The Believer - Rhett Miller
The Believer Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 9 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second solo disc from the Old 97s frontman includes contributions from Rachael Yamagata and Jon Brion.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 18
  2. Negative: 1 out of 18
  1. He thinks he belongs up there in front of that expert new band, singing or shouting whatever banality, profundity, or turn of phrase he's written down, and his level of enthusiasm combined with his level of craft will convince anyone who still likes, you know, songs.
  2. Has less twang but more bang than any of his previous work. [4 Mar 2006]
  3. The Believer is a strong and enormous album about sex.
  4. While the Los Angeles-based Mr. Miller looks good at the cabaret mike, he's still better when part of a real band. [27 Feb 2006]
  5. The Believer may be a formula recording, but it still satisfies, for the most part, on the level of what it is: a finely crafted pop/rock album.
  6. Unfortunately, the music gets bogged down with strings and other symptoms of overproduction.
  7. No matter how many literary allusions or whimsically witty turns of phrase he packs into a verse, The Believer lacks the balance and blood of his previous work.

See all 18 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 8
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 8
  3. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. SteveM
    Mar 3, 2006
    This guy is a master songwriter! It amazes me that he's not bigger than he is in terms of public recognition.
  2. KeithH
    Mar 24, 2006
    A catchy,sometimes thrilling album that grows with repeated listening.
  3. TomW
    Mar 2, 2006
    This album, like The Instigator is the kind that makes you wish you were a sad, out of love pop singer. Yeah, the songs are safe, but why does an album need to be always need to push some new button, or for that matter, change in sound and content from the last work. These are great songs written by an artist that I hope will continue coming out with solo stuff. I really enjoy the Old 97s, but to be honest, I enjoy fight songs and Satellite Rides more than any of the twangy albums. This is RM's chance to continue where Old 97s left off before they back peddled on their last album (not that I don't enjoy it). Finally, I do believe that Rhett Miller is headed more on the right path to making the perfect pop album than Rivers Cuomo could ever hope. Keep it up! Expand
  4. StephenV
    May 19, 2006
    Rhett Miller understands how to write catchy songs that get better with repeated listens. I can't understand the low ratings. To me it is one of the top five recordings of 2006. Having said that I still prefer the Old 97's. Expand
  5. JDSaint
    Apr 4, 2006
    Better than the Old 97s Drag it Up or the 1st Rhett Miller solo The Instigator. This one continues the evolution from alt country to power pop though the re-recording of Singular Girl is actually twangier than the Satellite Rides outtake - and Question is inferior to the all acoustic original. Expand
  6. Stan
    Apr 8, 2006
    I like this a lot more than the last 97's album too. I like Singular Girl at least as much here, and you can't blame him for rerecording "Question" which should be a hit somewhere. Put him in the long tradition of artists like Matthew Sweet, Marshall Crenshaw and The DB's who put out perfect pop songs and will never make it on the radio. What's wrong with this world? Expand
  7. Presto
    Feb 28, 2006
    If I wasn't an Old 97's completist I don't think I'd even give Rhett Miller's solo stuff much of a chance but this album, which doesn't sound that different from his last one, is pleasant enough not to offend and catchy enough to stick around. I guess I like it but more than anything it just makes me miss the Old 97's and the Rhett Miller who wrote songs like Bel Air and Timebomb. Expand

See all 8 User Reviews