jun 2010, p.89]
  6. 80
    Deep-piling beautiful microorchestration and songs which in the fashion of mature-era Fanclub slowly yet unfailingly insinuate their charms. [June 2010, p. 95]
  7. While the only revolutions here might be the creaky cogs of the Fannies' 20-year career turning nicely, there's little denying they're still worthy of the reverence they effortlessly garner.
  8. Shadows is a touch too twee at times, but more often, it impresses with its understated elegance and classically constructed melodies.
  9. Whereas most of their albums have had at least one or two weak tracks, every tune on Shadows is tight and fully developed. [Spring 2010, p.65]
  10. Shadows illustrates the band's strong points - simple yet effective melodies coupled with sumptuous vocal harmonies courtesy of Blake, McGinley and Love while lyrically scaling a fine line between happy-go-lucky romanticism and solemn melancholy.
  11. 70
    Bless their Glaswegian hearts, they never sound bitter, 15-plus years after their brief alt-rock moment.
  12. The eighth "proper" album from Teenage Fanclub delivers exactly what one expects: gentle, bittersweet guitar pop, which harks back to the 60s without descending into pastiche.
  13. Lacking the hooks and spirit of subversion that framed most of their previous efforts, the songs of Shadows require patience and understanding to reveal oft-hidden strength of voice within.
  14. If the album has a weakness, it's too much sedate, midtempo consistency and not enough power in the power-pop; many tracks blur together, and the production ensures that tasty instrumental moments....Still, the pop landscape is littered with folks who wish they could deliver one or two tracks as good as the dozen found here.
  15. Teenage Fanclub's first album since 2005's Man-Made, coming so soon after the death of Alex Chilton, has the warmth and poignancy of a tribute, even if writing and recording was all wrapped up by then.
  16. 72
    Shadows would do the reclusive southerner [Alex Chilton] proud too, providing a dozen tracks of earnest and intelligent guitar-driven pop music. [Spring/Summer 2010, p.108]
  17. Shadows returns to the lush, meticulously crafted sound of previous albums.
  18. While its recent recordings have reflected a more subdued approach in the studio, band members Norman Blake, Gerard Love and Raymond McGinley never lose their knack for composing concise pop gems.
User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 13 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Nov 10, 2012
    9
    TFC keep the quality high, songwriting and execution-wise on they're latest album. 'When I Still Have Thee' and 'Baby Lee' are two of their best songs, and that's saying a lot. Very strong melodically, and with an excellent flow, this is the kind of album that should be getting more exposure. Full Review »