SMiLE

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

Generally favorable reviews- based on 460 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 75 out of 460

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  1. DavidP
    Oct 7, 2004
    10
    As an old Beach Boys fan who grew up in the 60's, SMiLE provides an unexpected closure to a part of my psyche. It's like John was not shot, George is still alive, and the Beatles got back together in the 80's and put out another masterpiece. Of course, that fantasy will always leave a hole in my heart but, now, at least, one of the holes in my heart has been filled with joy As an old Beach Boys fan who grew up in the 60's, SMiLE provides an unexpected closure to a part of my psyche. It's like John was not shot, George is still alive, and the Beatles got back together in the 80's and put out another masterpiece. Of course, that fantasy will always leave a hole in my heart but, now, at least, one of the holes in my heart has been filled with joy and a SMiLE. Thank you Brian. Expand
  2. williamf
    Oct 7, 2004
    10
    never was that much of a brain wilson fan, but wow!!!!! this is a classic
  3. JimD
    Oct 8, 2004
    10
    An amazing aural experience. Totally unlike anything else by the Beach Boys in many ways, but the harmonies take you back.
  4. JE
    Oct 9, 2004
    10
    i love it. it's a great album. i think everyone who is digging it is suffering from a little bit of nostalgia, but that's only natural..
  5. JohnS
    Jan 10, 2005
    10
    As a big Beatle fan, I've always been a bit protectionist as far as this album being "better" than Pepper is concerned. I'd heard the released stuff and some of it was indeed impressive. Heroes & Villians, Good Vibrations, Our Prayer, Cabinessence, Wonderful and Surf's Up in particular truly awesome. Now nearly 40 years later and with all these tracks finally slotted As a big Beatle fan, I've always been a bit protectionist as far as this album being "better" than Pepper is concerned. I'd heard the released stuff and some of it was indeed impressive. Heroes & Villians, Good Vibrations, Our Prayer, Cabinessence, Wonderful and Surf's Up in particular truly awesome. Now nearly 40 years later and with all these tracks finally slotted together for the first time on the one album, I'm bound to say its quite simply, sensational. Breathtalingly beautiful in parts. Much as though I hate to admit it, back in 1967 this would probably have dwarfed Pepper. As a piece of art it's infinately more progressive. As piece of music it's certainly better. Maybe not the catchy tunes sure, but this is another level altogether. With pop/rock music having advanced SO much since 1967, its really difficult to appreciate how innovative this would have been back then. The fact that it still stands up in 2004 says everything that needs to be said. Back then it would have blown everyone away although quite possibly wouldn't have sold well- leastways in the States. And you could see why the rest of the Beach Boys were a bit scared of it, deviating as far as it did from their previous winning formula. But with so much music having been released since this was written, its incredible to think that I really could say its still probably the best rock/pop album I've ever heard. I would have loved to have heard the Beach Boy voices on it , even though the vocals here are stunning. As a family they had such a unique blend when they all sang together, which is not replicated here, nor sadly ever will be now. . Expand
  6. AlexanderB.
    Aug 6, 2007
    10
    For me Smile is the greatest album of all times! Period.
  7. 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.
  8. VinceH.
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    I have to agree with ebok on this one. I (like most BB fanatics) have compiled all the old songs, bits, lost tracks, samples, etc. and compiled my own version of Smile in various forms over the years). I really miss Brian's old voice and the singing of the boys in their prime, but this new groups is excellent and Brian still sings wonderfully. The main thing about this new album that I have to agree with ebok on this one. I (like most BB fanatics) have compiled all the old songs, bits, lost tracks, samples, etc. and compiled my own version of Smile in various forms over the years). I really miss Brian's old voice and the singing of the boys in their prime, but this new groups is excellent and Brian still sings wonderfully. The main thing about this new album that will (and should) get all the attention is the production and arrangement. This is hands down the best production of all time, and yes I have heard pretty much every rock/pop album considered a "classic". Brian Wilson is truly the greatest musical mind to emerge from pop music. You know when people call their fav artist a genius and stuff, well Wilson is actually a genius and it shows here (as it always has). This is truly one of the miracles of musical creation and had this album orginally been released after Pet Sounds it would've been considered as the greatest album ever made. Not kidding folks, it's that good. Expand
  9. JensK
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    Forget about 1967, this is a great, great, great record today!
