The Outsiders - Eric Church
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Universal acclaim - based on 11 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 18 Ratings

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  • Summary: The fourth full-length studio release for the country rock artist was produced by Jay Joyce.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 11
  2. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. Feb 11, 2014
    On his fourth studio album, the terrifyingly creative The Outsiders, Eric Church pulls off what so many before him have tried: successfully merging the bedrock sounds of country music (plinking banjo, crying Dobro and a Hank Williams twang) with those of seemingly disparate genres like rock, heavy metal and especially R&B to create an utterly unique product.
  2. 100
    Mostly he surprises, whether rapping in "That's Damn Rock & Roll" or constructing "Roller Coaster Ride" like its name, driving to a chorus so suddenly airy you can feel your stomach drop. As with all of The Outsiders' thrills, it's both thumpingly obvious and exquisitely executed.
  3. Feb 10, 2014
    Mostly, this is the kind of record critics imagine Kanye keeps making: a freakish statement of confidence and power from an artist in full command of his gifts.
  4. Feb 10, 2014
    The reckoning continues on the superb follow-up The Outsiders.
  5. 80
    Church gets to have it both ways on The Outsiders, writing several irresistible hits while boasting repeatedly to the press about the ten some-odd surefire number one singles he decided, alongside producer Jay Joyce, to not include on the album.
  6. Feb 21, 2014
    This might be cynicism, but pop music is as much about the sizzle as it is about the steak, and no one plays both ends against the middle as efficiently as Church.
  7. Feb 20, 2014
    An album with a radical spirit but a conservative heart.

See all 11 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Mar 20, 2014
    Here's a guy that is challenging contemporary country music. In a time when we usually listen to 'bro-country', Mr. Church decided to take the artistic way on his own. It's like he took "Chief" and figured out a way of how to take it to the next level, in his own terms, meaning in a rock and obscure kinda way. The thing about Church's work is that he has learned over the years how to translate his lyrics with the music. He makes it clear with the first single "The Outsiders" that he wants to set the difference between him and his contemporaries. Then he showcases his vulnerability in "A Man Who Was Gonna Die Young". And then he opens up about his artistry with tracks like "Cold One", "Broke Record", "That's Damn Rock & Roll" and the obscure "Devil, Devil (Prelude: Princess of Darkness)". And just in case you wanted a song reminiscent of his previous works, you have "Give Me Back My Hometown".
    With this album, Church set the bar for all the country artists releasing an album this year
  2. Jun 5, 2014
    Wow, this album is great, it ROCKS.
    He is a gifted songwriter with lots of talent. Those other wannabe rappers at Nashville should learn how
    a REAL ARTIST sounds like.
    I gave it a 9 only because "Devil, Devil" is a track I usually skip because of its lenght.
  3. May 28, 2014
    To call this album a mixed bag is a big understatement. While The Outsiders definitely has enough quality songs to be worthwhile (overlooking some of the cheesy pseudo-outlaw posturing), it also has its fair share of baffling clunkers, and the way it shifts so drastically in feel from track to track makes this one of the least focused albums I've heard in a while.

    (To see a more in-depth track-by-track review, look up "Spin It! Reviews" on YouTube.)