Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. While Summer in Abaddon features Pinbackā€™s by now trademarked sound and cryptic lyrics with a few nice developments, it falls victim to a sort of malaise of consistently indistinguishable mid-tempo rockers on the second half of an album that starts very strongly.
  2. Arguably their best record yet, a logical and accessible realization of a sound they've been developing for more than six years.
  3. 100
    Summer in Abaddon delivers an all-inclusive perfection that sets it apart from any other record this year.
  4. Summer in Abaddon is an album of small, but hardly insignificant pleasures, and it may be Pinback's finest work yet.
  5. A triumph of intense weirdness and cosy warmth.
  6. Combining dramatic, ethereal pop vocals with moody guitar and piano theatrics, Summer in Abaddon recalls a tighter, smoothed-out Built to Spill, or maybe a Dismemberment Plan reunion.
  7. It's quite a treat to hear the duo create such refreshingly original music with rock's "standard" instruments.
  8. Pinback can't be faulted for trying to capture a larger audience with their new record, because the fact of the matter is they're a good band with tremendous potential and ability. But for fans that have been following the group for some time, you'd like to see them get there already, and get on with it.
  9. New Musical Express (NME)
    The stuff of jagged, ornate artistes living in a weird pop monsterland with defiantly anti-wacky lyrics. [13 Nov 2004, p.57]
  10. Under The Radar
    There is some pabulum filler... But Abaddon's best moments are as good as Pinback's ever been. [#8, p.111]
  11. Falls a few yards short of essential listening.
  12. Alternative Press
    Sounds like the updated fourth side of Built To Spill's Perfect From Now On. [Nov 2004, p.142]
  13. Mojo
    [Pinback's] blend of warm and wistful is almost impossible to resist. [Jan 2005, p.104]
  14. Uncut
    For all their deft intricacies, they're somewhat characterless. [Dec 2004, p.140]
  15. Pinback is among a select group of indie rock bands who excel at making incredibly nuanced pop music full of graceful layers the intrepid listener can delight in sorting out.
  16. Filter
    Pinback is particularly good at harnessing a laid-back vibe that ultimately soothes much more than it disappoints. [#12, p.101]
  17. Entertainment Weekly
    These catchy songs are so sonically enthralling, you could call them heavenly. [15 Oct 2004, p.72]
  18. While not really better or worse than their previous albums, Summer in Abaddon is at least pretty good -- more of exactly what fans wanted.
  19. The cleaner, more direct approach both helps and hurts. Without at least some sonic kink, Pinback drifts toward the pleasant but undistinguished; its core sound is too rarefied to snag the common rock fan.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 29 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 29
  3. Negative: 2 out of 29
  1. Oct 11, 2011
    Nevermind the mainstream, this music is too good to get ruined by overexposure. Pinback seemed to have achieved the impossible: a truly indieNevermind the mainstream, this music is too good to get ruined by overexposure. Pinback seemed to have achieved the impossible: a truly indie record with masterful studio production; terrific musicianship that keep it loose; lyrics are obscured and seldom rhyme; cryptic yet memorable songs that are impossible to get out of your head; crisp and immediate playing; and enigmatic atmospheres. This is long-term listening, each song growing on you over time. Quite simply this or recent LCD SoundSystem will remind you or let you experience how engaging early albums by REM or U2 were, back when alternative was really, truly alternative. Full Review »
  2. SamD
    Apr 22, 2007
    Simply beautiful
  3. MikeC
    Apr 13, 2007
    One of the better & biggest surprises of 04. Really good album.