Paste Magazine's Scores

  • Music
For 2,206 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 32% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 73
Highest review score: 100 London Calling [25th Anniversary Legacy Edition]
Lowest review score: 10 Songs From Black Mountain
Score distribution:
2,206 music reviews
    • 82 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    The results of these experiments can be on the nose, like doing a gender switch on Brazilian extreme metal act Sarcofago.... Others take a little bit of unpacking.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The album will satisfy those wondering whether the band can achieve the nosebleed heights of its formidable back catalog, and it’s once again evident that Ashcroft needs guitarist Nick McCabe, bassist Simon Jones and drummer Peter Salisbury to keep his shamanistic flights of fancy tethered to earth.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Soft Airplane is a little scary (and dark and dank), yet filled with untold creative surprises and delights.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Tell Tale Signs subtly makes a good argument that Dylan’s later work is richer than expected.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Emanuel Lundgren has a rare knack for catchy melodies and bouncy rhythms that grab the ear, and also for arrangements that enlarge these simple elements into the enveloping emotional weather accompanying these tug-of-wars between adolescence and adulthood, escapism and reality.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The Crying Light, reaches out from the band’s investment in gender issues to grapple with nature of a different sort: the earth, familial relationships and a life-force passed on. The scope of the record spans generations, but retains a sense of communion with its listener.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    This album isn't merely a single peak, but a whole mountain range.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Reminiscing on lost love and lust, Mould impresses with his songwriting skills.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    With a little luck, this collection of mostly obscure covers could, on a smaller scale, do for Dando what the Rick Rubin-helmed American Recordings did for Johnny Cash.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The foursome weave a dizzying web of traditions into their own rough-hewn sound, dragging vestiges of alt-rock, punk and blues through the mud to achieve an album rife with brash dissonance.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Working out of his home studio, Sweet--joined by drummer Ric Menck and multi-instrumentalist Greg Leisz--nails every sonic nuance, buried under cumulous clouds of glorious boy/girl harmonies.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The songs Jarosz wrote herself more pull their own weight. The eleven originals bubble with questions, toe-tapping impatience and a dreamy yearning, and they're strung through with twinge of poignancy that's completely refreshing.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It's a wonderfully weird parade of sonic delights: an arresting consummation of the Lips' two-and-a-half decade career.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    For those who self-identify as Tom Waits Fans, Glitter and Doom Live succeeds on pretty much every level.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    On Tiger there's more than a whiff of tequila in the air-yellowy-green shots knocked back fast followed by hazy mornings filled with nagging regrets. This could perhaps be considered "folk" in some generous sense of the word, but let's not be afraid to call it what it really is: unbridled, unselfconscious, swirling, head-pounding pop.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It's this combination of lo-fi sounds and lyrical complexity that makes Cape Dory a great debut record.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    With alt-country lyrics that are more Tom Waits than Guy Clark, Hayes Carll continues to impress, giving us more to think about than just honky tonks and heartaches.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It turns out the two are even better in cahoots than they are solo, each buttressing the other with her own set of complementary idiosyncrasies.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It's Kafka meets Mahler at the hipster club, and it's easily one of the musical highlights of the year.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The Hunter, their finest album yet, is proof enough.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Nothing's Gonna Change... is ultimately the kind of album you can curl up into, let the warm tones surround you and rest easy.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Nootropics, the latest record from Baltimore quintet Lower Dens, connects layered loops and trippy chants with catchy rock 'n' roll arrangements, delivering a pure punch of sonic bliss.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Even putting aside his berserk, imagination-defying technical skill--he stays deep enough in the pocket to get lost there--there's not a wasted breath on R.A.P. Music.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Given Ben Keith's death last year, it's the perfect merge: Young's rough-hewn organics and the raucous Crazy Horse.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    By opening up, by giving a glimpse into the heart behind those heart-stopping melodies, Newman's written his best songs in nearly a decade.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The more charming pockets found within The Narcissist II's peculiar symmetry are worth waiting for, so long as you're willing to suspend your disbelief long enough to ingest the entire record. Otherwise, you might be missing the point.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    He’s just a great singer, backed by great players he puts to good use on a set of sticky, deceptively inventive songs
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Dormarion should leave returning fans satisfied and new listeners hooked as Lerner continues to refine his skills and churn out strong albums.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    A deeply internalized album, it’s The National at their Nationalest. It is, as well, a collection of songs about songs: clever but not meta, and thankfully never cute or self-impressed.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Danger Mouse’s fingerprints are all over all of these songs, and it’s easy to see parallels with some of his other projects, but in many ways Evil Friends is the most quintessentially Portugal. The Man album the band has released. It’s also undoubtedly their best.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Old
