The Haunted Man - Bat for Lashes
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 36
  2. Negative: 0 out of 36
  1. The songs are expensive in their depth of emotion but comforting in their intimacy and alluring appeal.
  2. Oct 19, 2012
    85
    Stripped down of any excessive ornamentation, it's the most raw incarnation of Bat For Lashes we've heard yet.
  3. Oct 22, 2012
    84
    At once striking and enigmatic-- and artfully constructed.
  4. Dec 31, 2012
    80
    The Haunted Man is so effortlessly emotive that it seems to demand that we demand even more from it. Or at least, it would, if it weren't so easy to get lost in the many layers of these melodies and start thinking about the ghosts that Bat For Lashes is trying to chase away.
  5. Dec 4, 2012
    80
    At it's best, the record finds her swapping the heavy-handed concepts that've largely driven her work to date for the irrefutable impact of raw lyricism. [No. 93, p.56]
  6. 80
    Unlike previous Bat for Lashes albums, which grew gimmicky and overloaded, The Haunted Man keeps Ms. Khan and her unexpectedly succinct melodies in the foreground, urgent and unguarded.
  7. Oct 31, 2012
    80
    How can you talk about The Haunted Man without calling it "achingly beautiful"? This is a real problem, and it necessitates a thesaurus.
  8. Oct 25, 2012
    80
    What stands out about The Haunted Man [is] how Khan is able to wring out so much emotion from such clinically meticulous compositions... music that cuts this close to the bone can only be the product of an individual voice and imagination.
  9. 80
    The Haunted Man may not reveal a drastic stylistic shift, but the subtle difference is a nonetheless compelling documentation of the process of metamorphosis.
  10. Oct 23, 2012
    80
    The Haunted Man is her weightiest work so far.
  11. Oct 18, 2012
    80
    This album elicits a powerful aura, which continues to resonate potently several hours, even days, after the last note has died. [Nov 2012, p.82]
  12. Oct 18, 2012
    80
    There's clarity on The Haunted Man that comes from the sense of physical boundaries being pushed, of personal space being tested to its limits. [Nov 2012, p.97]
  13. Oct 18, 2012
    80
    The Haunted Man is yearning, elegant pop music in line with the past year's best.
  14. Oct 16, 2012
    80
    It's safe to say that Natasha Khan has once again managed to craft an album that ticks all the boxes, while also showing a maturity and evolution from her Mercury nominated sophomore album.
  15. It's a skilled blend of the organic and the electronic.
  16. 80
    So while The Haunted Man deals in less trinkets than its predecessor, it's not scant in splendour.
  17. Oct 15, 2012
    80
    [The Haunted Man is] beautiful, daring, and captivating, the sound of pop's dark heart carving out its own niche and cementing Khan's status as one of our most inventive, ambitious artists.
  18. Oct 11, 2012
    80
    Inventive and dark and sensual.
  19. Oct 11, 2012
    80
    As the title track gradually morphs from delicate ballad to fisherman shanty to blissful climax it's hard not to be awed, even if those casual listeners might not find much to keep them.
  20. Oct 18, 2012
    75
    Khan might be getting bolder, bigger, and more experimental, but pushing past what everyone expects or wants from you as an artist sometimes works - even the third time around.
  21. Oct 30, 2012
    70
    Focus and restraint might not sound exciting in and of themselves, but The Haunted Man is more direct than any of Bat for Lashes' previous work, and manages to keep the air of mystique around Khan that has made her one to watch and listen to since her early days.
  22. Oct 26, 2012
    70
    Khan has truly emerged as one of modern pop's most thrilling voices. Steeped in references? Perhaps, but Khan's own spirit of invention and emotional wisdom are through lines which make The Haunted Man a singular journey.
  23. Oct 24, 2012
    70
    The Haunted Man is defined by a more refined sensibility, drawing back the playful clatter of her first two albums in favour of sparser arrangements and a slightly elegiac tone.
  24. Oct 23, 2012
    70
    The Haunted Man is mostly a collection of fairly elementary meditations on the heart, but, without a doubt, there is still thunder in Natasha's soul.
  25. Oct 23, 2012
    70
    The visions here seem all her own. And they're pretty awesome.
  26. Oct 19, 2012
    70
    While the album's comparatively restrained arrangements occasionally wilt in the face of Khan's fierce melodrama, The Haunted Man is still a worthy, often gorgeous entry in the Bat for Lashes canon.
  27. Oct 17, 2012
    70
    For the most part this is a composed, nourishing pop album.
  28. Oct 15, 2012
    70
    This effort is laudable, but she sounds best when pushing the envelope. A lively talent like hers shouldn't be so concealed.
  29. Oct 12, 2012
    70
    The Haunted Man she's exorcised some of those ghosts and gone some way to becoming her own woman. [Nov 2012, p.70]
  30. Oct 16, 2012
    67
    Her moody charisma and piercing vocals ensure the album is still an enjoyable listen. All the same, it's disappointing that The Haunted Man's beauty is too often only skin deep.
  31. Oct 23, 2012
    60
    On The Haunted Man, Khan continues to pursue a similar approach to combining ambition and concision, but, unfortunately, the result is a disappointingly tepid album.
  32. Oct 16, 2012
    60
    While The Haunted Man is an impressive record, one heavy with earnestness and polished sophistication, it's more like The Tin Man: somehow it lacks a heart.
  33. Oct 15, 2012
    60
    While every track on The Haunted Man is brimming with invention, there's little to keep you coming back for repeat listens.
  34. 60
    Sometimes the recurrent mood of ecstatic affirmation of life that's evident in her singing can be short-changed by arrangements that fuss to no great purpose, dissipating their impact in brittle beats and pointless detail.
  35. Oct 15, 2012
    60
    The Haunted Man is an assured and sonically seductive record--if only it didn't echo a little too often the sound of other women's work.
  36. Oct 12, 2012
    60
    ADespite occasionally drawing blood, The Haunted Man doesn't live up to its stripped and dangerous cover, often retreating to gambol about in the backwaters of Khan's imagination.
User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 70 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. Oct 23, 2012
    10
    A wonderful album which introduces new sounds in Bat For Lashes' music. In this record Khan leaves behind tribal-dark atmospheres to embraceA wonderful album which introduces new sounds in Bat For Lashes' music. In this record Khan leaves behind tribal-dark atmospheres to embrace minimal electronic (except for "Horses of The Sun", a track that reminds of "Glass" from her previous album "Two Suns"). If you've loved Gotye's "Somebody That I Used to Know", you can't not listen to "All Your Gold" and of you like Tori Amos you must listen to "Laura". Listen to it and you will not be able to stop 'til it's finished! Full Review »
  2. Oct 17, 2013
    10
    Amazing. Every song is fantastic. Natasha is uber-talented............................................................................................
  3. Apr 13, 2013
    10
    Outstanding album. I love how the album sounds. All the songs are great. She is an outstanding songwriter. I can't stop listening to theOutstanding album. I love how the album sounds. All the songs are great. She is an outstanding songwriter. I can't stop listening to the album. Dream pop and electronic Great album to listen to at night or while you write. I listen to this album a lot while I'm on the train or bus. I actually like this album more than her other two albums l Full Review »