We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank

  • Record Label: Sony
  • Release Date: Mar 20, 2007
User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 247 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 12 out of 247

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  1. DylanS
    May 30, 2007
    9
    Another quality release from Modest Mouse. A nice mix of the Good News and Moon and Antartica sound to create the second best release of their career and one of this years best. Don't be afraid of the accesibility of their sound, it's still Modest Mouse, just with exceptional song structure + Johnny Marr was a great addition.
  2. Djimi
    Jun 14, 2007
    10
    More pure quality from Modest Mouse. I think some critics are just being pathetic and trying to go against the grain by giving it mediocre reviews just because they've become popular and had good sales, 'cos it really is a great band on top form.
  3. JohnnyD
    Apr 26, 2007
    10
    Great record. There's so many hooks on this album, every track sounds like it could be a single.
  4. Jan 6, 2011
    7
    We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank has some really good tracks on it. Modest Mouse has made another solid album. The sound of it is a little different from their previous work "Good News For People Who Love Bad News". It sounds pretty good for the most part. My favorite song on the album is "Spitting Venom". Amazing song. And "Dashboard", "Little Motel", and "Fire It Up" are all greatWe Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank has some really good tracks on it. Modest Mouse has made another solid album. The sound of it is a little different from their previous work "Good News For People Who Love Bad News". It sounds pretty good for the most part. My favorite song on the album is "Spitting Venom". Amazing song. And "Dashboard", "Little Motel", and "Fire It Up" are all great tracks. All In All, a solid album with a handful of great tracks. B Expand
  5. EduardoA
    Feb 25, 2007
    8
    Good album, sometimes they start wandering around, but it's the least of the times. It's great to be able to hear a whole Modest Mouse album without feeling like something is just noisy and giving me an earache as it happened to me with 'Good news from people who love bad news'. P.S: 8 because the record sometimes seems overproduced.
  6. theboneykingofnowhere
    Mar 17, 2007
    7
    Blender: Is there another "Float On"? It scarcely matters: 10 years into their career, Modest Mouse have stumbled into their best album yet. Ok their seminal work is the Moon and Antarctica, hands down. This cd is ok but that's it, ok. I do think they have improved upon the sound that they developed for Good News however, I remember a time when Modest Mouse didn't need guest Blender: Is there another "Float On"? It scarcely matters: 10 years into their career, Modest Mouse have stumbled into their best album yet. Ok their seminal work is the Moon and Antarctica, hands down. This cd is ok but that's it, ok. I do think they have improved upon the sound that they developed for Good News however, I remember a time when Modest Mouse didn't need guest spots from James Mercer or that dude from the Flaming Lips on the last album to make an incredible album. Also, Isaac, what the hell happened to the whammy bar dude? Expand
  7. JeffV
    Mar 19, 2007
    9
    Yeah, it doesn't sound like Lonesome Crowded West, but that came out ten years ago. I've listened to WWDBTSES a lot in the past month. It seems to be a mix or GNFPWLBN and tM&A. There are a couple really catchy songs that you'll probably be hearing a lot on your college radio station, just like the last two albums. There are few of the bipolar songs that sound more like a Yeah, it doesn't sound like Lonesome Crowded West, but that came out ten years ago. I've listened to WWDBTSES a lot in the past month. It seems to be a mix or GNFPWLBN and tM&A. There are a couple really catchy songs that you'll probably be hearing a lot on your college radio station, just like the last two albums. There are few of the bipolar songs that sound more like a medly of two songs than one unified track, but they are also some of the best tracks on the album. The presence of Marr is felt, but doesn't distract. I was kinda disappointed by their last album, so I was skeptical. I'm glad I was proven wrong. This is right up there with LCW and tM&A. It will be on lots of top ten lists in December. Expand
  8. JCCaird
    Mar 8, 2007
    10
    Fantastic album. Stand out tracks are "Parting of the Sensory" and "Spitting Venom".
  9. SeanC
    Jun 20, 2007
    9
    I loved it. At first I felt it was a little..... easier than the other albums Mouse has done, as Good News for People Who Love Bad News was. After giving it a week or two it found it's way back on my playlist, again, just like Good News.
  10. JamesboF.
    Jun 27, 2007
    10
    This album is so damn catchy. It reminds me of 80s new wave-it has that vibe-and almost every song is great. It's just so catchy and perfectly set up. I love this album!
  11. LainieR
    Feb 16, 2007
    10
    Yesssss
  12. AndrewC
    Feb 16, 2007
    10
    Finally it leaked
  13. Albert
    Feb 27, 2007
    10
    I love the part that makes me smile!
