Thank You, Happy Birthday - Cage the Elephant
Thank You, Happy Birthday Image
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 40 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Kentucky quintet's sophomore album is filled with noisy guitars and pop-laced alternative rock jams, comparable to bands like the Pixies and Cake.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. May 2, 2011
    80
    Matt Shultz makes a natural showman firmly in the mouth Perry Farrell mould. Front of house taken care of, it's then just a matter of pairing the noise and excitement, something they achieve in short, sharp bursts with room to spare. [Apr 2011, p.98]
  2. 80
    The Kentucky combo Cage the Elephant manage to find a new wrinkle on the face of US indie-punk, thanks to an enthusiasm for yoking catchy melodies to abrasive guitar riffs that recalls the Pixies.
  3. Mar 29, 2011
    80
    They've sorted through a kitbag of 80 songs and made good on the potential. [Apr 2011, p.77]
  4. Jan 11, 2011
    70
    While the grand and sometimes snotty lyrics might not be to all tastes, anyone who misses the days when rock radio loved Nirvana and Blur will find his retro rave-up easy to embrace.
  5. 70
    Basically, the album's a mess of melody, noise, stupidity, screaming and big choruses that does its bit for the all-important Campaign Against Intellectualism In Rock. Fun.
  6. Mar 18, 2011
    70
    They don't offer much that's new, but this album is far too enjoyable to squabble over that.
  7. 60
    It all seems more diverse than it actually sounds, and true, the band borrows plenty, including some room to play around with the sound, but Thank You Happy Birthday transcends its genres, and would be better simply labeled as a solid second step.

See all 22 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. Jan 14, 2011
    10
    Une albulm vraiment l'fun à écouté, le Cage The Elephant style à son meilleur. C'est exactement ce à quoi on veux s'attendre quand on écoute un nouveau disque. Le tout est divertissant et diversifié. C'est simplement excellent. Thank You Happy Birthday est la pour comblé tout coeur. Expand
  2. Nov 16, 2011
    10
    It's weird that this mess of music has ended up being my favorite album of 2011 so far. Maybe it's because everything else sucks, of maybe it's just because, all while being a mess, this album is the best mess I've ever heard. Great musical diversity throws you from heavy creepy psychedelic tracks all the way into soft melodic chord strumming all the way into indie rocking and definitely has something for every taste. While being lyrically less critical than their last effort, the lyrics are just as great and deep. Definite 10/10 for me. Definitely a band to look out for in the future. Expand
  3. Apr 19, 2012
    10
    To be honest, it didn't really hit me as being all that great at first. I enjoyed their debut album a lot. I just keep finding myself coming back to this album time and time again. Once every couple of weeks, I will just listen through all of it. The variety of music on this album is great. I find that I don't get used to one particular sound throughout the whole album. It keeps you on your toes. Good stuff. Collapse
  4. Jun 8, 2011
    7
    Let's have a minor celebration for a band showing defined improvement simply because it occurs so infrequently these days. Kentucky rockers Cage The Elephant have distilled their tangled mess of post punk, garage and grunge and added a pop sensibility which makes "Thank You Happy Birthday" a more than worthy follow up to their 2008 self titled debut. Singer Matthew Shultz confidently mixes howls, growls and shrieks with deliberate melodies, entrusting guitarist brother Brad and the rest of the band to enthusiastically bash out discordant noises with refreshing gusto. In addition, thereâ Expand
  5. Nov 5, 2013
    7
    [7.3] Cage The Elephant certainly hasn't found their style with this release, but Thank You, Happy Birthday is as close to what can be considered a cohesive effort as possible. It's fast, loud, and heavily distorted, but the more pop-oriented style is much stronger than their contrived, almost laughable attempt at blues rock. While this album doesn't really sound electronic, it definitely takes its influences from some more eccentric indie rock. While distortion certainly isn't used sparingly, it's used in a way that complements odd rock betas and the rapid vocals. It is hard to pick out individual instruments, which makes each track sort of uniformly overwhelming, and not easy to enjoy. Ultimately though, it's an album with enough personality and enough style to warrant Cage The Elephant some deserved popularity. Cage the Elephant respectably does not give that much of a f*ck, and that lack of a f*ck-giving is improving. Expand
  6. j30
    Jul 20, 2011
    7
    Definitely a step forward from their first album. There's still work to be done on this band, but their future is bright as long as they don't sell-out like their song Sell Yourself warns. There's too many ideas going around and it makes the album feel uneven. One main influence I can draw from this album is obvious, the Pixies. Which is not a bad thing and should follow that idea rather than some of their other chaotic ones (Indy Kidz). I'm excited to see what they do next time around. Key Tracks: Always Something, Shake Me Down (way too overplayed), and Right Before My Eyes. Expand
  7. Nov 9, 2012
    5
    It's the Pixies, but more grounded.

See all 14 User Reviews