  10. LarryJ
    Oct 6, 2004
    10
    It just keeps getting better with each time I listen to it. I especially love the middle suite of "Childhood" songs -- "Wonderful." If the original BB had been involved in this production, particularly the late-Carl Wilson, it would have rated off the chart. The album and Brian's backstory, in my opinion, serve to reinforce the overall theme of these tracks. I'm happy Brian can SMiLE.
  11. MichaelC
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    The Only thing wrong with this album is Brian's voice, if he had that classic falsetto, it would be perfection. But I'd only drop the album 0.1 of a point for that, so I'd give the album 10 out of 10. L&M
  12. WJFlywheel
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    Good stuff for the Mike Love Fanclub.
  13. JindrichH
    Jan 15, 2005
    10
    Beautiful....
  14. ArielN
    Jan 18, 2005
    10
    Smile Brian, You Did It Again.
  15. MurielB.
    Jan 20, 2005
    10
    Look ! Listen ! Vibrate ! Smile !
  16. jims
    Jan 2, 2005
    10
    Pop symphony, have never heard anything like it
  17. joej
    Jan 4, 2005
    10
    Brilliant!
  18. MartyM
    Jan 7, 2005
    10
    Brilliant. Smile is finally released and I was not disappointed at all. The hype was definitely deserved.
  19. bobbyc
    Jan 7, 2005
    10
    may be the most brilliant "pop" or "rock" album of all time. but those catagories don't even begin to describe its incredible synthesis of traditional american song styles, symphonic bliss & bold, successful avant-garde experimentation. it just has never been done before in this way. it even surpasses its own mythical legend. an astounding achievement, not just for a man who may be the most brilliant "pop" or "rock" album of all time. but those catagories don't even begin to describe its incredible synthesis of traditional american song styles, symphonic bliss & bold, successful avant-garde experimentation. it just has never been done before in this way. it even surpasses its own mythical legend. an astounding achievement, not just for a man who struggles daily from mental illness, but an astounding achievement from anybody at all. he didn't even have to do this. he could have just let the legend live on as the most famous unreleased album of all time & rested on those laurals alone. Expand
  20. stevep
    Apr 12, 2005
    10
    A true Classic ! ! !
  21. ErickC.
    Jun 27, 2005
    10
    I don`t know how some people gave ratings below 9, A "5".....come on, this is a great album, even after 37 years you can listen magic in this music, the kind of album that you want to listen from start to finish( I have, 10 times at least ^_^ ) and nowadays that is something really hard to find, the only people who don`t like this cd is because they like predictible and easy listen music, I don`t know how some people gave ratings below 9, A "5".....come on, this is a great album, even after 37 years you can listen magic in this music, the kind of album that you want to listen from start to finish( I have, 10 times at least ^_^ ) and nowadays that is something really hard to find, the only people who don`t like this cd is because they like predictible and easy listen music, this album surprises you in practically every song, definitely is something really especial and innovative even 37 years later from the original release date. Pet Sounds may be more estructure and "famous" but SMiLE Challenges you, is for a intelligent audience who appreciate original music with great & unexpected twists in the songs. DEFINITELY A WORTHY ALBUM!! HAT`S OFF TO BRIAN WILSON! Expand
  22. DriR
    Sep 7, 2005
    10
    Wonderful! Brilliant!
  23. 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.
  24. Rog
    Feb 12, 2007
    10
    Outstanding music - for any era.
  25. 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.
  26. 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.
  27. Terry
    Apr 8, 2008
    10
    A masterpiece. Good for you, Brian.
  28. 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.
  29. LuisI
    Feb 10, 2010
    10
    Pop orchestra, brilliant sound, brian wilson and a legendary record.
  30. ChrisL
    Feb 9, 2010
    10
    Pristine.
  31. Maryc
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    I never heard anything like this before.
