• Record Label: Nonesuch
  • Release Date: Sep 28, 2004
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 439 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 73 out of 439

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  1. Oct 22, 2014
    10
    The last thing these circle-jerky boys will ever care about is music. After properly absorbing this album with nothing else in my mind but the tunes, following the songs wherever they went, like a good, unpretending, non-dense music listener, and getting all that elation into my life, I made the mistake to go look for reviews to see if anyone else understood why this is the greatest popThe last thing these circle-jerky boys will ever care about is music. After properly absorbing this album with nothing else in my mind but the tunes, following the songs wherever they went, like a good, unpretending, non-dense music listener, and getting all that elation into my life, I made the mistake to go look for reviews to see if anyone else understood why this is the greatest pop music album ever made. I'm very stoic and rational about this, it's just there, bros. All the reviews I saw were all about Brian this, acid that, Mike Love that, or they would talk about the damn packaging, the bonus discs, anything but the music. It's bizarre. It's like they're deliberately avoiding to talk about the music. My conspiracy theorist side yells "The powers that be won't let this sh*t fly!" but the truth is that they're simply forgetting to talk about the music. Because they're stupid. These little internet writers, man. These little writers and career "music fans" all have their little agenda that they simply cannot take some time from. All the talk about it being incomplete. It's not all incomplete. A little imagination will take care of that for you. Noise about being disappointed about it coming out now because they'd rather have the mystery. Laughing my ass off. That's like screaming F*ck music! I'll have celebrity drama over it anyday lol! C'mon and think about the pettiness of thinking like that. I read somewhere that this album is "no musical watershed on Sergeant Pepper"... Son... please... Surf's Up alone destroys that whole thing. What's better than Surf's Up or Cabin Essence in there? A Day In The Life? That lazy songwriting that goes nowhere and accomplishes nothing? Is Wonderful not the spiritual better to Lucy In The Sky? What about the structure of Smile man, has anybody taken time to assimilate the structure, the master flow of the beginning with americana, the intensity of those four songs that make the middle section - it is really a deep and introspective trip all by itself, and I personally never heard anything more intense, getting real at Child Is Father of the Man then going ever deeper down on Surf's Up, what is that song emotionally?! - Then Workshop as a little moment to let things breathe as you realize how great it's all been so far (even that is part of the nonstop flow of this album) and then that string of gems: Vegetables being the happiest thing ever, with that sassy and godlike instrumental fade out that literally no one has ever talked about, the badass classical flourish in the Holidays verses, going into that part with the marimbas that is the apex of the childlike quality throughout this piece, (cantata, so many words for it), that heavenly chant at the end that exemplifies how spiritual and holy are actually keywords for this thing, the benediction at the end of Love to Say Dada, loveable even though aggressively incomplete, then the final lightning bolt of divine with Good Vibrations. But oh wowzers, There's a reprise of the opening track right before the last song in Sgt. Pepper's!! Amazeballs!! Full circle you f*cking plebs!! Got to keep sucking John Lennon's ghost dick I guess lmao. I'm a Beatles fan too but relax... Then there's the ones that say Pet Sounds is better than Smile. Look, you might have some history with that album... Maybe it helped you get over a girl that kicked your little heart in the balls or whatever but other than that it's all status quo and hot air and I'ma need y'all to sit down as well. Don't get me wrong, I know it's heavenly too but see, that's just how good Smile is! Either that or Brian and Carl Wilson are wrong and you're right, by all means man, f*ck me in the ass... It's all sad but also very routine; it's almost obvious to anyone with a realistic view of what this world is that something that good will not be embraced by the general populace. This album is extra-world. It's spiritual, it's a notch up, it is Next Level. People in the way they operate, living their lil' lives and all, are simply not gonna get it or even care really. I get it, and I forgive you. You weren't raised right. In another world maybe. But hey, man, you're missing out on the real deal. For quick summary: Holy Grail of Pop, Next level holy vibes, not for the basic. Expand
  2. Apr 9, 2012
    10
    Surf's up is possibly the best song ever made and Smile is possibly one of the best albums ever made/not made. 2nd only to Pet Sounds, Smile in its newest most complete incarnation is ecstasy.
  3. Feb 24, 2012
    10
    Smile was and is a landmark in pop music. Building on his masterful work on Pet Sounds, Brian Wilson creates a complex, moving and bewildering flow of music.
