Boston Globe's Scores

For 1,752 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 66% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 31% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 City of Refuge
Lowest review score: 10 Lulu
Score distribution:
1,752 music reviews
    • 96 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Where “good kid” was a perceptive look at Lamar’s adolescence in a small part of Los Angeles, Butterfly is a weary assessment of his adulthood, and a world that’s bigger, more complex, and more flawed that he knew. If the albums share anything, it’s that they’re both cinematic. But the movie Lamar is shooting now puts the current era into a more fitting frame.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Backed by his new band the Vanguard, to whom the album is jointly credited, his sprawling funk grooves and pointed (if characteristically indecipherable) lyrics are still strikingly timely.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    For all of the gussy rhythms--which can stop just this side of overly cute--and legit power, there’s real subtlety at work, too, and in unlikely spots.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Maybe it's not surprising that My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is so seamlessly his personal best.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Heard in its complete, unruly, sometimes crazed glory, Miles at the Fillmore shows just how furious the evolutionary pace of his music was at this point.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The highs wouldn’t feel so high without the lows here, which is a regular trope of the genre; but as with all tropes, execution trumps invention, and the Hotelier executes exceptionally.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Compton MC's long-awaited major label debut is a breakthrough, as he both resurrects and reinvents West Coast hip-hop.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Guitar Song comes grouped in two parts, a "Black Album" and a "White Album," structured, according to Johnson, as a progressive movement from a dark and sordid beginning to a reassuring and redemptive end. That structure isn't always discernable in listening. What is immediately evident, though, is that this is a phenomenal collection of country music.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Thrilling and joyous, fierce and focused, the women sound like they’re having the time of their lives sinking their teeth back into the music together.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The album bubbles over with insidious grooves, inventive samples, and lissome rhyming about things frivolous and fraught.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Apple has been here before, but it makes her new album no less arresting.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Less glitchy and bass-led than FlyLo’s previous work, it enters him in the canon of mystics and psychedelic journeyers who’ve sought to crack the doors of perception.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s among her finest work in a 35-year career, assured and at ease, and one of 2014’s first great albums.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not quite of this world and not quite over the edge, these earthy, epic songs aren't meant to save us, only to supply some monumental crescendos and a wide-screen view on the way down.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    You barely detect it at first, but something miraculous happens on Arcade Fire's revelatory third album. The songs breathe--occasionally in long exhales, sometimes in staccato gasps.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Suffice to say that if you have enjoyed Griffin's repertoire of considered and emotionally precise songs -- as fans from the Dixie Chicks to Solomon Burke to Jessica Simpson have -- you will find your life enriched by "Children Running Through."
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Her latest album marks yet another sea change, a clanging, clamoring work of art that's as disturbing as it is moving. Let England Shake is staggering, from its seasick melodies to its visceral imagery of soldiers falling like "lumps of meat."
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    "Emma" was gorgeous in its austerity, but its follow-up is staggering for its vision. Bon Iver's self-titled sophomore release will go down as one of this year's most arresting albums, drunk on its own impressionistic charms and oblivious to anyone's expectations but Vernon's.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Halcyon Digest is as comforting in its familiar feel as it is startling for its sonic variety.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    His latest is the closest he has come to making a masterpiece in a very long time.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Much like a riveting movie keeps you in your seat, you’ll want to pay close attention to Joanna Newsom’s astonishing new album for fear of missing too much of the plot.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Tomorrow’s Harvest is as strong a return to form as it is stunning an update, with the Scottish duo refining their blend of nostalgic sonics and futuristic sheen.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A set of 12 songs overflowing with bile and sonic invention.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Trouble Will Find Me is the Brooklyn, N.Y., indie-rock band’s sixth and most deft album yet, a haunted and lugubrious meditation on loss and despair.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's untamed, topsy-turvy, elliptical - and one of the most exciting albums I've heard all year.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With eight songs that unfurl to 40 minutes, it’s impeccably crafted and plays off a mercurial tension between Callahan’s voice--a parched yet resonant baritone--and the lush arrangements that envelop it.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It’s a tour de force. The work’s relentless, odd-accented, propulsive rhythms are a perfect fit for this band.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Haunting, jarring, and oddly beautiful, Soused defies the idea of “easy listening,” but its singular vision and harnessing of the avant-garde makes it one of the year’s most compelling artistic statements.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is industrial-strength Beach House with its hallmarks intact, just bigger and better. With co-producer Chris Coady, Legrand and Scally lift some of the haze that has often enveloped their music...now the band has given us this year’s first classic album.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This sensual song suite about the ephemeral nature of love and what it takes to sustain happiness should end up among this year’s finest efforts.