Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 23
  2. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. 100
    This may be the most uncharacteristic of his albums, but by venturing outside his comfort zone, Hawley has in turn made his best.
  2. May 3, 2012
    Despite the guitars crashing and howling around him, and the presence of a rather West End-sounding chorus of backing vocalists, he sounds exactly like Richard Hawley. The same, but different: a tough trick, pulled off in style.
  3. May 8, 2012
    An unconventional masterpiece.
  4. Jul 18, 2012
    His craftsman's melodiousness and honest voice add balm and balance. [Jun 2012, p.84]
  5. May 15, 2012
    What Standing at the Sky's Edge loses in heartbreak it easily makes up for in depth, and Hawley has just given us something that is truly worth sinking into.
  6. 80
    ["Before" is] one of many standouts in a nine-song collection that engages body and mind throughout.
  7. May 9, 2012
    By employing hard-rocking, sometimes spacey psychedelia (gloriously) to express the anger he feels as he watches the hard-won gains of history being damaged and destroyed in unsavory ways, Hawley creates an essential listen.
  8. May 9, 2012
    In Standing At The Sky's Edge Richard Hawley has forged his most fully realised and heartfelt collection of music to date. This requires your urgent attention.
  9. 80
    Richard Hawley has upped his game considerably on his first album for Parlophone, leaving behind his urbane, rockabilly-tinged retro-nuevo style for a full-blooded immersion in ringing psychedelic rock. It's totally unexpected, and completely winning.
  10. May 4, 2012
    Hawley ditches his heavily orchestrated, Indie Orbison Of The North shtick in favour of a sound that's darker, ragged and riff-heavy. It works.
  11. May 2, 2012
    However you choose to describe it, or whatever your preconceptions of Hawley and his music, this is definitely an album you should bend a considered ear towards.
  12. May 2, 2012
    The men are going to love it. But the women will still love Richard Hawley, too.
  13. Jun 8, 2012
    He's pushing himself ever so slightly, and while it might not be enough to draw in the unconverted, the rest of us will want to stick around for more.
  14. Aug 22, 2012
    This is a full-on rock album offering horizon-burning electric guitar as its signature, with Hawley's band stretching out with him on a few tracks for fabulously psych-fried passages. [Aug/Sep 2012, p.117]
  15. May 3, 2012
    Fans of Hawley's rueful view of love and relationships, his fine guitar playing, and his magnificent singing voice will find them all present and correct here, if displayed in unexpected ways. [Jun 2012, p.75]
  16. May 2, 2012
    If some of the sound could be better defined, and the special effects shaken on with a slightly lighter hand, it would be more coherent and ultimately more impressive.
  17. Oct 1, 2012
    It's difficult to accept him as an angry rocker. He's so great as a lovelorn crooner - heard here on "Seek It," one of the album's few moments of tenderness - that it's hard not to be nostalgic for the old Hawley. [No.91, p.55]
  18. Jun 20, 2012
    Hawley wields his guitar with fresh zeal, unfurling long, turbulent solos while his chocolatey baritone is less Roy Orbison, more Mark Lanegan. But the songwriting lags behind the sound. [Jun 2012, p.104]
  19. 60
    Hawley's grasp of psychedelia is probably closer to the (latterday) Verve's than it is to, say, Animal Collective's.
  20. Jun 29, 2012
    Sky's Edge has some of the old Hawley magic in the form of "The Wood Collier's Grave"... But for the most part, it's an unwelcome return to a less distinguished period in Hawley's career, back before he knew how to make more beguiling music than this.
  21. Sep 5, 2012
    Standing at the Sky's Edge is Hawley's first major misstep.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. May 16, 2012
    In short it's Richard goes psychedelic. not a bad listen but i can't help find it a little boring. His poorest effort in a while. I'm disappointed. Hopefully he can come good with the next album. Full Review »
  2. Mar 1, 2013
    After a series of truly beautiful albums, RH returns here having taken a sharp turn in direction with probably his most psychedelic record. It's got what sounds like layers of dark, swirling guitars. The music is distorted but the unmistakable voice is still there above it all. For the most part, the songs are quite strong but for me, there are noticably fewer moments of genius that were to be found at his previous efforts. Still pretty good though. Full Review »
  3. Nov 2, 2012
    This one took a few listens to connect, but now that it has, I can say it's another strong Hawley effort. He just doesn't make bad albums. Criminally underrated songwriter here in the States. Drenched in reverb and sprawling guitar, it's a departure from most of his solo stuff, but I think it's a welcome change. Good to see him back exploring his range as a musician and writer. Full Review »