  4. Oct 2, 2011
    10
    Everyone who gave this album a negative review doesn't understand music. In order to really enjoy this music and realize how great it really is, you must be someone who really LISTENS to the music, rather that just hearing it for the mood that it brings. Brian Wilson is one of the most talented artist in the past 50 years and anyone who disagrees with that just is flat out dumb, and thisEveryone who gave this album a negative review doesn't understand music. In order to really enjoy this music and realize how great it really is, you must be someone who really LISTENS to the music, rather that just hearing it for the mood that it brings. Brian Wilson is one of the most talented artist in the past 50 years and anyone who disagrees with that just is flat out dumb, and this album is one of his best. Music these days such as metal, rap, pop, and country etc., that a person may hear on the T.V. or radio are for the dumb, simple minded people such as the people who gave this album a bad review are the people who don't have the time to go find music, but rather flip there remote to MTV. So when deciding to purchase this album, go ahead and do it, don't listen to the dumb as**** who gave this album a bad review because those people are just to stupid to understand this kind of music. Expand
  5. Sep 29, 2011
    9
    This is an incredible album--the arrangements are interesting and tasteful as **** the songs are awesome, and all of the leitmotifs in the music/lyrics make for a very cohesive album that rewards repeated listens. Emphasis on that last bit--this is a much more "dense" album than Pet Sounds or anything else The Beach Boys/Brian Wilson have created. I didn't like this album too much my firstThis is an incredible album--the arrangements are interesting and tasteful as **** the songs are awesome, and all of the leitmotifs in the music/lyrics make for a very cohesive album that rewards repeated listens. Emphasis on that last bit--this is a much more "dense" album than Pet Sounds or anything else The Beach Boys/Brian Wilson have created. I didn't like this album too much my first time through; a few listens later, though, it started to grow on me, and now it's one of my favorite albums of all time. The only reason this doesn't have a 10/10 is because Brian Wilson's voice, while good for his age, detracts a bit from the whole thing. The backing vocalists are all very good, but nothing is better than 60s Beach Boys harmonies. Oh well...in any case, this album is really worth checking out if you aren't put off by having to take some time to "explore" it fully. Expand
  6. Mar 21, 2011
    10
    The greatest album of all time. Without a doubt. Despite being 37 years old, and with Brian's voice not being anywhere near what it used to be... it's is still astonishing. A tapestry of sounds, imagery, words, ideas and spiritual energies. You have to be fairly bright to "get it".. but my god, if you do.
  7. Jan 24, 2011
    10
    It's not for everyone. It never was really. One reason it wasn't released in 1967 is Brian didn't think anyone would understand it. And, just looking at the "user" scores, that hasn't changed. It's music that goes a lot deeper than some people are worth going when listening. I think it's perfect. It took me a couple years, when it first came out, i didn't really listen. I thought itIt's not for everyone. It never was really. One reason it wasn't released in 1967 is Brian didn't think anyone would understand it. And, just looking at the "user" scores, that hasn't changed. It's music that goes a lot deeper than some people are worth going when listening. I think it's perfect. It took me a couple years, when it first came out, i didn't really listen. I thought it was odd. Then I got into Pet Sounds, and i listened to original SMiLE recordings, and it all clicked. It's music that Wilson was doing because that's what he wanted. There's no pretentious in it at all. Pure genuine, amazing, emotional music. We don't get enough anymore, and because of that, not everyone is attuned to this perfection. Also, the coda to "surf's up" might be the most moving thing ever. Expand
  8. FeidoV
    Apr 12, 2010
    9
    A great album.
  9. BrianE
    Mar 26, 2010
    10
    Perfection in Sound
  10. AnthonyL
    Mar 26, 2010
    10
    Best album ever.
  11. HankB
    Mar 2, 2010
    10
    More of a triumph than anyone could have expected. Still, it's a bit tragic that the world didn't get to hear this finished piece in '67 with the original Beach Boys.
  12. KamilK
    Feb 23, 2010
    10
    "SMiLE" is the best album of 00`s & One of the greatest off all time. Definitely.
  13. LuisI
    Feb 10, 2010
    10
    Pop orchestra, brilliant sound, brian wilson and a legendary record.
  14. ChrisL
    Feb 9, 2010
    10
    Pristine.
  15. GlynnM.
    Jan 18, 2010
    10
    Reignited my faith in music and rediscovery of the Beach Boys.
  16. Dri
    Jan 15, 2010
    10
    Classic album of a genius.
  17. RobertB.
    Jan 8, 2010
    10
    I love this album. He makes it all seem so easy. Don't think I have ever listened to a pop record that is this far ahead of the game.
  18. BillW
    Dec 31, 2009
    10
    I think it's the album of the decade. I love it more as the years roll on. I listen to it more now than ever. When I hear people dis it I get confused, how can this music not move you? THis is not even "my kind of music" yet when it's on I am in a semi-meditative state and it's one of the few peices of music that can stop my in my tracks.
  19. ConradC.
    Dec 16, 2009
    10
    Worth every minute of the wait!
  20. MikeA.
    Nov 20, 2009
    10
    A true masterpiece of sound and emotion. It was well worth the wait!