  32. Stevie
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    Surf's Up is the greatest pop song ever created, and is essential listening for any human even slightly considering had this album originally been released when intended, it would've topped Sgt. Pepper's. Get this album immediately!! Even George Martin said that Brian Wilson was the biggest influence on the Beatles post-Rubber Soul and that Pet Sounds was the type of album Surf's Up is the greatest pop song ever created, and is essential listening for any human even slightly considering had this album originally been released when intended, it would've topped Sgt. Pepper's. Get this album immediately!! Even George Martin said that Brian Wilson was the biggest influence on the Beatles post-Rubber Soul and that Pet Sounds was the type of album the Beatles were trying to make. That's praise as high as it goes folks. Expand
  33. GaryE
    Oct 14, 2004
    10
    Now we can see how expendable the rest of the Beach Boys really were. Brian was obviously the brains of the outfit.
  34. AaronS.
    Oct 15, 2004
    10
    Better late than never. This beautiful musical curiosity sounds like nothing else, totally unclassifiable. It sounds as out of place today as it would have back in 1967! Highly recommended to those with adventurous tastes.
  35. StillaKidAtheart
    Oct 15, 2004
    10
    Simply a Masterpiece! I first heard Sgt. Pepper's at the age of 14, and I have the same kind of feeling listening to Smile today...I can't stop listening to it...Thank you, Brian...You reached me.
  36. TazmanianDevil
    Oct 2, 2004
    10
    Can't stop listening... enjoy every moment of this CD
  37. alc
    Oct 2, 2004
    10
    love this album the most!!
  38. GeraldK
    Oct 22, 2004
    10
    True, Pet Sounds has more great songs and none of the Smile songs reach the utter heavenly transcience of say God Only Knows, Caroline No or I Just Wasn't Made for These Times, but this is still clearly the best album of the year and Brian Wilson's greatest solo achievment. I still have a bit of a tendency to like the older version of these songs just a bit more, mainly because True, Pet Sounds has more great songs and none of the Smile songs reach the utter heavenly transcience of say God Only Knows, Caroline No or I Just Wasn't Made for These Times, but this is still clearly the best album of the year and Brian Wilson's greatest solo achievment. I still have a bit of a tendency to like the older version of these songs just a bit more, mainly because it is much clearer to the listener just how far ahead of its time the original was (let's be honest, pop music has caught up with Smile) but had the original album been released in 1967 I think it could have surpassed Sgt. Peppers in overall brilliance and song quality. The structure and composition of these tracks is complete and utter genius. No listener with even the slightest discernable ear can deny Brian is the greatest pop musician ever and his songs will live forever. BTW, it truly does get better the more times you listen to it, and how many albums can you say that abot anyway? Expand
  39. midnightdread
    Dec 2, 2004
    10
    SMiLE delivers while most of the rest get stamped 'address unknown'. Makes Beatles apprentices. Makes negative reviewers on this forum over-compensating sour-full reactionaries and cranky contrarians; reminiscent of those who replaced sixties' epiphanies with recycled rock cliches, derivative and forever boring. Except for Bob Marley & reggae, we've been going SMiLE delivers while most of the rest get stamped 'address unknown'. Makes Beatles apprentices. Makes negative reviewers on this forum over-compensating sour-full reactionaries and cranky contrarians; reminiscent of those who replaced sixties' epiphanies with recycled rock cliches, derivative and forever boring. Except for Bob Marley & reggae, we've been going 'Nowhere Man' fast. PET SOUNDS better? SMiLE is THE album 'where new things might be found', as Brian sang in "I Just Wasn't Made For These Times". Listen up tin-ears and tin-horns. Saddle up to the renaissance (circa late 1966 thru early 1968) that many in this age were lucky enough to live through. Many of us never wanted to "Get Back" or "Do It Again" or "Let It Bleed". Rather than pull back from the precipice Brian Wilson soars. Forward ever. 'Give the past the slip'. Get out of the doldrums & noise of modern life where everyone prostrates themselves at the Altar of Job Security. See (LOOK!) & Hear (LISTEN!) where we were Headed (VIBRATE!) until devolutionary heads & blue meanies prevailed. Here's my review written in the (SMiLE!) spirit: 'Van & Brian's Lull Will Seem Brief, An Inn Significant Interlude, A Deep Breadth, So The Finishing Touches, Delayed Rightly So, A Children's Song, A Teenage Symphony, Completed With Maturity, Farther Of The Man, Glorious Beyond Belief.' Expand
  40. jonh
    Dec 31, 2004
    10
    if possible, I'd take this music to those who have never heard it-a musical missionary if you will-to not hear this glorious soundscape can be nothing but a lost connection with sheer musical perfection-
  41. NickK
    Oct 24, 2004
    10
    I didn't think it was a good idea that Brain was re-recording SMiLE from scratch. However, he proved me wrong-- this is a masterful psychedelic pop opera, and I enjoy it much more than the bits and scraps we've been listening to for the last decade through bootlegs and official Beach Boy releases.
