Exclaim's Scores

  • Music
For 1,497 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 60% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 36% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 73
Highest review score: 100 Good Kid, M.A.A.D City
Lowest review score: 10 Excuse My French
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 9 out of 1497
1,497 music reviews
    • 99 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Smith's music resonates with the suffering and the dreams of a better life that embodied the decade of 1954 to 1964 that is the subject of this powerful compendium of compositions.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Though incomplete (those final Cale sessions are an important hole) presenting them as a whole paints a fuller picture of one of the most important bands of the rock era, and forces listeners to at least briefly reimagine one of their favourite records as a wholly different beast.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It is masterful, it is heartening and it represents today's best from an R&B/soul perspective.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With a more dynamic and drastically enhanced sound, this is how Dopesmoker was meant to be heard.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Though not as consistently aggressive as past efforts, the Chariot ride through other seemingly non-related genres (à la Between the Buried and Me) throughout One Wing, adding a bipolar insanity to the album.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    On their new full-length, much-anticipated Epitaph debut On The Impossible Past, they exceed expectations once again.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The result is a perfectly flowing album that is, at times, as calming as it is chaotic.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Their traditional characteristics and intellectual concepts, incorporated with new elements and ideas, make Apex Predator - Easy Meat another impressive addition to Napalm Death's spotless catalogue.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There certainly is a great deal more to Guthrie's immense body of work than what is represented on Woody At 100, but apart from some newly discovered recordings that completists will want, this is an ideal package for the uninitiated, and one to be treasured for years to come.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The band one-up Ex Lives in every regard.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    What it is, frankly speaking, is one of the brightest R&B-flavoured projects to touch the mainstream in a long time.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Instead of cowering, Behemoth have triumphantly returned with characteristic ugliness and chaos, though this is skillfully juxtaposed with a newfound delicacy.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A heavily introspective tour de force, Lamar has created a stubbornly parochial soundtrack to his life in Compton, CA.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While not nearly as exploratory of space as his stunning work with Supersilent and Christian Wallumrod, this release is near-perfect winter night listening.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    While the Go-Betweens may not be as well known to music fans as the Cure, R.E.M. or the Smiths, this lovingly curated box makes a convincing case that they are more than deserving of being on any list of the greatest rock bands of the 1980s or any other decade.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There's not enough space here to get into why Sleater-Kinney may be one of the most important bands of 2015, but one thing is clear: they've already delivered a serious contender for one of the year's best records.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's the driving, rock-based tracks like "Recoil" and "Just Dust" that give Life Somewhere Else its energy, as Kilbey matches Cain's chugging-but-ringing guitars with a lust-for-life delivery.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Although political in nature, the feel of the record is unabashedly joyful and if Jama ko doesn't form part of your summer listening, you are missing out on something very special.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Spaces is in turn haunting, energizing and overwhelmingly emotive, and a must-have for fans of the young German pianist, whether or not they've caught him live yet.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Clark has made the beautiful ugly, the ugly beautiful and the difference between them nearly indistinguishable. If that sounds pretty complex and incredible, you've got a pretty good idea what listening to St. Vincent is like.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Yet because the beats are so fierce and the flows so varied, there is no slogging through this 39-minute hurricane. It's been a minute, but RTJ have reminded us that, yes, rap music can be fun and opinionated simultaneously.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This reissue of the first two Bottle Rockets albums from '93 and '94 brings back with startling clarity how in tune Henneman was with the times, lyrically foreshadowing the decline of the middle class amid the rise of urban sprawl and taking well-aimed shots at unchecked racism and political correctness, all while leading his band like Warren Zevon fronting Crazy Horse.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Apple's most ingenious collection of songs to date.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Russian Circles' fifth studio album has a bolder, more polarizing sound than previous efforts.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Most vividly, Loud City Song evokes the easy, tingling drift of early Robert Wyatt.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's an impeccable compilation.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There are few out there above what he has achieved with Lonerism.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Compiled by Sofrito's Hugo Mendez, Haiti Direct is an amazing collection from Haiti's illustrious but sadly unsung musical history.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An effort that is even more emotionally ambitious an undertaking, and all the more wounding for its beauty.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Converge have managed to once again best their only competition: themselves.