  21. ruggeroruggero
    Nov 16, 2009
    10
    A trip in the inner life of a person and, in the end, the discovery, with GOOD VIBRATIONS, that the most important thing in the life of a person is LOVE. Sgt. Pepper can't compete with SMILE, this one is better than the first one for the musical compositions, the songs, the meanings that it develops and presents. The Beatles were lucky because they didn't search for the A trip in the inner life of a person and, in the end, the discovery, with GOOD VIBRATIONS, that the most important thing in the life of a person is LOVE. Sgt. Pepper can't compete with SMILE, this one is better than the first one for the musical compositions, the songs, the meanings that it develops and presents. The Beatles were lucky because they didn't search for the complexity like Brian in the production of SMILE but Brian wnated the perfection and his label and his bandmates didn't understand. It's a true progressive album. Expand
  22. JamesH.
    Nov 7, 2009
    10
    This is probably my favorite album to turn to at any time. I just love the songs and how they roll from one to the next. I can just hit play on the iPod and have an hour of total indulgence.
  23. TiagoA.
    Sep 18, 2009
    10
    A great album, this have soul and it's brilliant.
  24. ShivaM.
    Aug 25, 2009
    10
    Well worth the wait. It is definitely one of the best albums of the decade. Anyone not affected by this piece of art is probably just a 20 year old idiot with no taste at all.
  25. DavidH.
    Jul 27, 2009
    10
    A perfect composition.
  26. JoeS.
    Jul 18, 2009
    10
    'Tis very good, yeah!
  27. SethG.
    Jul 13, 2009
    10
    I've listened to this album so much. At least once a week, sometimes much more. It's so good!
  28. ToddS
    May 9, 2009
    10
    Absolute perfection!
  29. KimM
    May 2, 2009
    9
    Simply superb.
  30. patf.
    Jan 30, 2009
    10
    Best thing i have heard in years! surfs up, h&v, cabinessence the list of great songs is very impressive.
  31. ChrisS
    Jan 12, 2009
    10
    It's tough to figure out which i'm rating here, this album, or the music. Cause i have a bootleg that follows exactly what this release did with pretty much the same arrangements. and not surprisingly, i like that one better. His voice is amazing, and there's something about those old recordings that sound brilliant. The music is obviously great now, but i'm so happy It's tough to figure out which i'm rating here, this album, or the music. Cause i have a bootleg that follows exactly what this release did with pretty much the same arrangements. and not surprisingly, i like that one better. His voice is amazing, and there's something about those old recordings that sound brilliant. The music is obviously great now, but i'm so happy this got a release. i'm sure Brian feels so much better, he deserves all the accolades he gets. it isn't Pet Sounds (nothing is in my opinion). but SMiLE is a beautiful. and a triumph. Expand
  32. peter
    Jan 6, 2009
    10
    Beautiful and haunting. I cant imagine how anyone could walk away from this unchanged.
  33. KjellB
    Nov 13, 2008
    10
    At first I was like Brian... what is this? I listened to the album once in 2004, then in 2006, I found it buried in my collection. It wasn't until about the fourth listen when it hit me! This album is one of the best albums of all time. In this day and age of "cookie cutter" music peoples ears have become def to great music and I could of been one of those people. Brian Wilson's At first I was like Brian... what is this? I listened to the album once in 2004, then in 2006, I found it buried in my collection. It wasn't until about the fourth listen when it hit me! This album is one of the best albums of all time. In this day and age of "cookie cutter" music peoples ears have become def to great music and I could of been one of those people. Brian Wilson's Smile breaths life into a dying music industry, and i can only imagine what music would sound like if it had been released back in the day. Most people, especially my age (28) wont get it and thats just sad! Expand
  34. CarlP
    Nov 7, 2008
    10
    In 2004 when his 60's peers had long been spent forces creatively, Brian Wilson gave us SMiLE. If anyone tells you they have ever heard a record quite like this before they are lying because there isn't one. The most simple but remarkable achievement of SMiLE is that is it perhaps the first complete rock/pop "album'. It is not a collection of 3 minute songs recorded In 2004 when his 60's peers had long been spent forces creatively, Brian Wilson gave us SMiLE. If anyone tells you they have ever heard a record quite like this before they are lying because there isn't one. The most simple but remarkable achievement of SMiLE is that is it perhaps the first complete rock/pop "album'. It is not a collection of 3 minute songs recorded together where the sum of the parts is exactly the same as the whole. It is one song composed of many sounds and themes of simple but awe-inspiring scale. Melodies and orchestration that Burt Bacharach or Mozart could only dream of combine with the harmonies invented by Brian Wilson and which for nearly half a century have made his songs the most distinctive and inimitable in contemporary music. Not many artists do Beach Boys covers, because, quite simply, the techical skill and God-given voices required make them unmatchable and mean most mortals could only offer a pale parody of the real thing. But if another artist could never get near improving on "I Get Around" or "Fun,Fun, Fun" then SMilLE makes us all feel even more imperfect in comparison. To offer up Sgt Pepper or any of Brian's rivals best lp's to compare is pointless because they are not complete albums but collections of songs. Great though some of these may be, the likes of "When I'm 64" or "With a Little Help from my Friends" are songs that are not improved or given added significance by being juxtaposed on a long-playing record. "Surf's Up", however is truly magifnicent in its context and and "Heroes and Villains" is not the peak, but just the start of a musical journey we will all feel richer for taking, even if we do want to cry at the end SMiLE. The " man too tough to cry" or, for that matter, laugh, at and with this record really is "beyond belief". Some people might even claim that "Lovely RIta" and the songs recorded with it by The Beatles are better than SMiLE. But surely not with a straight face!! Expand