  14. Patty
    Feb 27, 2007
    10
    If you like this album you are a good person
  15. NikolasJ
    Mar 11, 2007
    10
    I've read some reviews that claim the new Modest Mouse album sounds rushed, as if Brock was just trying to satisfy a contract, but I highly disagree. To me, it's an angry album, no doubt, but a great album nonetheless. "We were dead" is about not growing and/or learning from mistakes. It's about not feeling trapped by history, and that speaks to Mouse's listeners on I've read some reviews that claim the new Modest Mouse album sounds rushed, as if Brock was just trying to satisfy a contract, but I highly disagree. To me, it's an angry album, no doubt, but a great album nonetheless. "We were dead" is about not growing and/or learning from mistakes. It's about not feeling trapped by history, and that speaks to Mouse's listeners on many levels. The album is speaking to the people who are constantly upset they don't sound like "Lonesome Crowded West" anymore as well as any listeners who feels upset with their own life but does nothing to change it. It's a brilliantly angry album, and rightfully so. Everyone, including your favorite band, has to change if they mean to make any progress. People who want the same thing repeated, in music or life, are not going to grow, and that's who they are speaking to. The album is sharp, and Brock & company are as acute as always. They are growing and have accepted the fact that some of their earliest fans may not grow with them, but they're at peace with that. After all, we all know the tragedy of history repeating itself. Expand
  16. ZayneF
    Mar 17, 2007
    10
    This album is flawless. It revisits almost all of the periods theyve gone through, and adds more texture to the sound. Each song has its purpose, and each song serves that purpose.
  17. LucasK
    Mar 17, 2007
    7
    it's alright. not that good or not that bad. Only bad thing is that... IT's so damn dancy, I mean, listen to that beat...
  18. OliverC
    Mar 18, 2007
    10
    This album is outstanding. A great follow up to good news. I would say a good deal better than arcade fire's neon bible (if for some reason you want to compare the two.)
  19. ChrisC
    Mar 19, 2007
    8
    WWDBTSES is Modest Mouse's most dense and clamorous album yet, for sure... it pulls you in and then moves forward with power, all push and shove. The only thing this album lacks is some of the quiet thoughtfulness found on Good News and even more prominent on The Moon and Antarctica. Towards the end of the album, I find myself craving the beauty and humility of songs like "Gravity WWDBTSES is Modest Mouse's most dense and clamorous album yet, for sure... it pulls you in and then moves forward with power, all push and shove. The only thing this album lacks is some of the quiet thoughtfulness found on Good News and even more prominent on The Moon and Antarctica. Towards the end of the album, I find myself craving the beauty and humility of songs like "Gravity Rides Everything", "Lives", or "Blame It On The Tetons", and this desire is never quite met. Expand
  20. Myles
    Mar 19, 2007
    7
    It is put together quite well, but it's not the same Mouse I've come to know. This is over the hill Modest Mouse. I understand how they all need to pay their electric bills and I do think it sounds great, but it lacks intensity and those amazing lyrics that make you wonder and you have to think long and hard about what he's saying, instead of repeating the same chorus about It is put together quite well, but it's not the same Mouse I've come to know. This is over the hill Modest Mouse. I understand how they all need to pay their electric bills and I do think it sounds great, but it lacks intensity and those amazing lyrics that make you wonder and you have to think long and hard about what he's saying, instead of repeating the same chorus about 4 times. Expand
  21. DanM
    Mar 21, 2007
    7
    I've been nervous about this album for months. I'm one of the few long time fans who actually enjoyed "Good News...", specifically "Ocean Breathes Salty." Still, I felt it to be the weakest of their albums mainly do to less interesting and challenging lyrics, which were always the highlight of the band to me. Ironically, the poppier songs had better lyrics than most of the I've been nervous about this album for months. I'm one of the few long time fans who actually enjoyed "Good News...", specifically "Ocean Breathes Salty." Still, I felt it to be the weakest of their albums mainly do to less interesting and challenging lyrics, which were always the highlight of the band to me. Ironically, the poppier songs had better lyrics than most of the more "traditional" Modest Mouse songs. Strangely, that holds on this album as well. The music is far more accessible than ever before... meaning that it isn't as experimental and inspiring as say "Lonesome Crowded West" and "Antarctica and the Moon." Still, Brock writes some amazing songs on this album that are honest, poignant, intelligent, and intoxicating enjoyable that nearly top that of their penultimate "Antarctica and the Moon." I feel if this album had the brilliant music work of "Lonesome Crowded West" instead of what ended up here, it would probably be by far their best album. Sadly, that is an impossibility. The music itself isn't bad per sé, but it just seems to lack the true essence of Modest Mouse. They don't seem to be even trying anymore in that area anymore outside of "Invisible", "Steam Ingenius," and "Spitting Venom." Still, Isaac Brock proves once again that he can arrange words to form one amazing song... lyrically at least. Expand
  22. NigelB
    Mar 20, 2007
    10
    Fantastic, Modest Mouse delivered everything I had been anticipating for and possibly more. Enough new twists to keep me interested, but not too many to distance me from their sound.