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This is a release worth snapping up on vinyl when it finally comes out.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's obvious for his fans he's making the music he's set out to create and when he's taken strategic measures to please the mainstream. But luckily for his avid listeners, K.R.I.T. almost entirely does the former here, upholding the funky, southern-psychedelic rap that his fans turn to him for.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Excitingly new yet classically evocative, You're Dead! is contemplative but never boring, an example of genre cross-pollination that transcends novelty and, occasionally, time and space as well.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Moritz Von Oswald Trio deliver their most impressive and spatially alluring album to date with Fetch.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is a gorgeous album.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Twenty-two years later, My Bloody Valentine is still the band everyone's talking about, and although it may not necessarily build on Loveless, there's no audible reason m b v shouldn't be spoken of in the same hushed, venerating tones.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Frustratingly, the record seems somewhat sleepily produced by her husband John Leventhal. One wishes for more flourish to distinguish these songs from one another.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Perfume Genius has begun to spread his wings, delivering a breakout release that relies on much more than his manic/mopey persona.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    This is an intense, unsettling work from the Canadian musician and if it doesn't quite reach the heights of Ravedeath, it's mostly down to Virgins lacking the fluid album arc of the former and not because the tracks are any less powerful.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Vulnicura is a well-crafted antithesis musically and thematically, resulting in the most compelling effort she has put forth in years.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is the album on which Daft Punk are truly and convincingly "human after all." And on this toweringly grand achievement, they've never sounded better.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    On Is Survived By, they've outdone themselves.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Innocence is Kinky is by turns surreal and hyper-real, a Lynch-ian underworld of avant-pop, alt-lit poetry and potent sexuality.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Despite a three-year hiatus, Claro Intelecto continues to generate quality, masterful releases.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This is the 11th album from the now 50-year-old, and may just be his best.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's a new band, a new sound, but the same old, marvellous songwriting. It's a killer combination.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    For both Bedhead fans and casual record collectors, Bedhead 1992-1998 is a fascinating (and comprehensive) look into one of indie rock's great forgotten acts.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With Bécs, Fennesz achieves the near-impossible, crafting a musical sequel that retains the energy, vision and flow of its predecessor.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Natalie Prass is a beautiful record that does best when it prods the sweet ache of failed romance.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Are We There cuts deep into the skin of its creator and finds Van Etten more exposed than ever.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    By toeing the party line--one that many critics and fans have completely rejected--Made in California paints a false picture of one of rock's most enduring and puzzling acts.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There is craftsmanship here, but its genius lies in letting the raw quality of his sound speak first rather than arranging it into something new.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Fay has lost none of his ability to capture the wonder of life in his words.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Kaleidoscope Dream is a statement that Miguel has arrived.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While her peers may be filling arenas with banjo anthems, Marling has long freed herself from that particular pigeonhole and presents another collection of songs that showcases her astounding talent.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Luxury Problems is a highly impressive full-length album of dark, atmospheric techno.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A record this sturdy in composition and delivery has the resilience to stand up to countless plays, and that timeless ache for a good, hard cry.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    It's a shame to find Grizzly Bear spinning their wheels.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    LP1
    LP1 is a fantastic debut from an artist who is quickly becoming the curator of her own mental museum.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Celeste put out a sludgy doom-inflected black metal record; this year, Indian turned the equation on its head and put out a blackened doom record, that's equally depraved, nihilistic, and crucial for any fan of truly heavy music.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    He's probably too modest to just come out and say that Present Tense is where beauty lies, but he should; this fourth Wild Beasts album is a stunner.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Hyperdub's decision to keep the material on Hyperdub 10.1 fresh and topical may take away from the commemorative feel of the comp, but the pure excitement the label's latest incites deserves nothing less than celebration.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's surprising, deeply moving and occasionally stunning.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    With simple rhyme schemes, by no means is Chance an incredible rapper, but he is true to his artistry, the person he's growing into and is becoming a force in the new age rap realm.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A touch of '80s-style production, including occasional saxophone-as-emotional-beat, at times threatens to nudge things into a satirical mash-up of Dire Straits/Bruce Hornsby hits, but they ride the right side of that precipice.