  35. YaronS.
    Oct 6, 2008
    10
    Released in 2004 or 1967 doesnt matter...its simply a great ride through an inavative and genious masterpiece of music. I did'nt know the whole story behind Smile...I just approched it as a regular cd I wanted to listen to. I have to admit that it took me a few listens to really grasp it, because the melodic rythems are very complex and unique - this cd is not for all ears, but I Released in 2004 or 1967 doesnt matter...its simply a great ride through an inavative and genious masterpiece of music. I did'nt know the whole story behind Smile...I just approched it as a regular cd I wanted to listen to. I have to admit that it took me a few listens to really grasp it, because the melodic rythems are very complex and unique - this cd is not for all ears, but I found it very moving!!! Expand
  36. Steve
    Sep 23, 2008
    10
    SMiLE is an album that some will simply never get. The layer of harmonies, the change in tempo, the strange unconventional instruments, it's bound to get 0s from people quick to judge. However, it will be an album that will stand the test of time and technically it already has. This is simply a re-recording of what Brian was working on in 1966-67 and it's still being praised. SMiLE is an album that some will simply never get. The layer of harmonies, the change in tempo, the strange unconventional instruments, it's bound to get 0s from people quick to judge. However, it will be an album that will stand the test of time and technically it already has. This is simply a re-recording of what Brian was working on in 1966-67 and it's still being praised. This album is simply amazing and most certainly deserves a 10. Expand
  37. PhilipD.
    Sep 22, 2008
    10
    I wish these people would stop giving this such low ratings in order to 'lower the average'. I mean, sure, if they think it's worth 6 then fine... but when they say '0' just to 'even things out' ...no. That's simply trying to make as much of a mark as possible on the score, it isn't helping to make a fair judgement. Why should one person's I wish these people would stop giving this such low ratings in order to 'lower the average'. I mean, sure, if they think it's worth 6 then fine... but when they say '0' just to 'even things out' ...no. That's simply trying to make as much of a mark as possible on the score, it isn't helping to make a fair judgement. Why should one person's 0 influence the score more than 5 peoples 10's if the score is averaging at about 9.7 ? Not fair. Expand
  38. JonathanW.
    Sep 19, 2008
    10
    No originality? Maybe I'll post more later, but for now I'll just listen to "Surf's Up" one more time, i.e. my favorite song.
  39. JonathanF.
    Jun 18, 2008
    10
    Such a beautiful wondrous album so different to pet sounds yet strangely familiar and instant classic in 2004 although i fear it may be released for many year people giving it 0 out of ten im sure would not have if this was released in 1967 and i wish it was as i think pop music today would be a little (if not alot) different.
  40. AndyD.
    Jun 8, 2008
    10
    Truly stunning music. Love it!
  41. MikeL.
    May 31, 2008
    10
    Godhead!
  42. TimothyM.
    May 28, 2008
    10
    The best American album ever.
  43. SameerV.
    May 7, 2008
    10
    This is one of the greatest albums. I think it's up there with pepper. Sure, it probably would sound better if all the beach boys were on it and this was 66', but it's still great. It takes a couple of listens. Keep in mind, most of this was written in 66'. If it came out then, I think people would have appreciated it more.
  44. ThomH.
    Apr 26, 2008
    10
    This is the single most important work of musical art that has ever been produced. Thank you Brian Wilson.
  45. Terry
    Apr 8, 2008
    10
    A masterpiece. Good for you, Brian.
  46. dh
    Feb 20, 2008
    10
    Perfect. Only comparable to the Lonely Hearts Club Band.
  47. AlexT
    Feb 12, 2008
    10
    Quite simply one of the greatest albums I have ever heard. It evokes a feeling of happiness and makes you appreciate the musical genius that is Brian Wilson. The arrangements, harmonies, melodies - everything about this album is perfect. While I can understand why some may find this album to be "childish", it is important to understand that it is not only intentional, but characteristic Quite simply one of the greatest albums I have ever heard. It evokes a feeling of happiness and makes you appreciate the musical genius that is Brian Wilson. The arrangements, harmonies, melodies - everything about this album is perfect. While I can understand why some may find this album to be "childish", it is important to understand that it is not only intentional, but characteristic of this particular genre. Created in a different fashion it would lose much of it's effect. A bonafide pop triumph! Expand
  48. JustinB
    Dec 29, 2007
    10
    Wondrous!
