Stills

Metascore
61

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
Buy On
  1. 70
    Gauntlet Hair’s reference points are sublime, of course, but when they come up with the grudging funk of ‘Simple’, it’s something that’s all their own work.
  2. Jul 15, 2013
    70
    With practically no dependence on laptop recording tricks, Stills sounds completely lost in another era, and all the darker and truer for it.
  3. 70
    Stills explores its feelings of hurt and misgiving more deftly with its music than with its lyrics; if you’re sick of Dick and Barry types, the darkly-focused new wave avant-pop of Stills can still offer its rewards.
  4. Jul 17, 2013
    68
    This is ultimately a transitory record, its gate-crashing momentum tempered by songs that feel like holdovers from Gauntlet Hair’s more whimsical debut. With Stills’ crisper production cleaning up the band’s formative psych-pop splatter, the album’s more sanguine tracks.
  5. Aug 1, 2013
    64
    It’s not perfect, but strong songwriting philosophy like this deserves to be noted and heard.
  6. Magnet
    Aug 16, 2013
    60
    The album's most obvious failing is the way in which the vocals are presented and mixed. [No. 101, p.55]
  7. Jul 12, 2013
    60
    It's filled with cool sounds, and makes for an interesting listen, but it’s not engaging. It leaves the listener unfeeling, untouched.
  8. Jul 12, 2013
    60
    Marred by a lack of discipline, but bursting with a deliciously bleak, psychotropic allure, Stills's capricious spirit is ultimately its greatest strength and its most glaring fault.
  9. Jul 19, 2013
    50
    It’s just that Stills loses this sense of purpose and intensity when Gauntlet Hair opts for creating the shadowy, haunting atmosphere that settles over the much of the album, with many of the experiments resembling a stylistic jumble that neither showcases the band’s undercover catchiness nor brings out the darker impulses they seem hell bent on exploring.
  10. Jul 16, 2013
    50
    It’s a darker, angrier album and it shows that the duo is adventurous, but the experiments don’t quite cohere.
  11. Jul 15, 2013
    50
    At only 31 minutes long, there is absolute bewilderment at how varied the output on Stills can be; it’s an exhausting listen in general.
  12. 50
    It’s very hard to understand where the identity of the band will finally settle when it alters its mask so numerously and swiftly across these ten disparate tracks.
  13. Under The Radar
    Aug 28, 2013
    45
    They wrongly assume dark tones will lead to increased substance, a mistake that sees Stills burn out in a banal fog of distortion. [Aug-Sep 2013, p.102]
  14. Jul 15, 2013
    40
    Somewhere under all this reverb and murk, Gauntlet Hair may yet have the makings of a fine band, but the album burns out long before they have an opportunity to reveal wether this is true.
  15. Jul 12, 2013
    40
    What made the band so charming--their indiscernible vocals, the prickly, overbearing guitars, the lo-fi grittiness of it all--has been lost in the makeover.

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