  23. MichaelK
    Mar 21, 2007
    8
    For all the die-hard Modest Mouse fans who cringed at the success of "Float On," do yourself a favor and please don't just write this album off. All the elements are here that make Modest Mouse what they are- Brock's charismatic growl, clever wordplay and lyrics, the obtuse and the catchy always warring with each other, and even a hint of "Moon and Antarctica" style darkness. For all the die-hard Modest Mouse fans who cringed at the success of "Float On," do yourself a favor and please don't just write this album off. All the elements are here that make Modest Mouse what they are- Brock's charismatic growl, clever wordplay and lyrics, the obtuse and the catchy always warring with each other, and even a hint of "Moon and Antarctica" style darkness. Sure, it may be hummable enough to drive away the elitists, and off-kilter enough to alienate some casual listeners, yet that was what Modest Mouse have always been- they never sit easy, and it's this that makes them unique. Sure to be one of the best indie-rock releases of this year. So you know, however, this comes from a MM fan who considers "Good News" to be their best album ;) ... Expand
  24. MattA
    Mar 20, 2007
    10
    Listened to it on my way home from work... and loved it on my first listen. ...its not too often i like a whole CD on its first run through. haha... and it struck even more of a chord knowing Johnny Marr, and James Mercer helped make this possible. Kudos.
  25. BenA
    Mar 20, 2007
    10
    Actually, this one is much more like "lonesome crowded west" than anything else they have done. The return of their original drummer I think helped them get back to their daring and explorational roots. Spitting Venom is pure old-school modest mouse. All these morons crying about how modest mouse sold out need to shut up. This album is not any more accessible than their early work. Modest Actually, this one is much more like "lonesome crowded west" than anything else they have done. The return of their original drummer I think helped them get back to their daring and explorational roots. Spitting Venom is pure old-school modest mouse. All these morons crying about how modest mouse sold out need to shut up. This album is not any more accessible than their early work. Modest Mouse always wrote catchy songs. What about "Heart Cooks Brain"? That one's insanely catchy, and then they masterfully put together "dashboard" which is denser and more detailed, but get shot at for getting too mainstream?? please. Modest Mouse are following their own artistic curve, experimenting with new instrumentation and production techniques, but all you naysayers forget that modest mouse always wrote a mean catch pop tune, and thats why we all liked them in the first place. This is yet another great album from a great band. A+ Expand
  26. LukeH
    Mar 24, 2007
    10
    How many other bands have been around for over a decade and have never released a bad album? Fucking Great.
  27. jm
    Mar 24, 2007
    8
    I didn't expect to like this album as much as I do. it has the mainstream qualities of good news but the sound is much more reminiscent of their older work, of which I have been a long-time fan. if there is anything wrong with the album, is that modest mouse stays in their comfort zone, instead of trying to be a little out-there, which means there aren't really any awful tracks, I didn't expect to like this album as much as I do. it has the mainstream qualities of good news but the sound is much more reminiscent of their older work, of which I have been a long-time fan. if there is anything wrong with the album, is that modest mouse stays in their comfort zone, instead of trying to be a little out-there, which means there aren't really any awful tracks, but nothing incredible either. also I don't really like the affectation isaac brok's voice picked up on good news, but that comes and goes on the disc. overall a suprise album for a long-time fan. Expand
  28. AndrewK
    Mar 2, 2007
    9
    March Into The Sea: 9.0 Dashboard: 8.0 Parting of The Sensory: 10. (Very diverse.) Florida: 7.0 (Meh.) Fire It Up: 8.5 Missed The Boat: 10 (Very fun.) We've Got Everything: 7.0. (Meh.) Little Motel: 10 (Relaxing and calm.) Fly Trapped In A Jar: Unconfirmed. Education: 9.0 Steam Engenius: 8.0 Spitting Venom: Unconfirmed. People As Places As People: 8.5 Invisible: 10 (Great ending.)
  29. matto
    Mar 20, 2007
    8
    Great record all around. Sure, some of the songs try a little to hard to be the next FLOAT ON, but others are very true to their roots. Best effort they have made in a while.
  30. ClaytonS
    Mar 30, 2007
    9
    Another great Modest Mouse album!
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 38 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 38
  2. Negative: 0 out of 38
  1. Blender
    90
    Is there another "Float On"? It scarcely matters: 10 years into their career, Modest Mouse have stumbled into their best album yet. [Mar 2007, p.137]
  2. Under The Radar
    90
    Not just an album that revisits the dancey guitar-pop that made "Float On" an unlikely #1 hit, but sharpens and emboldens it for their most accessible album to date. [#16, p.93]
  3. Like everything the band has released since signing with Epic in the teeth of a millennial panic, it's louder and somewhat less twisty than the group's indie output.