  49. AbrahamR.
    Nov 8, 2007
    9
    It's really a hard to listen album, although it is not so good compared with some albums from the 60's, it's still very good, if someone doesn't like it maybe you should listen to it more times, or maybe just listen to more music, maybe the problem is that you haven't learned how to appreciate it, I had to listen to it 14 times before understanding completely what It's really a hard to listen album, although it is not so good compared with some albums from the 60's, it's still very good, if someone doesn't like it maybe you should listen to it more times, or maybe just listen to more music, maybe the problem is that you haven't learned how to appreciate it, I had to listen to it 14 times before understanding completely what was so wonderful about this album. Expand
  50. MichaelT.
    Nov 3, 2007
    10
    This album more than lives up to its own hype. The only slight dissapointment is I don't think the vocal harmonies are as good as the original Beach Boys whould of been but I think his new group do a stella job anyway.
  51. lonnieM
    Oct 10, 2007
    10
    Smile..... A masterpiece in many ways.... to many ways to put into words.... Listen to the album alone, without distraction, and any negative thoughts of the record will disappear..... I'm just glad I had the experience of Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks seeing this vision through. The record is and always will be ahead of it's time.
  52. LeeC.
    Sep 23, 2007
    10
    i think, this is better than 'pet sounds'.
  53. ScottW.
    Aug 20, 2007
    10
    Now here as an album that should put a smile on your face. Not just because of its fun and catchy songs, but because your hearing what would have been classic Beach Boy tunes. This was a lost album for almost forty years, from one of the best rock bands. Brian Wilson gives us a true classic and a must have.
  54. AlexanderB.
    Aug 6, 2007
    10
    For me Smile is the greatest album of all times! Period.
  55. Sophie
    Jul 31, 2007
    9
    A really wonderful album, with some very slight faults. If only we had the original with us.
  56. JoséLuisS
    Jul 28, 2007
    10
    The best of the best... Brian Wilson is a true genius!!!
  57. PeterD
    Jul 21, 2007
    10
    An American classic. Like psychedelic Gershwin.
  58. liors
    Jul 13, 2007
    10
    it's really wonderful , buy this album if you have listened to "pet sounds" before, buy this album if you are willing to give "smile" a chance to be finished and not stay an inflated myth. do not buy this album only because it got a good rating on metacritic , music is a matter of taste not grades.
  59. DaveM
    Jul 12, 2007
    9
    BRILLIANT!!!!! It took me back twenty years, then forward the same. A true work of art. It definitely left me with "Good Vibrations".
  60. kevink
    Jun 22, 2007
    10
    all of to say is pretty much what the last three people have said except the exact opposite. in the world of pop music brian wilson is god SMiLE is the bible
  61. RoccoS
    Jun 12, 2007
    9
    Everyone who gave it ones and zeroes probably put the cd in their car stereo on the way home from best buy, grimaced, and simply endured the first listen, like I did. They might have even listened a few more times. I've listened to it about 10 times through and I keep discovering more and more. Looking back, all of my favorite music of all time seemed random and inaccessible upon the Everyone who gave it ones and zeroes probably put the cd in their car stereo on the way home from best buy, grimaced, and simply endured the first listen, like I did. They might have even listened a few more times. I've listened to it about 10 times through and I keep discovering more and more. Looking back, all of my favorite music of all time seemed random and inaccessible upon the first few listens, but you have to devote some time to the music to be infinitely rewarded. This album is an absolute joy from beginning to end, the instrumentation is glorious and lush, NONE OF IT IS DIGITAL, and I'm only giving it a 9 because of the horrible misjudgement of changing the "Good Vibrations" lyrics. Expand
  62. EliE
    May 29, 2007
    10
    Any flaws you could point out in Brian's vocals compared to the original tapes are drastically outweighed by the faithful attempt at reconstructing this greatest of lost pop albums.
  63. chirs
    May 25, 2007
    10
    are you people insane? this album is amazing. it's wonderfully weird and genius.
  64. TedG
    May 21, 2007
    10
    What's so impressive about this album is how ahead of it's time it is today, 40 years since it's conception. The Polarized reviews speak to this. The album beautifully details American mass culture, with both ideas deep and adult, as well as childlike and innocent.
  65. SanderV
    Mar 17, 2007
    10
    Altough the original tapes sound warmer, the real winning point for this version is its cohesiveness. I never thought it could be pulled of, but it works and it's brilliant. It's a trip, from beginning to end.
  66. DarylS
    Mar 10, 2007
    9
    Ok I'm 15 and (I'll admit it) very impressionable, I get this album based on metacritic's 97 average with very little previous beach boys experience and absolutely no idea what to expect. I've had only 3 listens so far and it's still growing on me - I'm still not sure what if the rave reviews are all genuine or if many are due to the hype and mythology Ok I'm 15 and (I'll admit it) very impressionable, I get this album based on metacritic's 97 average with very little previous beach boys experience and absolutely no idea what to expect. I've had only 3 listens so far and it's still growing on me - I'm still not sure what if the rave reviews are all genuine or if many are due to the hype and mythology surrounding it but all I can say is like it. I like it a lot. Maybe I don't appreciate it the same way as many other people do and i can't quite understand this being the "greatest album ever" but it is a very good listen and i hope more and more listens will reveal just how good it is to a poor boy whos been forced to grow up with Justin Timberlake and 50 Cent like myself. Expand
  67. Rick
    Feb 19, 2007
    10
    After reading the majority of comments, I have come to this conclusion. The negative reviews are from young dead-eared rap-damaged musically retarded people who wouldnt recognize a good melody if it bit them and collegiate musical zipperheads w/ their heads so far up there own butts they judge music by how complex it may look on a score instead of by their ears,heart and soul! So sad for After reading the majority of comments, I have come to this conclusion. The negative reviews are from young dead-eared rap-damaged musically retarded people who wouldnt recognize a good melody if it bit them and collegiate musical zipperheads w/ their heads so far up there own butts they judge music by how complex it may look on a score instead of by their ears,heart and soul! So sad for you and the future of music and humanity. If you love melody,harmony and muisc as an artform this album is for you! Ignore these sad sad people and SMiLE instead. Expand
  68. Rog
    Feb 12, 2007
    10
    Outstanding music - for any era.
