Checkout.com's Scores

  • Music
For 59 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 69% higher than the average critic
  • 0% same as the average critic
  • 31% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 73
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 59
  2. Negative: 1 out of 59
59 music reviews
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Songwriting and production throwbacks granted, the Apples send the repackage down a new stretch of road with full-throttle performances and the soon-to-be legendary pipes of singer Robert Schneider.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It's a sweeping, gorgeous masterwork that draws upon a collage of pop flavors from the last four decades, brightly burning the eternal singer/songwriter flame and touching down for a couple of power pop punches.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Moment for moment, there's not a more significant collection of songs to spend your life with...
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Making a record that delivers satisfaction from start to finish is a rare and momentous thing. Making any record that sounds unlike anything else is a victory in itself. To bring the two in line as Yo La Tengo has done with And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out may as well be called perfection.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Silver & Gold is as pretty an album as Young's created yet...
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There's a lot going on sonically with this album, but it feels cohesive -- all its disparate elements are beautifully brought together by O'Connor's overriding openness and passion.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    On Naked Self, Johnson hasn't let up one bit. His tongue is as sharp as ever, and his songs show that updating one's style doesn't have to mean dressing in this year's airwave fashions.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Her latest, I Am Shelby Lynne, is not a country record, but rather a graceful hybrid of roots rock influences and Muscle Shoals soul that adds up to one of the most intimate, earthy and adult pop-rock records in recent memory.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Suicides offers music that's even softer and more blurred around the edges than the band's previous efforts (Moon Safari and Premiers Symptomes), deftly meshing Bacharach-influenced progressions with martini lounge instrumentation for a mix that's retro-futuristic and smooth as, well, air.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Songs don't get any better than this, and with the exception of Elliott Smith, no one plays a sad song sweeter than Tweedy & Co. -- it's always a thrill to hear a band maturing into its prime.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Transcendental Blues epitomizes musical craftsmanship; it simmers instead of sizzles, meaning it's solid throughout and has no shortage of good songs... [w]hat is missing in the mix here is Earle at his angriest...
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    the album shows that the group has the power to whip audiences into a frenzy with beats and loops that feel remarkably organic and spontaneous.... Everything should be required listening for those who question the validity of electronic in a live format.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A complex, heavily textured album that aims for the stars.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's an album of textural terror, a musical abrasive applied to the slick multinational machinery, via hard beats and sonic density, angry politix and dance-floor decline.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Packed to the brim with all sorts of surprising twists and turns, Jean's Ecleftic plays like a cheeky earful of the multi-culti future of hip-hop.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's Like This finds Jones and her top-notch team of instrumentalists doing justice to the brilliant material she's selected, creating a musical wonderland where timeless songs meet spirited, lovely performances.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The album still bounces and skips via the ska signature with which No Doubt have marked the world, as in "Staring Problem" and "Home Now," but their forum is much bigger now, encompassing artful guitars, lurking bass and more interesting drum patterns.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Smith's latest CD, Gung Ho, is the most socially relevant album to come along in eons, pointing rock back towards its ambitious past when it once attempted to affect social change.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This extraordinarily gifted vocalist casts an unbreakable spell over each interpretation, turning it into something else entirely, and making one believe that it's impossible for the supposed original to be as significant.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    NYC Ghosts & Flowers yields no easy accessibility, as it becomes darker and more abstract by the minute.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The disc doesn't just contain one or two Top 40 hits, but rather a proliferation of truly excellent songs.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Summer's tunes have the sweetness and light of Burt Bacharach's finest.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Brown has mixed the best elements of '60s British flower power rock, a la the Moody Blues, with a new century's technology to create a potent, dream-inducing electronica brew.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The album is not without its flaws (some of the songs are less than memorable, and as always, the proceedings are dampened somewhat by Corgan's nasal drone of a voice), but it's a welcome return to form for one of music's original alt-rock heroes.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Fast, furious and full of wicked good fun...
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Make no mistake, the vibe here is strange and quirky -- the band's affinity for the naïve sometimes makes for an odd listening experience. But once you've settled into it, Peasant reveals itself to be a thing of beauty -- its nakedness comes to seem like the most natural thing in the world.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Although it is a more orchestrated affair than the stripped down sound this band is known for, The Night is as impressive as any of their previous efforts.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This is true hepcat music -- shaken rockabilly, stirred swing, chilled Big Band and it's finger-snappin' upbeat all the way through.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    His latest release pops to life with the Beatlesque piano beat of "Humble Bee" and maintains a buoyant atmosphere throughout.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The bottom-line is that while All is a good album, it isn't a great one.... All largely rides somewhere in the '80s, hitting a few heights (the ruminative "New York"), while occasionally missing the target altogether ("Peace on Earth").
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    It plays like an enjoyable variety show, since, as opposed to star turns, Willie's company puts in guest appearances, creating a strange mixture of not enough or a little too much (save for Willie's solo turns).