  42. RICHARDB
    Oct 2, 2004
    10
    Not much to say, except "blown away!" This goes into my top 5 of all time. The tracks released on the Good Vibrations box set really wetted my appetite, and now the complete album...it's....it's...words don't do justice.
  43. JM
    Oct 3, 2004
    10
    Who would have thought it could turn out this good almost 40 yrs later? I can't stop listening to it!!!
  44. JimM
    Oct 30, 2004
    10
    Great music, great composer, GREAT band! Brian's band pulls off what the Beach Boys never could. I can't get enough of this CD!
  45. RobbieW
    Oct 4, 2004
    10
    I always thought "Pet Sounds" was the best LP Brian Wilson would ever make. Now I have to say that "Smile" is even better. Even though I had high expectations, this CD has exceeded them. A++++
  46. ChristopherF
    Oct 4, 2004
    10
    A wonderful concept album fully realized. Comparisons to Sgt. Peppers are not inaccurate because Sgt Pepper isn't a concept album: it has no central theme. Brian Wilson is a phoenix rising form the ashes, again.
  47. paula
    Oct 7, 2004
    10
    the best 45 minutes of popular music i've ever heard.
  48. Shane
    Sep 28, 2004
    10
    So brilliant. So absolutely brilliant. My wait has only been 3 years, but during that 3 years I've dedicated so much time to researching this album and finding bootleg songs online. Brian took on an almost impossible task at finishing this and satisfying the legend, and I was afraid of him striking out after hearing his last solo album which was far from the brilliance we've So brilliant. So absolutely brilliant. My wait has only been 3 years, but during that 3 years I've dedicated so much time to researching this album and finding bootleg songs online. Brian took on an almost impossible task at finishing this and satisfying the legend, and I was afraid of him striking out after hearing his last solo album which was far from the brilliance we've come to know from him. He's done anything but, though. Bases loaded, bottom of the 9th, down by 3. Truly a walk off grand slam from Brian Wilson. Expand
  49. MikeA
    Sep 28, 2004
    10
    A Masterpiece
  50. NickJ
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    Prepare yourself for something new at every listen. A superb mix of feelgood pop, art opus and grand slam genius eccentricity. However in terms of mood, for 'eccentricity' replace this word with 'electricity' as far as this bands performance goes.
  51. DennisS
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    Words could not describe the first time I heard it!! It is by far the best rock concept album of all time!!! A true Brian Wilson Masterpiece!!!!!
  52. RayG
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    The production on this 2004 recording is right where it should be...somewhere between then and now...leaning towards then...I actually prefer ALOT of it to the older stuff, and I honestly NEVER thought that would be the case The casing is absolutely beautiful and the last page of the booklet damn near brought a tear to my eye. God bless you Brian Wilson for blessing me with this, the The production on this 2004 recording is right where it should be...somewhere between then and now...leaning towards then...I actually prefer ALOT of it to the older stuff, and I honestly NEVER thought that would be the case The casing is absolutely beautiful and the last page of the booklet damn near brought a tear to my eye. God bless you Brian Wilson for blessing me with this, the greatest album I have ever heard. Expand
  53. DamonF
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    When I heard this album after hearing the reviews, I am convinced that it has already obliterated every album made this year, out of the sky. This includes the new Morrissey album. This is how a decent album should be made by an artist. Sung brilliantly and layered and arranged without the use of meaningless computer technology
  54. df
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    STUNNING
  55. MattW
    Sep 30, 2004
    10
    This is one of the best records I've ever heard. Seriously.
  56. GaryR
    Jan 13, 2005
    10
    Awe-struck! More appreciated in 2004/5 than it would've been in 1967. Actually makes the music of 67 and yes even Peppe, sound dated. Smile was made for these times!
  57. BrianY
    Jan 18, 2005
    10
    A triumph of the human spirit and a beautiful piece of utterly fun, pop, perfection. The best album in years.
  58. PeterB
    Jan 19, 2005
    10
    Astounding!
