Unsound

Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
Buy On
  1. Jul 9, 2012
    90
    Mission of Burma follow no rules other than following their collective vision wherever it leads, and their musical wanderlust has resulted in one of the most exciting and eye-opening albums they've made to date.
  2. Alternative Press
    Jul 3, 2012
    60
    Unsound falters on ragged tune such as "Sectionals In Mourning" and "Semi-Pseudo-Sort-Of-Plan;" these songs feel far too much like half-finished rehearsal takes that could use some tightening. [Aug 2012, p.92]
  3. Jul 17, 2012
    80
    Everything is pushed harder, faster and into more extreme corners on Unsound, and, remarkably, the band seems to get tighter and more impactful as things become more difficult.
  4. Jul 9, 2012
    75
    With Unsound, Conley, Miller and Prescott have now made four good to great albums since returning from a two-decade hiatus.
  5. Jul 11, 2012
    80
    For all of their individual, conflicting quirks, Miller et al. operate like some strange musical beast, spitting out hooks and devouring them with brute force.
  6. Aug 10, 2012
    74
    Despite its democratic structure, Unsound suffers from a curious sequencing problem, or what we around here like to call Channel Orange-itis--but few bands of their vintage continue to write songs this prolifically or professionally.
  7. 80
    The band's latest album, Unsound, demonstrates an awareness of this dichotomy, presenting 11 tracks focused on devil-may-care exploration by a band as cohesive and musically established as any act working today.
  8. Jul 9, 2012
    80
    It's one of the best rock albums of the year and shows there's no age limit on kicking up dust and splitting ear drums.
  9. Jul 5, 2012
    70
    Mission of Burma have successfully walked that fine line between being consistent and running out of ideas.
  10. Jul 11, 2012
    80
    Mission of Burma continue to create inspired, groove-laden post-rock that threatens to overshadow the acts they've influenced at every turn.
  11. Mojo
    Jul 19, 2012
    80
    MOB sound as electrifying, as curious and as awake as they ever have. [Aug 2012, p.96]
  12. Jul 3, 2012
    80
    Unsound is a smile-inducing slab of post-punk awesome.
  13. 80
    Shellac's Bob Weston throws disorientating tape-loop curveballs throughout, further disturbing Burma's thrilling clatter, which shames bands half their age.
  14. Jul 12, 2012
    70
    Unsound is, in many ways, their best work since Vs.
  15. Jul 3, 2012
    82
    Mission of Burma continues to make some truly glorious noise on Unsound.
  16. Jul 11, 2012
    77
    There's not a weak second to be found.
  17. Jul 12, 2012
    60
    Unsound is simply the sound of a band retreading what it did 30 years ago, even if they put conscious effort into making a few distinct changes to how their sound was delivered.
  18. Q Magazine
    Aug 1, 2012
    60
    The neurotic twists and nuances that made 1982's Vs so electrifying are still apparent... further confirmation that Mission of Burma have no intention of either burning out or fading away. [Aug 2012, p.104]
  19. Jul 26, 2012
    70
    Unsound booms with veteran heat and chops, folding in weird trumpet parts, weirder harmonies, tumbling drums and smart punk riffs, praising hi-fi and dissing tiny sounds.
  20. Jul 10, 2012
    67
    Unsound continues that cranky streak with little variation, but where the previous comeback albums have roared, Unsound feels dull, uneven, and a little bored.
  21. Jul 6, 2012
    90
    [Unsound] is as rough, ragged and wracked as they've ever been, the likes of 'Dust Devil' and '7's' pushing needles thoroughly into the red.
  22. Jul 6, 2012
    80
    This exuberant fifth album again shows they're still a force to be reckoned with, while stretching their tuneful, time-signature-shifting style ever further.
  23. Jul 24, 2012
    90
    Mission Of Burma are excellent, their new album is equally excellent, and an easy contender for best rock album of the year.
  24. The Wire
    Jul 24, 2012
    70
    It's hardly an essential record; more a reminder of past possibilities, really, than something that points toward the future. [Jul 2012, p.60]
  25. Jul 13, 2012
    70
    While acting more like a well-constructed argument than a manifesto, Unsound shows that you can still fight into the later years.
  26. Uncut
    Jul 3, 2012
    80
    Unsound is a corker, sounding fresh and full of great hooks and ideas. [Aug 2012, p.77]
  27. Jul 12, 2012
    70
    The brash, lo-fi production on Unsound is still classic Burma; sounds collide and overrun each other in a manner that feels as carefully-crafted as it does slipshod.
User Score
8.0

Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Aug 29, 2012
    9
    I love these guys; they seeming incapable of making a bad record. This one is more varied sonically, yet still sounds 100% MOB. I especiallyI love these guys; they seeming incapable of making a bad record. This one is more varied sonically, yet still sounds 100% MOB. I especially like 'Dust Devil' and 'Second Television', but the whole album is engaging and high energy. It's different enough that you can't say you've heard it before; yeah you need it. Full Review »
  2. Jul 17, 2012
    10
    Another great MOB album, ho-hum. I get a certain type of aural pleasure from listening to a new MOB album that I don't get from any of myAnother great MOB album, ho-hum. I get a certain type of aural pleasure from listening to a new MOB album that I don't get from any of my other albums. They have really perfected post-punk, but at the same time have created this unique sound that nobody could ever copy. What other band has three band members consisting of a drummer, bassist, and guitarist that trades off lead singing duties from song to song with each member owning a unique, perfect voice for the genre? None, in my estimation. Oh yeah, they also together create wonderful vocal harmonies. And the instruments? Do you like idiosyncratic drumming, angular guitar riffs, strange tape manipulations, an overall sonic attack that creates a highly original noise, yet oddly catchy tunes? This is rock music that creates brain cells. I do like this album more than their last also-great album The Sound, The Speed, The Light but not quite as much as Vs., OnOffOn, or The Obliterati. The biggest gripe I have over this one is that it clocks in at only 35 minutes. 2-3 more songs probably would have made this one just as good as their best ones. Full Review »