• Record Label: Woodsist
  • Release Date: Apr 15, 2014
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. Apr 14, 2014
    80
    The album is easily the most solid offering from the Woods camp to date, besting even the production of its incredibly strong predecessor and presenting the songs with even more clarity and interesting choices than ever before.
  2. May 1, 2014
    67
    A few moments of woozy, crystal-strewn guitar, and we're right back where we left them.
  3. Apr 15, 2014
    80
    The band’s tendency to venture into festival-ready rhythms and guitar noodling has remained an integral constant on their releases. With Light And With Love is no exception, but it also finds the band exercising their unique roots-pop expertise to an even deeper effect than before.
  4. 58
    While With Light and With Love might sound more instantly accessible than previous Woods albums, it also shows that it might not be a good thing for Woods to tinker with their most defining quality: the intimacy of their songs.
  5. Apr 14, 2014
    60
    What With Light And With Love lacks in surprises, it more than makes up for with quality.
  6. Apr 14, 2014
    70
    Long-time listeners will revel in the subtle sonic shifts but the rest of us are still waiting for the band to make that major artistic breakthrough we know they're capable of.
  7. Apr 15, 2014
    76
    In 2014, Woods still stand tall, having morphed from a lo-fi weirdo electric folk band on their own fringe label into a veritable lighthouse on the now populous independent coast.
  8. Apr 23, 2014
    80
    Adroit instrumentation and elegant melodies from the NY quartet. [May 2014, p.96]
  9. 80
    There’s a rare moment of foreboding on the briefly gloomy ‘Feather Man’, but the likes of ‘Shining’ and the Avi Buffalo-style ‘Only The Lonely’ are representative of an optimistic and sprightly record.
  10. Apr 15, 2014
    78
    Even the most drawn-out, mind-bending stretches on the album serve a purpose, managing to avoid sounding like sonic filler.
  11. Apr 14, 2014
    79
    “Breakthrough”, “masterpiece”, “bold leap”--those aren’t words that really seem applicable to With Light and With Love, or Woods for that matter, but they’re allowing themselves to be extremely likable for a larger crowd.
  12. Apr 16, 2014
    80
    Turns out that on this album you get to hear Woods in perhaps the purest form yet, even as you know that form will change again for the next record. Until then, embrace the bittersweet now.
  13. May 29, 2014
    60
    On the whole, Woods have produced an inviting, communal listen seemingly designed to soundtrack lazy summer afternoons.
  14. Apr 16, 2014
    80
    With Light and With Love sounds bigger, though, more accessible, conceived with an ear toward top-down, tear-out-of-town FM anthems of summers past.
  15. Apr 29, 2014
    82
    Mainstream baiting notwithstanding, With Light & With Love is the best Woods record yet, a tinkering of the charmingly sincere folksiness of Bend Beyond into something even more muscular and full-bodied.
  16. Apr 14, 2014
    70
    As this year's laid-back, folk-tinged efforts go so far, Woods haven't quite packed the sort of emotional punch that, say, Beck did on Morning Phase, but they have provided further evidence that they're slowly emerging as masters of their mellow-pop craft.
  17. 80
    On With Light and With Love, Woods once again prove that they can casually strike the perfect balance between imaginative pop confections and untethered psychedelic jams.
  18. Apr 14, 2014
    80
    There's a mellow-late-Beatles vibe at play, especially on "Full Moon," and this may be the band's finest to date. [May 2014, p.83]
  19. May 9, 2014
    80
    Next to the digitized, future-slicked sounds of other latter-day psych totems such as Lonerism or Merriweather Post Pavilion, it feels like a reverent, immersive ramble through the corridors of lysergic pop history.
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. May 11, 2014
    7
    A very interesting album. It has great music that is diverse in style. Some tracks aren't so great (Twin Steps, Only the Lonely), but areA very interesting album. It has great music that is diverse in style. Some tracks aren't so great (Twin Steps, Only the Lonely), but are still okay. The vocal performance and Jeremy Earl's voice are serene, and they go well with the existential lyrics.

    My favorite tracks are: "Shining", "Moving to the Left", "New Light", and "Leaves Like Grass".
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 20, 2014
    10
    I came home with this new Woods CD - a band I have never heard of before which is strange because I really "dig" and search for new music andI came home with this new Woods CD - a band I have never heard of before which is strange because I really "dig" and search for new music and not just listen to what most people are fed on the radio - after reading good reviews for it on this site and on Pitchfork and sampling the songs on iTunes, I decided to pick it up today at Reckless Records (Chicago/London). I put it on when I got home, and having already read comparisons to George Harrison (among others) on the Reckless site, and my roomie comes out and says "Is that George Harrison?!" There are a few places on the album where the music, esp. the guitars sound a lot like how Harrison played the guitar. Woods singer, Jeremy Earl, has a peaceful, pleasant high-pitched voice which goes well with the beautiful melodies and existential poetic lyrics. I wish it had come with a lyric book, however, because this album really has songs that stay with you, and you're still humming them after you listen. It sorta reminds me of Real Estate's new album "Atlas" but I like this Woods album much better because it goes in more different directions. They're really do not have all that much of a unique sound, but I can honestly say I do not have another album in my collection that sounds like it or makes me feel the way I do when listening to it. I totally intend to turn my friends and family on to this album and band. The only downside is that I wish it was at least 10 minutes longer. Full Review »