  59. Suzan
    Dec 16, 2005
    10
    Melodic, masterly crafted, way ahead of its time for the late 60's, simply smile-worthy!!
  60. GaryN
    Jan 5, 2005
    10
    Outstanding CD. Complex music that grabs you from the first listen. Unique, expanding the meaning of rock music. Vocals are complicated but catchy so they don't leave your head. Heard it several times and it gets better with every listen.
  61. JR
    Jan 6, 2005
    10
    The album is a real trip...itll put you in mind states you cant get out of other music... like 'Cabin-essence", it really makes you think your in a home out on the range... and i think its safe to say the last track of the second (cycle of life) movement.."Surf's Up", whether you hear the new version or the old (on brians original demo),, it still will leave you in awe if you The album is a real trip...itll put you in mind states you cant get out of other music... like 'Cabin-essence", it really makes you think your in a home out on the range... and i think its safe to say the last track of the second (cycle of life) movement.."Surf's Up", whether you hear the new version or the old (on brians original demo),, it still will leave you in awe if you sit and listen to the lyrics... Thanks to Mr. Wilson for the finished work. -Jr Expand
  62. DaveD
    Jan 7, 2005
    10
    Best album since Brainwashed. That's along time.
  63. AllanH
    Feb 16, 2005
    10
    Everything you hoped and dreamed it would be and more. For it not only to live up to it's legendary reputations after all these year, but exceed it is a simply remarkable acheivement.
  64. JürgenR
    Mar 4, 2005
    10
    The best album of all time!!!
  65. TomF
    May 13, 2005
    10
    SMiLE is just undoubtedly the greatest music ever written. While the new tracks are missing a little of the heart of the 1967 tracks, they are close enough. The production on this album has yet to be tested by another musician.
  66. 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!
  67. 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
  68. 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
  69. 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.
  70. 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.
  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. 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
  73. dh
    Feb 20, 2008
    10
    Perfect. Only comparable to the Lonely Hearts Club Band.
  74. 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.
  75. AndyD.
    Jun 8, 2008
    10
    Truly stunning music. Love it!
  76. 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
  77. ConradC.
    Dec 16, 2009
    10
    Worth every minute of the wait!
  78. peter
    Jan 6, 2009
    10
    Beautiful and haunting. I cant imagine how anyone could walk away from this unchanged.
  79. ToddS
    May 9, 2009
    10
    Absolute perfection!
  80. 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!
  81. TiagoA.
    Sep 18, 2009
    10
    A great album, this have soul and it's brilliant.
  82. Dri
    Jan 15, 2010
    10
    Classic album of a genius.
  83. 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.
  84. AnthonyL
    Mar 26, 2010
    10
    Best album ever.
  85. StephenM
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    Worth the wait.
  86. ChrisH
    Nov 1, 2004
    10
    Remember 2004 when that SMILE album came out and those who weren't old enough in the 60s said oh that beach boy album concept thing with two old hits on it - Heroes and Villains and Good Vibrations. Bla Bla. Well we can all lose touch. It doesn't matter Brian Wilson did it. It's an album about the ups and downs of the American dream. The music is brilliant. It's Remember 2004 when that SMILE album came out and those who weren't old enough in the 60s said oh that beach boy album concept thing with two old hits on it - Heroes and Villains and Good Vibrations. Bla Bla. Well we can all lose touch. It doesn't matter Brian Wilson did it. It's an album about the ups and downs of the American dream. The music is brilliant. It's relevant to the times. It inspires. Very simple in SMILE there is hope. Expand
  87. BrianV
    Nov 13, 2004
    10
    Absolutely, genius. Brian Wilson and his masterwork. Thank you for giving us this Brian.
  88. JonathanS
    Oct 1, 2004
    10
    Unbelievable... gets better w/ each listening!
