The Family Sign

Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
Buy On
  1. Dec 7, 2011
    70
    Anyone intrigued by the idea of emo-rap at its most introspective will find this a well-crafted and moving effort, while returning Atmosphere fans get the satisfying usual with some extra maturity and growth.
  2. Jun 21, 2011
    80
    The Family Sign is a strong continuation and addition to a powerful series of modern rap albums. It's bigger than past records and heavier, a nice combination that genuinely puts the listener into an emotional flux.
  3. Apr 12, 2011
    83
    The best songs are like these-sad, minimal, and instrument-driven.
  4. 70
    It has already been proven that serious topics are not beyond Atmosphere's grasp, and The Family Sign takes a second or third listen to fully absorb, but this album is certifiable proof that the dark side has a melody.
  5. Alternative Press
    Apr 12, 2011
    80
    "You outgrew the sum of your parts," he raps at one point; that line describes the mature and masterful The Family Sign, as well. [May 2011, p.92]
  6. Jun 13, 2011
    70
    It's difficult to ignore that a significant amount of The Family Sign emits a passing impression that Slug plucked several emotive subjects from a hat, then challenged himself to use them as a writing framework.
  7. Apr 19, 2011
    72
    As the album's title suggests, Slug primarily concerns himself here with matters of home and family, but it's hardly a Hallmark affair.
  8. Apr 13, 2011
    70
    The Family Sign finds Atmosphere back on his old level of sharp self-criticism, but the album is also a step forward for the whole group.
  9. Apr 26, 2011
    75
    You have to be a fan of either or both men going in, and IF you are, then the sheer force of their persona and their political viewpoint won't be off-putting to you. Newcomers beware, this album is not the place to start.
  10. Apr 11, 2011
    80
    The Family Sign is a heavy, moody album. There's not nearly as much humor here as with Atmosphere's previous two releases, but that doesn't make it any less of a quality addition to the group's catalogue.
  11. Apr 18, 2011
    70
    While Sean Slug Daley's heartfelt lyrics, reflecting humorously on fatherhood, love and loss, are given full vent by producer Ant, the addition once again of keyboardist Erick Anderson and guitarist Nate Collis brings Atmosphere's trademark sound to another level.
  12. May 13, 2011
    80
    The album still possesses enough of the classic Slug and Ant material that the underground has come to love that it will prove a welcome addition to their catalog.
  13. Apr 21, 2011
    87
    There are some tracks on this record I don't appreciate much now as a college student in my early 20s, but I can guarantee as I get older and more mature, I will find this album more relatable and more enjoyable.
User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 16 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Jan 8, 2016
    6
    I'm a big fan of Atmosphere and have been listening to them for a long time. I did not really care for this album. There were soem good songsI'm a big fan of Atmosphere and have been listening to them for a long time. I did not really care for this album. There were soem good songs but most of the tracks felt forced or meaningless. Just not the best showing from Atmosphere, and okay rap album. Full Review »
  2. Dec 23, 2012
    8
    It's a good album, yeah, but he's reached his climax. Slug knows that, so he's settling down with this album. It's a good storytellingIt's a good album, yeah, but he's reached his climax. Slug knows that, so he's settling down with this album. It's a good storytelling perspective and I believe it's still a good album, but not on the levels of Overcast! or God Loves Ugly. It is of course an album to add to the collection though. Full Review »
  3. May 2, 2011
    8
    Pretty good record. I expect nothing less from Atmosphere at this point. It's not as awesome as some of his other records, but it's betterPretty good record. I expect nothing less from Atmosphere at this point. It's not as awesome as some of his other records, but it's better than a few, too. Kinda depressing on the whole; nothing like "You Can't Imagine..." I'd recommend it, though--especially if you like his other stuff. Full Review »