Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. May 14, 2012
    80
    As far as songcraft is concerned, this may be Benson's most consistent record, and What Kind of World will induce ecstasy in the faithful and shocked delight in newcomers.
  2. 80
    It reasserts Benson's standing as one of America's greatest songwriters.
  3. Apr 24, 2012
    75
    The new set, Benson's fifth, is as solid as its predecessors.
  4. May 8, 2012
    70
    This thoroughly enjoyable release does include one surprising blast of brass.
  5. Apr 30, 2012
    70
    His fans will lap this up for being another solid Brendan Benson album.
  6. Apr 26, 2012
    70
    What makes What Kind Of World Benson's best album since 2002's Lapalco is the varied nature of the songs. [Mar 2012, p.76]
  7. Apr 26, 2012
    70
    This is as dynamic a record as Benson has ever made, but trades some of the homespun charm and young hunger of his earlier work for a more expensive-sounding studio sheen.
  8. Apr 26, 2012
    70
    Those who credit Benson with the poppier side of the sonic stew cooked up by the Raconteurs can probably make a pretty good case for that notion based on his solo outings, and What Kind of World is no exception.
  9. Apr 19, 2012
    70
    To make the perfect album, we suppose, that elusive thing that the beauteous hooks on "The Light of F=Day" and "Met Your Match" certainly makes strides toward. [#86, p.53]
  10. Apr 24, 2012
    62
    Largely devoid of lyrical texture and detail, the universe conjured by World often feels bland to a fault.
  11. Apr 24, 2012
    60
    Makes a perfect case for music as therapy. [May 2012, p.91]
  12. 60
    Through '70s power pop and honey-soaked, AM radio vocals, Benson offers a worthy argument to view him as a peer rather than a protégé to Mr. White.
  13. Apr 20, 2012
    60
    Benson's fifth solo album rarely deviates from his established modus operandi. [May 2012, p.67]
  14. Apr 19, 2012
    60
    What Kind of World won't cause the goodwill to dry up, but it never reaches the heights of 2002's Lapalco, still Benson's high-water mark.
  15. Apr 24, 2012
    50
    Polished, tuneful, and utterly unmemorable.
  16. Apr 23, 2012
    50
    The romantic air around the self-defeating, love-seeking male feels out of place for a songwriter of Benson's talent and maturity, and as a result What Kind of World falls well short of being the kind of great pop record it could be.
  17. Apr 23, 2012
    50
    A strangely rockist album that ignores the importance of hooks and melodies and then makes the mistake of equating lo-fi production with seriousness.

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