Tales of Us - Goldfrapp
Tales of Us Image
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 26 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 33 Ratings

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  • Summary: The sixth full-length release from the electronic duo is an cinematic-inspired album that will be accompanied by a film directed by Lisa Gunning.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 26
  2. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. Sep 10, 2013
    90
    This is real music, about real people, dealing in real emotion. That it sounds so gorgeously lush too is mere icing on a very rich cake.
  2. Sep 9, 2013
    80
    An intimate collection of fireside confessionals which weave their spell on you with a slow-burning intensity, seducing the listener by stealth.
  3. Sep 17, 2013
    80
    The album has a movie score feel, but this time every track is its own short film.
  4. Aug 30, 2013
    70
    Tales Of Us is relentlessly one note but frequently beautiful, and a welcome change from the theatrics of its immediate predecessor, 2010’s ‘Head First’.
  5. Sep 19, 2013
    70
    Musically, it's their most ambitious release, with full orchestras and mysterious meditations of reality and fantasy. [No. 102, p.56]
  6. Sep 13, 2013
    70
    It is a solid and dependable album, sure of its own purpose yet ready to complement those poignant moments when all that seems to be missing is a cue for the dramatic music to start.
  7. Nine of the ten songs are named after friends, and they’re samey and indulgent.

See all 26 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 9
  2. Negative: 2 out of 9
  1. Sep 10, 2013
    10
    Wonderful work by the duo. Another dramatic turn of sound, taking them away from the 80's synthpop of Head First to this new sounds. Some say it is like a fusion of Felt Mountain and Seventh Tree, but I am not comfortable with that comparison. The song's are not as disjointed as Felt Mountain, nor as lush as Seventh Tree. They are menacingly sung haunting listens filled with character, haunting and beautiful. Expand
  2. Sep 21, 2013
    10
    Goldfrapp return with their most breathtaking and mature album to date. You won't be disappointed by these inspiring and haunting songs. Having transformed once again into an entirely new beast, Goldfrapp dominate our senses with luscious melodies and sweeping strings. "Jo", "Thea" and "Clay" are the highlights of a very strong album which will surely be shortlisted for the Mercury Prize come next year. Expand
  3. Sep 10, 2013
    10
    The formula for the new Goldfrapp Album is the following: FELT MOUNTAIN and SEVENTH TREE had a child who is a fan of Coldplay's PARACHUTES, and while the womb, Orchestral Music was playing. The Results are simply Magnificent. After their 80 's influenced HEADS FIRST, it is good to hear the duo has returned to what they do best: Hypnotic Electronic Ambient Music. Expand
  4. Oct 10, 2013
    10
    Goldfrapp's latest album is a flash back to the past. Gone are the catchy, dance-infused choruses of old classics such as "Ooh La La", "Strict Machine" and "Rocket, the stripped-down, simplistic feel of the songs being reminiscent of their debut album Felt Mountain; and in my opinion, it's the best album they've released since then.
    'Jo' starts the album off well, with it's pleasantly repetitive refrains sticking in the mind long after listening. 'Annabel,' like most of the tracks presented here, is infused throughout by a haunting sense of melancholy and sadness. Then there's 'Drew'. Radio stations seem to think of 'Drew' as the first single from the album, but I'm not so sure it is there's been no separate release other than the music video which was put on the internet. Still, it's one of the most striking songs on the album, classic Goldfrapp and just a little bit brilliant. 'Ulla' and 'Alvar' then follow, both nice enough songs in their own right but neither stand out enough at me that I can yet tell them apart. Track 6, 'Thea', is one of my favourites on the album, the only one with an audible beat and synth, a hark back to their previous album. I imagine that had they had more time on 'Head First', as they have openly admitted they needed, we would have had more songs like this. 'Simone' is next, which again is a nice enough song but it just feels a little bit too much like more of the same. 'Stranger' (the only song on the album which isn't a name) is proper, Felt Mountain era Goldfrapp. It's a great song. There's even some whistling. What more could you want? Then follows 'Laurel' which, like many of the other songs, has a haunting melody, and shows that Alison is still at her peak vocally remarkably for a woman of 47.
    The album ends with 'Clay', a song so incredibly moving that it doesn't just make up for the sameyness of some of the other songs, it positively negates it. Astonishingly beautiful, particularly when you learn what the inspiration for the song was. I am being honest here when I say that this is possibly the best song ever to come from Alison and Will.
    As a whole, whilst the album may at first to some appear to be a collection of similar sounding tunes, each one holds its own, and I can imagine that each will be the favourite of someone out there; which is something I have never said about a Goldfrapp album in the past. Unlike their previous releases, there's no weak link here perhaps it's just that some of the songs seem less impressive because of the incredible passion and heart of the ones surrounding them.
    Despite this, it's their best album since Felt Mountain, and possibly even their best ever. A minor masterpiece.
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  5. Dec 8, 2013
    7
    An interesting conceptual album that follows Goldfrapp through a cinematic orchestral world of wonderment, at times a bit samey-same, it is original and great to do yoga by. Expand
  6. Sep 24, 2013
    5
    I think this album is pretty unremarkable. As subtle as the sound is, I think it's pretty forgettable- as such I describe it as 'A Dream You're Likely to Forget' in my blog review.

    Have a read (it's short), any feedback is welcome. Thanks

    http://osianlewis.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/goldfrapp-tales-of-us-review-dream.html
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  7. Sep 26, 2013
    0
    This record made me want to kill myself. It is SO BORING. Goldfrapp can do so much better than this. Can only imagine how bad the film is gonna be. Yuck. Expand

See all 9 User Reviews