The Con - Tegan and Sara

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. Lyrical wallowing is almost a required element for this genre, and ultimately even The Con's failings work in its favor, providing a macro version of what the best Tegan And Sara songs do, by stumbling along recklessly, then falling together.
  2. Somehow The Con is even more obsessive sounding than Tegan and Sara’s earlier work, and it’s probably even better; it could well be one of the year’s best albums.
  3. A collection of angsty, catchy pop that's also ideal for scoring the antics of young doctors in heat.
  4. 82
    The Con is a startlingly dark, yet characteristically vibrant offering, featuring a band that’s learned to harness the energy-highs, while tempering pretty (even pastoral) pop-folk with a new, deeply-affecting brand of melancholy.
  5. The Con, despite its title, is honest music. [Summer 2007, p.77]
  6. 80
    The Con rockets beyond even their own high standards. [Mar 2008, p.103]
  7. 80
    Canada's Quin twins fairly blaze through The Con's 14 compact, supercharged tracks. [Oct 2007, p.109]
  8. 80
    They might sound like Girl Scouts, but these are tough cookies. [Aug 2007, p.117]
  9. The songs on the album complement each other, play off the other's strengths, and make the record very much an entity, instead of simply a collection of tracks, setting it off as an impressive step forward in their already commendable discography.
  10. Their fifth album is another step up the ladder. [Apr 2008, p.117]
  11. 80
    Thw Quin twins' new-wave pop hooks are stroonger than ever. [Aug 2007, p.109]
  12. Better than anything they've done to date.
  13. The Con a welcome addition to summer playlists and to Tegan & Sara's promising catalog.
  14. The latest electro-folk offering from these Canadian twins is somehow cuter, catchier, and more heartache-y than their last disc.
  15. The Con skillfully packs its instant hooks in so tight, virtually every line becomes the one you want to sing along to--and the twins' lyrics aren't your typical pop pabulum.
  16. It's a dark, personal record that holds big promises for the future.
  17. In general, the songs are indeed kept simple. The album is not absent of synths and effects, but it never relies on mere production alone. The excitement of The Con comes, instead of from loops and distortion, from earnest emotion and the versatile voices of the Quin sisters.
  18. The real credit, however, goes to the songwriting of the eponymous duo. This album was not "saved in the production," as it were. The Con is a document written in the half-frenzy of a clusterfuck.
  19. Their keyboard-heavy, New Wave-ish music is also uncommonly catchy.
  20. The Con is undoubtedly as sweet as it is short.
  21. Their vocals throughout the entire album are fantastic and they work together only like sisters could, even if they live across one of the largest countries in the world.
  22. The pared-down moments of The Con seem to long for the clusterfuckedness of the album’s meatier tracks, and for the most part, rightly so.
  23. The record's most interesting bits--a keen sense of melody--disappear too quickly and can't carry the album over its production bumps.
  24. The Con is a mostly mature collection of solid songs.
  25. A saddening case of brick production, paper soul--here the Quins are little more than twin airbags.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 86 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 40
  2. Negative: 3 out of 40
  1. EmD
    Aug 6, 2007
    Simply an amazing album. T+S create a nostalgically beautiful landscape with their sweet harmonies and heavenly riffs. ps. anyone notice that the majority of people who don;t like this album happen to be straight boys. (well i'm guessing that their straight) go listen to something lame like that new smashing pumpkins album. AND yes this album got higher ratings than White Stripes and Prince, because it is a better album!! Alhtough I do like the White Stripes, their latest effort was recorded in 3 weeks and the album sounds like it - very messy and ear splitting. and Prince is just some creepy jesus freak now... Full Review »
  2. KC
    Jul 29, 2007
    I'll spare you their usual snobbish self-righteous hipster-cute banter and tell it to you straight: pichfork better get that pitchfork out of their skinny indie arses. Now that's out of the way.... Tegan & Sara's new album makes So Jealous look laughable in comparison. It feels deeper, more heartfelt, and essentially more mature. Yes, it is still undisguisedly and unashamedly Pop Music (complete with fun and carefree melodies; loosen up!), make no mistake, but what sets it apart is the music's thoughtful lyrics, honest indie-sensibility, and of course the girls' passion and sheer talent. Full Review »
  3. JimM
    Dec 11, 2007
    Terrific. I find it hard to swallow some of the criticisms of this album when - so clearly - this is a work of honesty and strength. The lyrics are plainly honest at worst - at best, they're revelatory. I've also had a more incessant urge to start the album from the first track after listening to it through than I did with So Jealous or If It Was You. 'The Con,' if strangely used as the album's title track, might be the best pop-rock song of the year and 'Dark Come Soon' is transcendent in its simplicity and directness. More than ever, The Con is the sisters finding their matching pieces - they've never sounded so good together. Full Review »