Sunbather - Deafheaven
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Jun 13, 2013
    100
    You can spend hours dismantling Sunbather and cooking up a neat sub-sub-genre for it (post-black-metal-gaze-death-dreamcore-whatever). Or you can just call it one of the year’s best records.
  2. It's bold, intelligent, and demanding--taking all your emotions and senses and beating them to a pulp while going to a place sonically that’s essentially been untouched by its peers.
  3. Jun 11, 2013
    100
    What’s undeniable is that moments from Sunbather will resonate long after the pointless babble has died down, proving that sometimes the greatest beauty can only be found in the face of chaos.
  4. Jun 11, 2013
    94
    Deafheaven’s second outing is wondrous celebration of boundless ambition and pure artistic vision.
  5. Sunbather is a future classic, no matter where you pigeonhole it, and that’s the mark of a true sonic masterpiece. Black metal, not black metal, just call it what it is: perfect.
  6. Dec 2, 2013
    90
    Sunbather is an emotionally overwhelming but truly absorbing listen. But best of all, it’s cleansing.
  7. Jul 3, 2013
    90
    Many bands go through their entire career without making an album as well crafted, fully realized, and downright gorgeous as Sunbather, and somehow, Deafheaven have managed to nail it on their second outing, with an album that seems to get bigger and more affective with each listen.
  8. Jun 24, 2013
    90
    A record everyone with half an experimental ear should experience, even if they run from it, screaming.
  9. Jun 19, 2013
    90
    Uneasy listening doesn’t get much better.
  10. Jun 17, 2013
    90
    Sunbather needs not to be judged as black metal, post metal, or any other subgenre, but simply as heavy music--loud, visceral, beautiful heavy music.
  11. 90
    Sunbather is a developed, mature, and, above all, an original statement that truly lives up to the unbelievable amount of hype it has earned.
  12. Jun 12, 2013
    90
    Sunbather is every bit as explosive and engaging as any metal album you’re likely to hear all year.
  13. Jun 12, 2013
    90
    Deafheaven’s audacity and artistry are hard to deny, which is but one of many reasons why Sunbather is an essential listen, and one of 2013’s boldest works of art.
  14. Jun 11, 2013
    90
    The result is a perfectly flowing album that is, at times, as calming as it is chaotic.
  15. Jun 11, 2013
    89
    With Sunbather, Deafheaven have made one of the biggest albums of the year, one that impresses you with its scale, the way Swans' The Seer did last year.
  16. Jun 26, 2013
    80
    It's not for the light-hearted, but Deafheaven have delivered a deranged, damaged, majestic treat here. [8 Jun 2013, p.54]
  17. Jun 11, 2013
    80
    If you want a "black metal album" that serves dually as make-out music and a loneliness weapon, this is as emo and earnest as it gets.
  18. Aug 12, 2013
    60
    The mood stays ominous, even as sonic details thrill headphone-equipped headbangers.
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 275 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 63 out of 79
  2. Negative: 13 out of 79
  1. Jun 12, 2013
    10
    I've honestly never heard anything like this. Granted, I'm not as seasoned in metal, but it skews more post-rock than anything. That beingI've honestly never heard anything like this. Granted, I'm not as seasoned in metal, but it skews more post-rock than anything. That being said, as an album, this is truly a remarkable effort from a group that has something interesting to say. There's a lot of complex songwriting, and enough of a dynamic experience that this is as an accessible of a challenge any newcomers are ever going to find. One of the best of the year. Full Review »
  2. Jun 12, 2013
    9
    Getting sick and tired of close minded Black Metal 'fans' that wouldn't recognize good music if it came and bit them on the ass.
    How on earth
    Getting sick and tired of close minded Black Metal 'fans' that wouldn't recognize good music if it came and bit them on the ass.
    How on earth would you rate an album as intense, original and beautifully lous a "0" is beyond me and those of you who made seperate accounts to vote it down should get a life.

    Now to the actual review.

    This is an album that is so well thought out, so well played, so beautifully paced and just screams (quite literally) an entire spectrum of emotions at its listeners, it defies belief.
    There is so much to be gained from repeat listenings, so much hidden in the layers of sound, such craftmanship in the recordings that it is almost weird you can still hear the fun the musicians had while making it. There is so much passion oozing out of the grooves, so much love for music and such originality that I cannot think any other release will top this in 2013.
    Full Review »
  3. Jun 13, 2013
    5
    This is probably not going to appeal to people who aren't big fans of the genre or music critics. Don't let the 97 rating fool you intoThis is probably not going to appeal to people who aren't big fans of the genre or music critics. Don't let the 97 rating fool you into thinking this is something for everybody. Full Review »