To The Races - Eric Bachmann
To The Races Image

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

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Universal acclaim- based on 6 Ratings

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  • Summary: This is the second solo outing for the former Archers Of Loaf and Crooked Fingers frontman.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. 92
    You want this album. [#21, p.98]
  2. Most of To The Races is arresting and alive, filled with little moments--a snaky violin, a warm harmonica, a lilting melody--that serve as reminders of how important the concept of "performance" can be.
  3. The sound is closer to the Boss' Nebraska--as Will Oldham would have done it--haunting, reflective and drowning in sorrow. [Oct 2006, p.200]
  4. In spite of its flaws, To the Races charms with its somber atmosphere.
  5. Gone is the orchestral saturation that sometimes bogged down Crooked Fingers, replaced by gnomic acoustic folk that's stark to the point of nudity. [Oct 2006, p.84]
  6. The main problem is that, after about seven tracks of this stuff, it grows a bit repetitive.
  7. 40
    Bachmann's gruff uniformity is, in the end, difficult to love. [Dec 2006, p.101]

See all 14 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 5
  2. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. DanielL
    Oct 4, 2006
    A kind of songwriting that just plain doesn't exist anymore. Half 1930's range balladeer, half somber meditation. The bare presentation is a reflection of the album's honesty, and the density of the cello, violin, and backing vocals are like an ocean, upon which you can float, feeling emotionally empowered just by listening. Truly wonderful and unique. Expand
  2. JohnN
    Sep 1, 2006
    A stellar and moody performance. Bachmann stripped away noise moving from the legendary Archers of Loaf, to the folktacular Crooked Fingers, but this album is even more minamalistic than CF. The lyrics are powerful and intimate, yet still empty. Nobody can make a cliche mean as many different things as Bachmann. Man-O-War is chilling and captivating, while the title track invokes feelings of a Gypsy carnival under a barely crimson sky. A incredible journey. Expand
  3. [Anonymous]
    Aug 27, 2006
    The evolution of Eric Bachmann as one of the great songwriters in recent years continues... on par with his best work and destined to become a classic! Standout tracks include the staggeringly intense "Man O' War" and the poignant "Carrboro Woman." Expand
  4. StevenG
    Sep 6, 2006
    This really is a powerful album.
  5. JeremyF
    Sep 14, 2007
    OK. While "Man O' War" is on my top 10 songs of 2006, this album as a whole is nothing spectacular. Some very good guitar playing throughout, and soft, easy-listening vocals are enchanting, but the songs blur into a plodding-along feel, and it can't keep my pinned for longer than two or three songs. Despite the one breathtakingly magnificent number, this album fails to capture me the way intimate acoustic records should. Expand