  89. steveb
    Nov 18, 2004
    10
    This is one of those rare pieces of music that keeps life worth living. For all of the people who rated thus poorly, I feel very badly for you, open your mind and ears and listen. There are few musical treasures that can match this. This is as good as Pet Sounds, Rubber Soul, Abbey Road, Highway 61 Revisted, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road or Imperial Bedroom. This is a classic. Forget the new This is one of those rare pieces of music that keeps life worth living. For all of the people who rated thus poorly, I feel very badly for you, open your mind and ears and listen. There are few musical treasures that can match this. This is as good as Pet Sounds, Rubber Soul, Abbey Road, Highway 61 Revisted, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road or Imperial Bedroom. This is a classic. Forget the new Papa Roach or whatever the heck you will be mis-spending your money on. This will grow with you, not be an embarrasing phase of your development. Expand
  90. LynnC.
    Nov 20, 2004
    10
    It's amazing. It's so musically sophisticated. There's really nothing like it out there still. It feels more like musical progression has gone backwards since 1967, when this would have come out originally. If it would have, I bet Beach Boys would be thought of very different than they are today. It's so joyous yet odd. Love it. Can't quit listening.
  91. DavidR
    Oct 12, 2004
    10
    First listen, I liked it but thought it was a bit odd. Then pieces began to surface in my memory. After a few more listens, I convinced it's one of the most original, wonderful, pieces I've ever heard. I love it.
  92. FatciderjohnTheBassbeast
    Nov 26, 2004
    10
    This arrived the day before my first born son-Lucas. Frankly, I've not stopped playing it. Complete Wilson Genius. Incredible, I really did think Brian had lost it until this. I knew it would be good after seeing it live in the summer. I just knew it! Brian I love you. A thousand thankyoooooos.
  93. DevinB
    Oct 13, 2004
    10
    Brilliant and heartbreaking, the work of a true virtuoso. Besides being immensely catchy and infectious in its moods, the three-suite style of circular song-structure makes this Brian's strongest album, surpassing the genius even of Pet Sounds. Sure, the highlights on Pet Sounds are insurmountable and make for unfair comparison. Smile, however, in its ambitious scope and flawless Brilliant and heartbreaking, the work of a true virtuoso. Besides being immensely catchy and infectious in its moods, the three-suite style of circular song-structure makes this Brian's strongest album, surpassing the genius even of Pet Sounds. Sure, the highlights on Pet Sounds are insurmountable and make for unfair comparison. Smile, however, in its ambitious scope and flawless execution demands canonization as well. Expand
  94. JoeM
    Oct 14, 2004
    10
    I am biased and a huge Brian Wilson fan and I admit that, but SMiLE, 38 years late is still a triumph. Believe it or not, it is even better and more powerful performed live. I love this music!
  95. FrankA
    Oct 2, 2004
    10
    SMiLE's time is NOW!
  96. RichH
    Oct 22, 2004
    10
    Greater than the sum of it's parts this record satisfies. There are moments when the music felt so right that tears welled up and I got a lump in my throat. Only the very best can do this to me.
  97. davidj
    Dec 2, 2004
    10
    The 37 year wait and finally......its here,probably the greatest album in the world.....EVER....Brian Wilson The Messiah brings a Masterpiece to his loving flock.
  98. CaptainStubing
    Dec 2, 2004
    10
    I attended two SMiLE live performances in early 2004. I did not know anything about the way Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks had decided to finalize the concept, and was literally blown away by the beauty of it all. Of course I was conversant with most existing unofficial material, but that didn't even remotely prepare me for the finished product. Now that the studio CD version is in I attended two SMiLE live performances in early 2004. I did not know anything about the way Brian Wilson and Van Dyke Parks had decided to finalize the concept, and was literally blown away by the beauty of it all. Of course I was conversant with most existing unofficial material, but that didn't even remotely prepare me for the finished product. Now that the studio CD version is in our hands, I can say that it belongs up there with a few other really unmissable albums in my collection. I also saw the excellent TV documentary 'Beautiful Dreamer - BW and the making of SMiLE' by David Leaf. I can strongly recommend this film to everyone. I will conclude with stating that I find the first review in this section, by Mack G., so pompous and beside the point that is only good for having a hearty laugh. Mack knows difficult words! He likes to name-drop! He even knows medical syndromes! But, the thing is...he knows zilch about art, which he so abundantly proves here. Expand
  99. kevins
    Dec 30, 2004
    10
    Unf**kinbelieveable. 37 years later this masterpiece is recreated by a ubertalented group of Brian Wilson minions. Absolutely fantastic. Miss it and lose out on the best album that you'll likely hear this side of 2000. Dig it or die.
  100. ealonrrigby
    Dec 5, 2004
    10
    excellnt
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. Los Angeles Times
    100
    "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]