  69. stephj
    Jan 19, 2007
    10
    music does not get better than this. kudos to Brian Wilson. If only there was music of this caliber today.
  70. danh
    Jan 11, 2007
    10
    This album is better than pet sounds. It is amazing but would have been better if the other living beach boys were on it.
  71. KitS
    Jan 5, 2007
    10
    I am an old Beach Boys fan, born in 1952. My wife and I saw Brian Wilson and his band perform this at Warner Theatre, Washington, DC, Oct. of 2004. It was the best concert that either of us had ever attended. Despite the fact that we are two shy white nerds, we were dancing to the Beach Boys tunes they did after Smile was performed. We bought the album Smile and the DVD, listened to it I am an old Beach Boys fan, born in 1952. My wife and I saw Brian Wilson and his band perform this at Warner Theatre, Washington, DC, Oct. of 2004. It was the best concert that either of us had ever attended. Despite the fact that we are two shy white nerds, we were dancing to the Beach Boys tunes they did after Smile was performed. We bought the album Smile and the DVD, listened to it many times. We are silly, nerdy people and both vegetarians. We LOVE the Vega-tables tune. As for power tools and barn yard animal noises, we found this funny and whimsical, comic relief. The composition, the arrangements, the performances, it is all top rate. We find it very positive, spiritual, uplifting, a bright light of inspiration. Smile is lots better than the pop, "house music" and rap garbage that pretentiously poses as "music" these days. Brian Wilson is a master and he and his work deserve some serious respect. Expand
  72. EvaB
    Nov 29, 2006
    10
    The smallness of vision of the touring Beach Boys for rejecting Brian's SMiLE is staggering. The good thing about this album taking so long to be released is that I am now old enough to savor it. I was a small child when the Beach Boys were at their hieght so their music was "standard" to me. I didn't see the inovation in any of it because I was too young and since it was the The smallness of vision of the touring Beach Boys for rejecting Brian's SMiLE is staggering. The good thing about this album taking so long to be released is that I am now old enough to savor it. I was a small child when the Beach Boys were at their hieght so their music was "standard" to me. I didn't see the inovation in any of it because I was too young and since it was the music that I was growing up to there was nothing remarkable about it to me. Listening to SMiLE now makes me want to go back and actually listen to the other Beach Boys music as albums rather than just singles. Wilson and Van Dyke Parks made majic. Expand
  73. ChrisB
    Oct 30, 2006
    10
    The most artistic album of all time. This proves that Brian does not need those coat-tail riding, freeloading Beach Boys. Here is a group of dedicated musicians doing justice to some of the most original American music since Copeland. God Save Brian Wilson!
  74. JackH
    Oct 23, 2006
    10
    Simply the best album since Abbey Road.
  75. Mr.X
    Oct 17, 2006
    10
    So Andy McD must think the crap that those retard rappers and pop artists put out is music. Today's music is such a de-evolution when it comes to musical progress that it makes me sick! It is a good thing I have Brian Wilson's Smile as my medicine. What an excellent album! Great musical and vocal arrangements.If you want to hear real music purchase this album.
  76. AndrewF
    Oct 3, 2006
    10
    One of the top 5 albums of all time. His voice is a little different, but certainly not bad, and the backing band is better musically than the beach boys. The only thing it is missing, is Carl, Mikes, Brian (in his 20s) voices. Only albums ahead of it are Pet Sounds, Revolver, Highway 61, and Sgt. Peppers.
  77. RobertA
    Sep 24, 2006
    10
    So good!
  78. DaleB
    Sep 23, 2006
    10
    When you listen to the arrangments, not just the music, but the vocal arrangments, this album towers above any other piece of pop music I have heard. You really need to watch the DVD concert video to take in all that is going on with this musical materpiece. SMiLE is brilliant! And to think Brian and Van Dyke did this at age 23? Mindboggeling!