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Though Ecstasy is gruesome, fearsome and rife with realism much in the same way as his heart-stopping shocker, Berlin (1973), Reed has a compelling way with words, and a magic touch with psycho-delic guitar riffs that dare us to follow him down the back alleys to his darkest thoughts.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    OST
    The real genius of Almost Famous, however, is the inclusion of the exquisite and infuriatingly overlooked Led Zeppelin ode "That's the Way," as well as David Bowie's rare (but not impossible to acquire) live cover of Lou Reed's "I'm Waiting for the Man." And herein lies Crowe's smoking gun with which he shoots himself in the foot. If these songs are worth having (and they absolutely are) and are the best that Almost Famous has to offer (ditto), so too are the entire albums from whence they come, Led Zeppelin III and Santa Monica '72.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    On strictly musical terms, Bloodflowers is a disappointment. There is no daring journey to find that elusive new sound.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Alone With Everybody is a good album with great moments.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The translations that work best are the more modern pieces... The chief fault with Pieces is that, at times, it veers dangerously close to Muzak.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Though G.O.A.T.'s songs are all new, they do bear more than a whiff of the familiar, with the rapper looking back in time to invoke the tried-and-true formulas which have brought him chart-topping success throughout his storied career.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    At first, it may sound void of the instantly accessible pile of hits from Dookie and the handful more from Insomniac, but the album's social conscience and cunning lyrics make it a Warning to be heeded.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The group spiffs up their sound and takes it cruising in a modern direction -- proving that there's plenty of life left in them yet.... The caveat? In updating their grooves to sound like everybody else's, the band has succeeded in -- well, sounding like everybody else.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    There are songs on Mathers that are very, very good; as a result, when Eminem misses the mark, it feels incredibly frustrating, because you know what he's capable of.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Unfortunately seems to lack that goofiness that had previously made them one of rock-and-roll's coolest nerd bands.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Sometimes reminiscent of classic English prog-rockers the Moody Blues and the correlating Electric Light Orchestra (as in "Rescue" and "Girl Eyes"), Eve 6 mostly sounds like a safer version of their numeric brethren Third Eye Blind, Blink 182 and even matchbox twenty
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    With Road Rock weighing top-heavy with some of Crazy Horse's finest moments, Young's all-star friends just can't punch with that band's battle-proven viciousness. Not that Neil doesn't compensate -- as always, he's top-shelf, shredding his guitar with a torrent of electric snarl and broken string.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    "Learning How to Smile" has compelling subject matter in its reminiscence of love among the white trash ruins, but its climactic strings and cheery chords feel like a theme song to the latest WB teen-sex drama.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Kid's rapping is righteous, he's a fine vocalist, and like most musicians, his appalling persona contradicts his renown as a sweetheart of a guy. Nonetheless, as History repeats itself, his constant bragging only serves to undermine his credibility, and as a result, he becomes an idiotic parody of his own sick constructs.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Vapor Transmission, the follow-up to Orgy's 1998 debut, Candyass, is as sci-fi, inorganic and over-produced as the title implies. Sometimes the stainless steel robotics work, and sometimes they don't.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    If Binaural were Pearl Jam's first effort, it would receive little notice and get panned for its lack of focus and abundant musical mediocrity.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Being that the band's name is derivative, so are many of these Thirteen Tales they tell.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The band's edge has dulled considerably, in spite of guitarists Kyle Cook and Adam Gaynor's best efforts on "Angry" and "Mad Season," but for the most part they're heavily sedated throughout, as are bassist Brian Yale and drummer Paul Doucette, begging the question: Where's the band?
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Slim's Halfway only reaches heaven twice (Macy Gray's two star turns), and otherwise trolls, not in a gutter, but in what feels like interminable traffic. Most of Halfway's songs extend past the five minute mark, and like a movie that hasn't felt the firming up of a good editor's hands, they feel way too long. If guest vocalist Macy Gray hadn't shown up for Fatboy's party, Halfway might be the year's biggest letdown.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    At the Drive-In (from El Paso, Texas) picks up where Jane's Addiction leaves off, emitting that thin, distinctive Perry Farrell upper register vocal amid a post-punk apocalyptic guitar/bass/drums detonation. Good for the Addiction, not so good for the Drive-In.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    On his new album, You're the One, the singer's lyrics are masterful as ever, but their emotional punch is compromised considerably by syrupy melodies and uninspired production.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Sun's production is disappointingly safe, walking down a very predictable, somewhat dated road, instead of machete-chopping a path of its own.... [Its] most dazzling moments are its most straightforward -- the ones where Mullins strips away his affectations and flashes naked emotion.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Though the album finds Osborne a blues-belting, soul-sizzling, R&B vocalist... most of the songs just don't work in spite of the fact that all of Osborne's ducks (lyrics, music, arrangements and production) are lined up nicely.... Osborne's musical diversity and experimentation are brave actions in the face of the smothering homogeneity that continues to invade the art form, but even the most excellent elements will fall to certain ruination if miscombined.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Does the world really need another mediocre pop-rock album rife with trite lyrics, aimless melodies and bloated production?
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Black & Blue finds the Boys traveling all-too-familiar prefab-pop terrain (production-wise, it's the sonic twin of teen queen Britney's most recent effort), with overwhelmingly forgettable results.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Rule's sandblasted voice is as memorable as ever. But his unmistakable vocal presence is wasted on joints that fall way short of the impact made by his breakthrough hit ["Holla, Holla"].
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    While Two Against Nature certainly has its moments, it doesn't catch your ear with the crafty songsmith of Steely Dan past.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    They have a saying around recording studios: you can't polish a turd. Well, thanks to producer Terry Date, Starfish just might be one of the shiniest pieces of pooh in the world of waste.