    He has wound up producing an album that transcends much of the typical hype bullshit and seems destined to stand as a unifying record, leaving no one asking for Danny Brown’s resume when he receives his share of the spotlight, making his sense of humor an ingredient rather than the whole meal.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Devine blends folk, punk, rock and pop sounds into songs with intricate guitar parts reminiscent of Elliott Smith and flowing melodies that can’t help but stay in your head.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Get There, is a thoughtful, interesting record (about what it means to be thoughtful and interesting).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    These pseudo-mashups expand Elverum’s vision to a Cinerama-like depth of field with the picture beautifully warping around the edges. Whatever Elverum’s true intentions with this release, it certainly has a welcome place in his vast and varied discography.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Vile’s insight is the relaxed current on which It’s A Big World floats, an unexpected testament to one of the year’s best albums, and a compelling work of its own.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    As powerful a witness for the region--Memphis, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas--as it is a lovely quilt of musicality, braiding blues, folk, Appalachia, rock and old-timey country, this is balm for lost souls, alienated creatures seeking their core truths and intellectuals who love the cool mist of vespers in the hearts of people they may never encounter.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Crain has invited the listener to eavesdrop on her internal and often contradictory dialogues. That she’s able to do so without shame is one of Kid Face’s crowning achievements and more evidence of Crain’s brilliant, though still-developing talents.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It’s a quietly sublime work from a group of musicians who have always insisted--via their straight-up goofy music videos, Budweiser references and substitute teacher-like appearances--they’re just average suburbanites.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    From a purely sonic standpoint, these new versions are impossible to disregard.... The bonus material on Led Zeppelin II and III is more revelatory, showcasing the band’s creative process through assorted alternate takes and rough mixes.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    This was, at least until two days ago, the most ambitious and powerful underground hip-hop album to be released this year. But leave it to Death Grips to drop a surprise record on us and steal the spotlight from their fellow Californians. We’ll have to wait before we find out which one stands the test of time, but for the moment, advantage: Clipping.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Eschewing Smithsonian properness, Remedy channels youth in all its freewheeling glory.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Yes, Braid is still a guitar-forward post-punk powerhouse, and No Coast is a great addition to its catalog, even possibly containing some of the best material the band has ever written.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Her voice instantly captivates, radiating both power and sophistication on 11 tracks that vary wildly in tone.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    There is most certainly a parallel universe in which Emilana Torrini is the Next Big Thing.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Amid its admirably complex compositional compressions, Skeletal Lamping feels like a triple-LP sprawler, despite clocking in at less than an hour. For those who have the patience to hang with Barnes and his freak-outs, it could be a masterpiece.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Rarely does a track on this set demand skipping, and even the scant missteps are worth at least a few listens--like any great band, the JAMC lived and learned.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    If she has more misanthropic stuff like this up her A Camp sleeve? Hey-forget the Cardigans, and bring it on.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The album’s meditations on what follows the mortal coil are as sweeping as the gulf between its genres, but both are handled with rewardingly nuanced subtlety.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    'It Ain't Gonna Save Me'--inarguably one of the best tracks to date from the Memphis punk rocker born Jay Lindsey--seethes melodic vitriol with its breathless guitars and lyrics about shitting clouds. It's the high point of Watch Me Fall, but the rest of the record hardly slouches.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The album drags at points; with 22 tracks and a 70-minute runtime, some of this material would have been better off on a mixtape. But that’s a minor flaw in an otherwise superbly-executed gangster epic.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    This whole album is good, just know that up front.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    On their second LP, the youngsters don't disappoint.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The album is both affirmative and entertaining, addressing themes of political upheaval, reconciliation and the ignorance that so often comes with privilege.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    It's too early to start drafting up those Best of 2011 lists, but City of Refuge deserves to be shortlisted as one of the stronger folk albums in recent memory.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    It's the lyrics that make Smart Flesh truly shine.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Rather than hone the traditional Appalachian discipline, the sensualist singer explores the possibilities of acoustic/roots music--conjuring songscapes, erotic tableau and enough tension to hold listeners transfixed throughout Follow Me Down.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The cadences, demeanors and vocal tones certainly add an interesting wrinkle to Eno's dynamic, but a few exceptions aside, I'm generally too enraptured in his rich compositions to decipher the staggered wordplay.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    While it's not perfect, CoCo Beware is a strong, cohesive opening statement from a group of talented musicians that only gets better with repeated listens.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Provincial is fully formed-far closer to a Weakerthans album--and with some different collaborators to add some new textures, especially chamber arrangements.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Of these three reissues [Cotton-Eyed Joe, Green Rocky Road, and 1966], 1966 is arguably the best, by virtue of the setting itself.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Each track seamlessly flows into the next, making the album kind of just one long song about transitive early age....It's beautiful.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The results, especially when they give equal time to his natural charm and knob-twiddler Bobby Harlow's clearly natural talent ("Keep On Movin'"), are nothing short of spectacular.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The compassionate understanding of human nature, is the guiding ethos behind Channel Orange, a very beautiful album about not-so-beautiful people.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    This record isn't simply a record, it's an emotional, intricate experience that keeps on after the instrumental break.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Re-sculpting many of her best loved songs, the complexity of her musicality emerges from the intensity of the originals-as dynamics are truly sculpted and the songs take on new and often more ominous colors.