The Idler Wheel Is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More than Ropes Will Ever Do Image

Universal acclaim - based on 35 Critics What's this?

User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 207 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: The singer-songwriter began recording her fourth studio album in secret in 2008 or 2009.
  • Record Label: Epic
  • Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, Alternative Pop/Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Alternative Singer/Songwriter
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. Jun 19, 2012
    It's essential 2012 listening for anyone interested in popular music as art.
  2. Jun 19, 2012
    The result is an album that was absolutely worth the seven-year wait, not to mention the mountain of hype atop which Apple has sat since her big comeback at SXSW in March.
  3. Jun 22, 2012
    Another singular album from a truly idiosyncratic voice, Apple has once again invited us into her lushly conflicted inner monologue.
  4. Jun 25, 2012
    In The Idler Wheel's ten phenomenal songs, Fiona Apple seems to lay everything out on the table.
  5. Dec 20, 2012
    It's an album that demands something of the listener, but rewards it in spades.
  6. Jun 25, 2012
    It's a hyper-vivid and intensely musical affair that takes us deep inside Apple's skittish, fretful mind. [Jul 2012, p.82]
  7. Jun 19, 2012
    Half of the album is magnificent, and stylistically contradistinct, while the other half exists in some offbeat and off-putting terrain that will either elude its listeners, or alienate them.

See all 35 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 44 out of 52
  2. Negative: 4 out of 52
  1. Jun 19, 2012
    I say with zero hesitation or exaggeration that this record is a masterpiece. Sometimes when I'm listening to the Idler Wheel I need to get up and punch the air and jump on top of things. I mean, it's an incredibly strong emotional and physical reaction. She has punched me in the gut and I'm still winded. Expand
  2. Oct 22, 2013
    This is actually one of my favourite albums of the year. It has everything from great songwriting, hard hitting personal lyrics, great instrumentation especially the percussion, and a voice which is so expressive and full of emotion. You can also tell that she experiments with her music and the sounds she's making but also sticks to her original signature sound that made her so great in the past. She's amazing! Expand
  3. Jun 22, 2012
    I know that almost everyone said that this is the "Album of the Year" and whatsoever, but honestly I just can't get into this kind of music.
    It's like she's just singing (or maybe just screaming or whining) to some random chords and notes with some tingling piano and percussion, and that's all. Nothing really "wow"-es me.

    But it still has some interesting sounds, though.
  4. Aug 29, 2012
    Great album! She hasn't publishing any CDs for seven years, but "The Idler Wheel..." (what a long title!) is worth the wait! With no exageration, I can easily say this is gonna be the best album of 2012 so far! Expand
  5. Jul 13, 2012
    It's not a easy album to listen and understand. But when it flows inside your head, you feel every and each intention of hers in each music. It's mesmerizing the way she sings, and the songwriting is the best since 'Tidal'. The only low points is the voice tone that is too much changeable. She remains bold and sharp for the (good) music industry. Best ones are "Hot Knife", "Every Single Night" and "Werewolf". Expand
  6. Jun 24, 2012
    After 7 years of waiting "The Idler Wheel..." released, and when you listened to it you get that it worth seven years of waiting. in her new album she's stronger and fearless than ever. it's more emotional and also her lyrics improved much more than her previous records but as same as her old stuff it's not easy to understand. welcome back Ms. Apple. Expand
  7. Jun 24, 2012
    THE IDLER... is one the most overrated albums that i counl hear in my entire life, its a completely waste of time try to understand every song that conposed this album, i love Fiona's interpretation but the album like a whole thing don't convince me, maybe is the meaningless lyrics or the awful and akward rithm, i cannot say more of this album, never will be a masterpiece like Adele's 21, recently named one of the best album ever play by a female singer, this is that i call a good album, I'm sorry Fiona, good luck to the next try. Expand

See all 52 User Reviews

Related Articles

  1. The Best Albums of 2012

    The Best Albums of 2012 Image
    Published: December 21, 2012
    Sure, it's no surprise that Frank Ocean had the best-reviewed album of 2012. But which other releases filled out our top 40? Get the full list inside ... and check out the year's worst-reviewed albums, too.
  2. 2012 Music Critic Top Ten Lists

    2012 Music Critic Top Ten Lists Image
    Published: December 4, 2012
    Over the next two months (as we do every year), we'll collect the individual year-end Top Ten lists published by over 100 major music critics, websites, and other publications. Check back daily, as we'll update the overall standings whenever new lists are published.
  3. Midyear Report: The Best Albums of 2012 So Far

    Midyear Report: The Best Albums of 2012 So Far Image
    Published: July 5, 2012
    With half of 2012 already in the books, we take a look at the best and worst albums released so far this year.