Start and Complete

  • Record Label: Domino
  • Release Date: Apr 26, 2011
Metascore
60

Mixed or average reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
Buy On
  1. Apr 27, 2011
    60
    Ultimately, a full album based around relaxed, Rhodes-based ballads is probably too bland for thrill-seekers, but Start & Complete is the type of one-off that might be of considerable interest to fans.
  2. May 4, 2011
    60
    At the end of the day, Start and Complete is hardly essential listening, but it is what it is: a dalliance.
  3. Apr 28, 2011
    72
    Start and Complete ultimately achieves what it sets out to do, which is to place a song-oriented frame around another off-the-cuff session by these four disparate talents, who will no doubt spin off in a completely different direction should About Group reconvene.
  4. Uncut
    Apr 21, 2011
    60
    It has a peculiar charm. [May 2011, p.77]
  5. Q Magazine
    May 31, 2011
    60
    Alexis Taylor teams up with Spiritualized guitarist John Coxon and Charles Hayward, drummer with post-punk originals This Heat, for a charming diversion that draws freely on '70s jazz, Southern rhythm-and-blues and vintage synths. [Jun 2011, p.107]
  6. Mojo
    May 18, 2011
    40
    The possibilities of "first ideas" is fatally undermined by a lack of ideas. [May 2011, p.110]
  7. Apr 22, 2011
    60
    Essential only for Alexis Taylor's fanbase? Yes, but an intriguing and easily loveable record for many more.
  8. Under The Radar
    May 27, 2011
    40
    These four hanging out and jamming is to be celebrated, no question, but a slightly less ad-hoc endeavor might elicit more spins. [May 2011, p.75]
  9. Apr 22, 2011
    80
    On the whole Start And Complete is a singular and fearless album that conveys significant emotion, rewards repeat listens, and shows what can be achieved when a band's approach to music is defined by bravery and vision.
  10. May 3, 2011
    75
    It would have been great to hear Hayward and Coxon bring more of their distinct voices to the table, but with songs as charmingly off-kilter and sweetly understated as this, it's hard to complain.
  11. Apr 22, 2011
    60
    Unfortunately, those songs are slight, unfocused things.
  12. 50
    Many of the tracks start out promising, but they don't have the excitement needed to keep listeners hooked.
  13. May 10, 2011
    40
    Taken in small bites, there are great moments here, but you're unlikely to clean your plate and ask for seconds for all 14 courses. I for one will be hanging out for dessert, but I don't imagine I'll be invited for dinner again.
  14. May 13, 2011
    60
    Somehow, with an expansive medley of guitar licks and swirling organ solos, everything clicks into place here and the band settles into an irresistible groove. Unfortunately, though, that isn't enough to stop one from hoping Taylor returns to his day job sooner rather than later.
  15. May 3, 2011
    70
    While Start And Complete happens to have been recorded in just one day, lo and behold, it turns out to be album of relatively straightforward songs, staying largely within the musical and lyrical conventions of the pop/rock universe.
  16. Apr 22, 2011
    80
    A marvellous little record where improvisation rubs shoulders with immediacy.
  17. The Wire
    May 3, 2011
    40
    Hayward sounds bored, Coxon throws out Clapton-ish licks, and Taylor's milk-and-water vocals make him sound like the younger brother of The Beautiful South's Paul Heaton. Only Thomas seems willing to inject any imagination into the songs. [Apr 2011, p.52]

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