The Big Roar - The Joy Formidable
The Big Roar Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 13 Ratings

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  • Summary: This is the debut full-length album on Atlantic for the Welsh trio and continues to be a cacophony of rock riffs and pop sensibility.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Feb 11, 2011
    The welsh trio have taken their time to reach this point, but with The Big Roar they have taken their opportunity with great style, producing what I think is a mature, clever and exceptionally listenable record from start to finish--and that's a mighty thing.
  2. They have dared to venture in the loud, the textured and the big sounds, instead of the more minimal, tangy and clean indie rock we are hearing far too much of these days.
  3. Mar 15, 2011
    There's a right way and a wrong way to write anthems in the early 21st century, and the Joy Formidable -- with only three bandmembers present -- find themselves on the right side of the dividing line during the majority of this debut.
  4. Mar 17, 2011
    Welsh rock trio The Joy Formidable gives us a roar that makes things of the '90s seem modern again.
  5. Mar 14, 2011
    The Joy Formidable has been backed with the recording budget to fully realize their vision. They're a band with ideas, perhaps a little too much confidence in them, and one that's benefitted from an album clearly assembled by expert hands.
  6. Mar 11, 2011
    There's no denying the Joy Formidable's passion, vigor, and pop smarts; it would just be easier to appreciate those qualities if The Big Roar didn't so often sound like a big blur.
  7. Jun 8, 2011
    Unfortunately, The Big Roar can't sustain the love affair over 12 tracks. [May 2011, p.85]

See all 24 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Apr 14, 2011
    This is not a versatile album, in the sense that you won't be given a whole lot of breathing room, but The Joy Formidable succeed in out-muscling the tattooed guitar bands who undeservedly carry that reputation. And before you think them another possible product for frat-house drunkards, take note that "The Big Roar" handles its big roar with more elegance, agility and grace than we are accustomed to hearing from electric instruments. And who would be ballsy enough to start an album, let alone the sets of their current tour, with an anthem, "The Everchanging Spectrum of a Lie", that pushes nearly eight minutes? But after, there is no letdown. The Welsh trio has the energy and the smarts to continue their pulsating adrenaline rush for another forty. The loud and aggressive guitars and bass are pillowed atop such lovely ambiance that a full play-through leads to a feeling not unlike a waking dream. So it can be forgiven if, at the end of the album's closing stunner "The Greatest Light is the Greatest Shade", you choose to re-submerge into their imagined world rather than, once again, taking on your own. Expand
  2. May 12, 2013
    This band I had first heard about when they preformed on last call. After listening to "A Balloon Called Moaning" I decided to check out the Big Roar. I was very impressed with their sound and how much I liked this album. They have a very alternative rock sound. From the first track "The Ever Changing Spectrum of a Lie", the album captures you. I would strongly recommend this to any alternative rock fan as a great album. Can't wait to see what they do next! Expand
  3. Mar 19, 2011
    The hardened, accelerated riffs and floor thudding bass rhythms bear a resemblance to their early 90s influences, but with Ritzy Bryan's powerful melodies there's an ambitious aesthetic that encompasses Indie/pop. The amalgam of slow burning intensity and primal, explosive head numbing power is pitched just right, and is fully realized on the magnificent "Whirring". Expand