User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 6 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 0 out of 6

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  1. Feb 4, 2011
    10
    For some reason, every time The Get Up Kids release a new album, people are surprised that it doesn't sound like Something to Write Home About. Maybe that was understandable in 2002, back when On a Wire made the shift from energetic power pop to a more alternative sound, but now more than ten years on from the release of the band's seminal 90's album, there isn't really an excuse. Now fiveFor some reason, every time The Get Up Kids release a new album, people are surprised that it doesn't sound like Something to Write Home About. Maybe that was understandable in 2002, back when On a Wire made the shift from energetic power pop to a more alternative sound, but now more than ten years on from the release of the band's seminal 90's album, there isn't really an excuse. Now five albums in, no two Get Up Kids records have sounded the same, while at the same time always sounding like a "Get Up Kids album."

    So when I say that There Are Rules is likely the best thing the band has put out to this point, don't take that to mean that it's any kind of return to Something to Write Home About. I never imagined I'd be thankful for the band's dissolution in 2005, but clearly the three years apart working on vastly different musical projects (Spoon, The New Amsterdams, Blackpool Lights, Reggie and the Full Effect) has grown each of them as musicians. The result is a band that sounds like it's having fun again, in a way that hasn't come through this loudly since Four Minute Mile. It's wildly experimental at times, but it never stops being a Get Up Kids album.

    In all reality, the Get Up Kids are the best of the "high school bands," because they're the one that grows with you. It's depressing to see bands like the Ataris making a desperate return to their old sound after fans rejected the wildly different (but promising) "Welcome the Night." Nobody wants to see guys in their late-30's trying desperately to sound like they did in their early twenties so kids in high school will like them again.

    Thankfully, there's nothing desperate about "There Are Rules." If anything, it's openly defiant. The album closer, "Rememorable," reads as pre-written response to their detractors, ending with a simple decree: "You've got it all so wrong/Why don't you go away?"
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Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Dec 7, 2011
    80
    On There Are Rules, the Get Up Kids never sound like they're trying to relearn how to do what they do: they manage the deceptively difficult trick of evolving without turning into something else, and they've made a powerful, engaging album that's worthy of their legacy.
  2. May 2, 2011
    60
    Their fifth long-player finds them back at their corrosive best. [Apr 2011, p.102]
  3. Apr 22, 2011
    60
    Nothing here feels contrived. Instead we witness a rare thing: an inherently youthful band gracefully making good into their thirties. [Apr 2011, p.106]