  79. JohnL
    Aug 19, 2006
    10
    It took me forever to finally get around to this, and I am absolutely blown away. It is BETTER than the raves. I honestly didn't know what to expect, with all the super hype, and I am just amazed. The last original thing he did that I loved was the self titled 1988 album. It would've been a wonder in 1967 to be certain, but I honestly can't imagine a better version than It took me forever to finally get around to this, and I am absolutely blown away. It is BETTER than the raves. I honestly didn't know what to expect, with all the super hype, and I am just amazed. The last original thing he did that I loved was the self titled 1988 album. It would've been a wonder in 1967 to be certain, but I honestly can't imagine a better version than this one. What a great ending to a great story !!! Expand
  80. MikeLove
    Jul 18, 2006
    10
    Quite simply one of the masterpieces of rock music and only a reaffirmation of Wilson's genius. My favorite dissenting comment is from a poster who claims that musicians and knowledgeable composers would dismiss Brian Wilson as an "average songwriter." This is why such unknowledgeable musicians such as Paul McCartney have called Pet Sounds their favorite album of all time, Neil Young Quite simply one of the masterpieces of rock music and only a reaffirmation of Wilson's genius. My favorite dissenting comment is from a poster who claims that musicians and knowledgeable composers would dismiss Brian Wilson as an "average songwriter." This is why such unknowledgeable musicians such as Paul McCartney have called Pet Sounds their favorite album of all time, Neil Young has admitted to weeping when listening to Wilson's music, Bob Dylan has suggested the donation of Wilson's ear to the Smithsonian and Pete Townshend has "liberally" applied the term "genius" to Brian. Oh yes, and for those schooled in musical theory, Leonard Bernstein, the former famed composer and conducter of the New York Philharmonic spotlighted Wilson on a 1966 TV special performing "Surf's Up" to demonstrate to adults the artistry that was occuring in popular music at the time. By the time Brian Wilson was 24, he had secured his legacy by penning the majority of the Beach Boys hits as well as Pet Sounds and this, Smile. What did your so called "above-average" songwriter accomplish between 18 and 24? His music may not necessarily be your cup of tea, but please do not display such ignorance and belittle the man's accomplishments. Expand
  81. RaleighR
    Jun 28, 2006
    9
    Brian Wilson is elevated to new highs with SMiLE. Though one can only dream what this time traveled masterpiece could have inspired if originally released as a response to Sgt. Pepper. In the 60's the hype that surrounded the album was that it was to be 'a teenage symphony to God'. In 2004 does it still hold up to what teenager feel today? All n all great album, good for Brian Wilson is elevated to new highs with SMiLE. Though one can only dream what this time traveled masterpiece could have inspired if originally released as a response to Sgt. Pepper. In the 60's the hype that surrounded the album was that it was to be 'a teenage symphony to God'. In 2004 does it still hold up to what teenager feel today? All n all great album, good for Brian to get it accomplished. Expand
  82. IainS
    Jun 23, 2006
    10
    Saw this track by track in 2004, had the experience of Pet Sounds before that TWICE; Brian Wilson is THE living pop genius. If you can't appreciate the genius of Pet Sounds, Smile or Brian Wilson then there really is no hope for you :)
  83. MeatMuffin
    Jun 10, 2006
    10
    The people who are giving this album a 10 seem to be generally smarter than the ones who are giving it lower scores. Just read the reviews below this one.
  84. DavidC
    Jun 1, 2006
    10
    i understand why some people might not like it. It is a little nebulous and silly, but it appeals and satisfies every nerve ending in the comprehensional area of my brain. i don't know if i've ever been so memsmerized by a piece of music before. I'm not going to proclaim it the best album ever, not in my interest, and i think a lot of people get consumed by the mythology i understand why some people might not like it. It is a little nebulous and silly, but it appeals and satisfies every nerve ending in the comprehensional area of my brain. i don't know if i've ever been so memsmerized by a piece of music before. I'm not going to proclaim it the best album ever, not in my interest, and i think a lot of people get consumed by the mythology behind the album, and that may enhance the overall impression of the music in some strange sensory aesthetic, but without the legend withstanding, it is still and inticing piece of work. Expand
  85. PaulW
    May 19, 2006
    10
    With Pet Sounds, I think Brian Wilson already established that he is one of the very top musical minds who ever walked this earth- I mean, listen to 'Don't talk (put your head on my shoulder' and 'Let's go away for a while'- it's way above Lennon and McCartney. 'Smile' is too good for this world, its ideas and execution so quirky and With Pet Sounds, I think Brian Wilson already established that he is one of the very top musical minds who ever walked this earth- I mean, listen to 'Don't talk (put your head on my shoulder' and 'Let's go away for a while'- it's way above Lennon and McCartney. 'Smile' is too good for this world, its ideas and execution so quirky and accomplished (the old West, a Victorian childhood, the earth, fire, water elements) that it will probably always be a 'cult' rather than popular classic. Make no mistake, think of the most famous composers you can think of in history and Brian Wilson's musical mind will be sharper. It's an insult to him to compare his compostional and production genius with The Beatles. Expand
  86. SmittyP
    Apr 19, 2006
    10
    The world is a much better place with the release of this album. Our and future generations should be eternally thankful to Darian and the band for helping push Brian over this hump. A true masterpiece on par with Gershwin. I have nothing but sympathy for those who are unable to truly appreciate the depth, complexity and innovation of this album.
