CMJ's Scores

  • Music
For 728 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 67% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 27% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 74
Highest review score: 90 M B V
Lowest review score: 30 IV Play
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 1 out of 728
728 music reviews
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sadly, Dan Bejar tuned down the distinctive cross-hatch in his vocals that has made skin crawl with delight, but, as has remained unchanged for over a decade, his continental blues are heard in his quick-witted lyrics; the lovely laments of Kaputt are full of tongue-in-cheek nuances.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Rossen's sprawling pop coupled with his subtly personal lyrics gives the album a bittersweet flavor that makes for some very impressive moments.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While Light Up Gold's re-release is quite literally nothing new, it's sure to garner a rash of deserved credit this time around, opening Parquet Courts to a wider audience that can further foster the appreciation of this excellent album.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Despite the brainy, composer-like attention to detail and El-P's complicated lyrics, this is still music imbued with a bracing sense of physicality. It's great stomping music.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With Sister Faith, their fourth album in nine years, Coliseum offers up its most palatable set of tunes yet, a continuation of the dirty-pop paradigms set in place by 2010’s House With A Curse, and the Parasites EP released the following year.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    On a superficial level, Trouble Will Find Me, the National’s latest full-length LP, probably won’t convert any listeners who’ve written off the band’s music as boring.... Of course, the power’s in the poetics, and Berninger concocts some truly heart-wrenching images this time around.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A listless cloud of heartbreak penetrates every crack and many moments teeter on the maudlin, but The Worse Things Get has fight, too.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Vampires Of The Modern City stands to become the group’s Paul’s Boutique, raising the bar from being a fun but safe band to breaking ground ahead of their peers.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Wondervisions, its lyric-less debut full length, does not fall short on its abilities to stir emotion.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    They expand upon the thrills of the last record with acerbic aplomb, catching us unaware with hooks and then relentlessly, lovingly, plugging away at the daily, death-y grind.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Carrion Crawler/The Dream could very well be born from a desire to please crowds as easily as it could be Dwyer wanting to craft jams as musical meditation.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    [Slaughterhouse is] a master's thesis of reverb, crafted by an electric orator who, more and more, finds the pithiest ways to worship the guitar as instrument, drug and weapon.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The most resonant part of Doi Todd's music is the quiet darkness that she twists into an undercurrent of tenderness. Cosmic Ocean Ship is more openly joyous than other songs on previous albums, like 2008's Gea, and perhaps not as "mysterious" or grabbing.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Harmonicraft isn't just the best Torche release: It's a contender for one of the best loud rock releases of the year.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Mohawke and Lunice prove that you can strike a perfect balance between experimentation and restraint.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    July’s strongest points come when Nadler has the most room to stretch her vocal muscles.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With The Odds, the Evens have perfected the model of what we may consider post-post-punk: simple messages, tight instrumentation-this is grown-up grunge.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    It's just a little too long and continuous to listen to in one setting.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Old
    At 19 tracks, Old can get a little taxing, as if Brown, in an effort to be expansive, just decided to be everything all at once.... But you’ll forget about that once you realize that Handstand‘s beat is a dizzying tornado of synth and buzz that’s unlike anything you’ve heard before.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    I Hate Music isn’t a missive on being an aging rocker as much as it’s reflective of the wisdom and maturity garnered as a touring band in what is too often--and outright mistakenly*--only considered the realm of the young and starry-eyed. Only Superchunk does it with the same unstoppably jaunty bounce and screaming guitars that defined (No Pocky For Kitty) and redefined (Majesty Shredding) their still palpable sound and made them leaders in their genre
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Although there aren't any obvious standout hits here, that's not what FlyLo intended to create. Instead, Until The Quiet Comes blends together into a lush electronic soundscape you can daydream to.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The music is unlike anything Cloud Nothings has done before, and that's a good thing.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    On Skying, the group has definitely matured, jettisoning much of the divisiveness that marked its brash origins, but it feels like some of the edginess that first made the Horrors notable might've been discarded with it.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    In all, this is a muscular yet not flashy outing from Gang Gang Dance, and its smooth confidence is a welcome respite from its self-indulgent neighbors.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Cave's noisy, dentist-drill guitar work is still prominently featured, but occasionally it takes on pedal-warped psychedelic tones as the songs stretch out beyond the band's typical garage-rock template.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Some might listen to Fear Fun and hear a man feeling sorry for himself, but with melodies so sweet and sentiments so comically self-loathing, this album won't suffocate you with sadness.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    At certain points in Nikki Nack, like the track Manchild, her quirkiness feels out of reach, but it always comes back down again to teach you a little something about life, love and letting creativity shine through.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Though the pure, dripping niceness of the album can start to feel dusty after a while, the constant effect of washing prevents that.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Black Up is a wild ride, but Butler's songwriting is not haphazard. To be sure, his laid-black flow channels a vibe similar to the who-cares attitude of those on the opposite side of the left-field hip-hop divide, but don't let that fool you; his music is weird, but it's also deliberate.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Through it all, the energy and attitude is unchanged. And although the band’s themes seem even more specifically focused, this album is really for anyone who’s ever felt held back.