The Wondershow Of The World Image
Metascore
80

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 7 Ratings

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  • Summary: This is Will Oldham's first Bonnie "Prince" Billy album to credit the Cairo Gang, who performed on the previous three Billy albums.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. The record is an achingly beautiful paean to companionship, whether musical or romantic, but it also embraces the mess of togetherness.
  2. More than most Bonnie "Prince" Billy records, this is one of those austere records, filled with lyrical archaisms -- fans will think first of Master and Everyone -- but Kelly and company prove a capable foil for the monolith of Oldham's rustic songwriting and singing.
  3. The Wonder Show of the World turns over life's topsoil to find the truths beneath. [May 2010, p.122]
  4. The record's songs maintain Oldham's characteristic simplicity and sparseness that hearken back to the now ancient songs of American music's past. All the while, this familiarly fresh set of arrangements gives Oldham's restless phrasings the virgin textures upon which to project cryptic and fearless lyrics.
  5. Dec 21, 2010
    75
    The Wonder Show of the World, his eleventh release in half as many years, is everything for which we hope in a new Bonnie "Prince" Billy release: creeping yet expansive alt-folk; an ever-strengthening voice; erotic imagery ("The smell of your box on my mustache") paired with thoughts on family, never uncomfortably; a stark, doodled cover; a doting collaboration.
  6. This is arguably Oldham's most austere record to date, but there's much to dig into.
  7. It's not quite diminishing returns, but more a sense that Oldham's going round in decreasing circles.

See all 14 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of
  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of