  87. cliftonb
    Apr 3, 2006
    10
    To all of you that rated the album low here is a suggestion. Take a msic class so you may possibly begin to wrap your brain around the beautiful and complex work on this album. Why do the critics like it? Because its damn good!I honestly feel bad for those of you who don't get it. You can say what do the critics know but the awnser is this a whole lot more than us especially those of To all of you that rated the album low here is a suggestion. Take a msic class so you may possibly begin to wrap your brain around the beautiful and complex work on this album. Why do the critics like it? Because its damn good!I honestly feel bad for those of you who don't get it. You can say what do the critics know but the awnser is this a whole lot more than us especially those of you whom have never studied music. if they dont convince you remember that Leonard Bernstien one of the greatest american composers singles out material from this album to show the world that the future of music was not completely lost. Expand
  88. SeamusS
    Mar 30, 2006
    10
    Okay Okay, So everyone here likes to disagree for the sake of being different eh? That's what I'm getting. First of all Drew M Get a life your self. It's an album of love, relativly harmless. Though it may have gone over your head, I'll just pitty you and forget about it instead of finding out what you like and rating it with a 0 after never listening to it. The album Okay Okay, So everyone here likes to disagree for the sake of being different eh? That's what I'm getting. First of all Drew M Get a life your self. It's an album of love, relativly harmless. Though it may have gone over your head, I'll just pitty you and forget about it instead of finding out what you like and rating it with a 0 after never listening to it. The album is a masterpiece in and out of the context of it's creation. It was a labor of love that needs to be looked at. From the first notes, the harmonies and complex sonic beauty that is Brian Wilson filles the air around you. At the same time, it captures themes of innocnece which, when reflected upon by many, can seem childish and even stupid. Those who reflect it as that are often bitter for it going over their heads or them taking it too seriously. I cant ramble any more because it'll just be more hot air. It's a fucking masterpiece I really have no time for those who are so bitter Expand
  89. mike
    Jan 23, 2006
    10
    brian wilson is god
  90. matthewk
    Jan 7, 2006
    10
    The greatest music i have ever heard !
  91. karma
    Jan 6, 2006
    10
    if i had to pick just one album to take with me to a desert island, this would be it.
  92. LeoS
    Jan 2, 2006
    10
    Simply the greatest album ever released
  93. Suzan
    Dec 16, 2005
    10
    Melodic, masterly crafted, way ahead of its time for the late 60's, simply smile-worthy!!
  94. ZapR
    Dec 13, 2005
    10
    Simply the greatest album ever released -- it transcends pop music to create something both new and old -- part Americana, part whimsical escapism, part pure pop, part symphony. The lyrics are both non-sensical and lucid, and Wilson's compositions are breathtakingly, beautiful, such as "Wonderful." This is music to make us smile.
  95. JMoskal
    Nov 25, 2005
    10
    Couldn't have been better
  96. davek
    Nov 16, 2005
    9
    I have been waiting for this along time ..I just wish it was done by the beach boys of the 60's
  97. JohnG
    Nov 7, 2005
    9
    As close to perfection as is humanly possible.
  98. Thiscdisgreat
    Oct 21, 2005
    10
    Have another listen folks, although this music is not for everyone, there is no denying the genius in the writing ,arranging and producing. We are lucky to have this at all.
  99. DriR
    Sep 7, 2005
    10
    Wonderful! Brilliant!
  100. TristramC
    Sep 6, 2005
    9
    This disc is just a tease. As 'wonderful' as it is, it is impossible to enjoy it without wondering how it would have sounded in the late 60s with the same energy and exhuberance Brian and the boys had when they released Pet Sounds. And that is another thing. Even though Mike Love hated it, I want to hear the other Beach Boys on this recording instead of the Starlight Mints (or This disc is just a tease. As 'wonderful' as it is, it is impossible to enjoy it without wondering how it would have sounded in the late 60s with the same energy and exhuberance Brian and the boys had when they released Pet Sounds. And that is another thing. Even though Mike Love hated it, I want to hear the other Beach Boys on this recording instead of the Starlight Mints (or whoever Brians backing band is; I forget to be honest) That said, nothing came close to it regarding Album of the Year. 2004 had its stories; the Arcade Fire and Devendra Banhart being among the best, but not even they could compete with the release of he most anticipated record in pop history and even as a relative success, it blew everything else away. Expand
Metascore
97

Universal acclaim - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 29
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 29
  3. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. Smile is quite simply the greatest triumph in the history of pop music.
  2. Smile's post-adolescent utopia isn't disfigured by Brian's thickened, soured 62-year-old voice. It's ennobled--the material limitations of its sunny artifice and pretentious tomfoolery acknowledged and joyfully engaged.
  3. "Smile" emerges as a beautiful and cohesive work, at times deeply moving, at others oddly whimsical, at still others eerily disturbing but celebratory. [27 Sep 2004]