The Calling

  • Record Label: Zoe
  • Release Date: Mar 6, 2007
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Time will tell, of course, but in The Calling, Carpenter may have her finest moment yet; it also feels like an artistic rebirth.
  2. If the new album goes farther in advocating a political conscience--"On with the Song" takes jabs at the jingoistic rubes who dissed the Dixie Chicks, while "Why Shouldn't We" insists we'll have worthy heroes in office again one day--it largely invokes the same quiet, warm, and conversational tone as its predecessor.
  3. The Calling will test your emotions, making you feel glowing and comfortable, then useless and helpless.
  4. It is her most authoritative and cogent statement.
  5. Only a singer-songwriter with the force and clarity of Mary Chapin Carpenter could make nihilism sound so cheery.
  6. Carpenter... us[es] image-rich, airy tunes to sweetly embrace positive persistence in the face of adversity.
  7. The album, like so much of her other work, should be on year-end lists nine months from now.
  8. Uncut
    70
    The Calling finds her in fine voice, nestling somewhere between Shawn Colvin and Helen Reddy. [Apr 2007, p.116]
  9. Paste Magazine
    60
    Though much of the blandness can be attributed to Matt Rollings' MOR production, one is left wishing an artist of Carpenter's considerable talents would eschew the aural dreck and truly shine. [May 2007, p.68]
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 9 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. AllenS
    May 8, 2007
    8
    This is such a fine album--free of the tiresome pyrotechnics and harshness that too often poses as authenticity and utterly obscures music. This is such a fine album--free of the tiresome pyrotechnics and harshness that too often poses as authenticity and utterly obscures music. No problem like that here. Plenty of good, melancholy strolls here. How does a complete stranger manage to sound like she's putting a hand on your shoulder and offering a sympathetic word for those all-too-common wounds? It's a rare singer or artist who achieves this. But again she does. Full Review »
  2. MattD.
    May 1, 2007
    9
    I completely disagree with Todd W. Mary Chapin is one of the finest around. Whether it be the imagery in "Twilight" or the more political I completely disagree with Todd W. Mary Chapin is one of the finest around. Whether it be the imagery in "Twilight" or the more political "Houston," she never fails to impress. Musically, this CD is almost as good as Come On Come On. Full Review »
  3. JohnD
    Apr 28, 2007
    10
    Obviously the last reviewer (Todd W) is clueless. Second generation musicians? Harry and Karen? REALLY??? Are we comparing this to Muskrat Obviously the last reviewer (Todd W) is clueless. Second generation musicians? Harry and Karen? REALLY??? Are we comparing this to Muskrat Love, or Taxi? This must be someone who listens to too much Rap, or perhaps went to too many Hot Tuna (Electric band) concerts and has no eardrums. This is an album that touches the heart, without being pretentious. I'm not a country music fan... but Mary has a way to get the message across the boundary of typecasting. Great album. Full Review »