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    However difficult the album may be, it's a rare pleasure to see artists who know how to make great pop songs eschewing expectations, growing beyond their previous oeuvre and audience to pursue a brave creative path into genuine 21st century music.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The production is on point and the rhyme patterns are above average, but there's a distinct lack of cohesion.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    This is a fine soundtrack to a road movie that's yet to be filmed.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With Reality Show, Sullivan delivers an R&B album that feels like how R&B used to sound circa late 90's/early 2000 while still coming off as forward-looking.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Between their unflagging energy and brilliant execution, Inter Arma have produced a stellar album that will remain memorable.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It isn't easy listening, akin to catching up with an over-sharing friend going through troubled times, but the stories are sad, funny and surprising, and the rewards are plentiful.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This three-disc set isn't just a nostalgia-inducing reminder of Killing Joke's tremendous evolution since 1979; it also showcases the striking consistencies in the band's sound and ethos.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Heart-rending, arterial and woundingly authentic, As The Stars is a hell of a record to drop on Valentine's day.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    De Vermis Mysteriis is a bloody, hard-fought triumph.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The album's weak spot is Darrow's voice, which, although pleasant, isn't as distinctive as those of his peers. Nonetheless, anyone interested in the L.A. country rock scene will find much to admire in Artist Proof, and an additional five previously unreleased demos are an added bonus.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Sensual, artful and accessible, it is easily one of the best pop albums of the year.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's a life we're lucky to see through this gorgeous album, however briefly.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If it can be said that Griffin has been toiling in the shadow of Emmylou Harris, then American Kid is the long-overdue moment that puts the full range of her talent on display.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A raucous centrepiece it is not. A soundtrack for a nightcap alone though? Absolutely.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The unlisted, sludge metal instrumental with crashing, crushing, demo-quality production only adds to the overall awesomeness and crazed attitude behind it all.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The rub is that Cult of Luna do the 13-minute-song thing so well on their sixth album (which is about four hours long) it's scary.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Skullsplitter is a triumph of post-modern songwriting, where decisions can be recast and repurposed to suit the needs of the present.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While Tomorrow's Harvest makes for a wonderful listen, and a perfect gateway album for new fans, it's not the revelation many devotees were hoping for.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    You Are Eternity is a remarkable accomplishment in sound design.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Fertile Crescent sees Homeboy Sandman adding another project to his growing library, and it's one worth repeated spins.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Baroque in complexity and dripping romantic drama, Altered State is a strong move in the right direction for TesseracT.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Beyoncé is better than good, slickly packaged, created with the best of intentions yet still comes off as a postmodern mash of hubris, sincerity and gloss. It will be a hit regardless.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The amount of technical and emotional ground that YOB are able to carry across these four tracks is phenomenal, and makes Clearing the Path to Ascend the album that marks the band's return to the height of their power.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Ocean Roar proves to be a cinematic experience that's good more often than not.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you like Soilwork, this is the album you've been waiting over a decade for.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    From powerful riffs to heartbreaking melodies, Down IV – Part II is yet another example of Down's flawless work.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A modest five-song EP, from its pared-down arrangements to its monochromatic album cover, Silent Hour/Golden Mile is a surprisingly cohesive release that begs for repeat spins.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Manically happy, infectiously danceable and too clever by half, if 1991 does one thing, it proves that Banks's breakout hit, "212," was no fluke.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    These songs feel ripped from sets you'll most likely never see, as the technical skill of Villalobos conspicuously reminds the listener of the less boring record it could have been.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    A little more variety certainly would flesh out the band's releases, but as it stands these 15 songs fit together nicely, giving the impression of one deliriously long writing session.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Monolithic, heavy, raw and aggressive, A World Lit Only by Fire is 100 percent Godflesh, shattering any doubts that the duo, led by mastermind Justin K. Broadrick, could maintain their classic sound.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It is minimalist yet lush, hopeful yet rooted in a stark and sometimes grim reality.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cancer For Cure is El-P's most accessible album yet, and with the right push it could be his breakthrough release.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The result is one of 2014's tightest releases.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Trouble Will Find Me burns slowly, but melds together more seamlessly with each listen.