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Throughout Anxiety, tracks fail to resolve--“Counting,” “Promises,” “Gonna Die”--and initially I thought it was a songwriting flaw, coming on so fantastically strong there was nowhere left to go. But .... On multiple listens none of this plays accidental--songs run aground as a means of setting the next episode in motion.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Privilege (Abridged) takes on immediately recognizable appearances, but Pennington doesn’t just walk through each number; he partners with them, parading the words and music in and out of dynamic perspective.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Cruise Your Illusion is a record that will likely be spinning on turntables well into the future.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Modern Vampires is Rostam Batmanglij’s album. Like a character actor stealing the movie from the lead, he pretty much owns these songs, filling them with eccentric flourishes of sound that are both jarring and perfect.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    In the end, Ultraviolet may not be the best metal album of 2013, but it’s definitely the 2013 metal album you’d most be a fool to ignore.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The result is the purest late-night album that Camera Obscura has recorded yet.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The duo impressively join a raft of other legacy artists (David Bowie, Black Sabbath) in proving that getting older doesn’t mean you have to lose your passion for creativity or, in the case of Electric, your libido.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    That this collaboration would end up working so well should really be of little surprise to longtime fans of Costello. His ‘70s and ’80s work often bore the influence of the same R&B, soul and funk records that the Roots clearly adore.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Creative movements make Bitter Rivals an exciting and powerful record, because it reminds the listener that sometimes it’s okay to follow an idea into unexpected territory and shake things up.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    If this is a new avenue of self-loathing for Kasher, it’s a welcome change of form from the perhaps more angular output of his screaming past. His gifts for wrangling emotive detours from unlikely sonic realms is his best talent, but he couldn’t do that without his crafty capacity for language, too. Stripped of the angry adornments of his yesteryears, we now may take him at his word.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Don’t Tell The Driver spends the whole of its hour-long running time in what feels like a slow melt, with melodies sliding down its surface alluringly.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    bEEdEEgEE makes it apparent that Brian Degraw has a future with or without Gang Gang Dance, as this solo album can rival any of his previously released heights.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Although cobbled from six different shows, Live at the Cellar Door sounds like a cohesive entity. The recordings have been remastered with such love; each string on Young’s acoustic rings with clarity and weight, and each crack in his voice stings with resonance. And yet, a distant haze pervades the record that could convince listeners that this is an actual bootleg on wax.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    It’s a document that is crucial to anyone working to understand the evolution of the UK music scene and a welcome addition to the library of any discerning pop fan.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Teeth Dreams is the first time since Boys & Girls in America that The Hold Steady toes that perfect line between adolescent, backseat make-out sessions and stoned, intellectual discourse on the human condition.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    The disjointed nature of Under Color’s thrust somehow catapults its enjoyability.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 87 Critic Score
    Watson and Taylor still communicate better than most bands or friends could hope to achieve. But they’ve finally let the listener into Slow Club’s emotional core, making the kind of songs that aren’t just meant to score feelings, but actually make the listener feel.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Oxford Collapse is uncommonly muscular for this type of band, rather like Les Savy Fav by way of R.E.M., and they’re most engaging when flexing this muscle
    • 78 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Death Magnetic is more than a paean to all things thrash--it’s the revivification of ambition dormant for nearly two decades.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Staunch admirers of the traditional Pretenders sound might not like this record, but I say, “Yee-haw!”
    • 74 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    When taken alongside recent successes like Chaos and Creation and his stunning orchestral piece Ece Cor Meum, Electric Arguments hints that a late period renaissance could be underway.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    The lion's share of Incredibad is without a doubt one of the funniest albums, music or otherwise, in years.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    The basic ingredients here--a sexy, intelligent singer and songwriter, a guy who wants to be a guitar god and a drummer who socks the hell out of his kit--come fairly close to defining my notion of perfect music. Together they make a triple-layer torch-song/New Wave/power-pop confection.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    In short, arguably for the first time, Oberst gives us an album rife with liveliness--and it sounds like he had a damn good time making it.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    That sense of musical evolution makes Around the Well a particularly compelling listening, and Beam’s sensitive readings of songs by Stereolab, the Flaming Lips, the Postal Service, and New Order show how sturdy his sound can be, as he translates them to quieter settings without losing their heraldic sentiments.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    The restless vibe to this ramshackle collection suggests Rawlings’ greatest trait is his wanderlust. It’s allowed him to work closely with a range of different artists in the past, and it makes A Friend of a Friend a spirited affair.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Know Better Learn Faster mostly sounds like a young artist coming into her own--in music and life and love.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Jones and the Dap-Kings make the kind of music that moves them, and their feverish passion is contagious.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    All of Houck's southern eccentricities remain gloriously intact, from his eloquently hangdog vocals to his minimalist songwriting on "Hej, Me I'm Light."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Ghosts skirts its predecessor's instrumental self-indulgence, allowing its tracks to swim in grandeur--but not drown.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    It's no mean feat for him to drop a solo album that's both a trove of pop jams and a profound piece of artistic experimentation, and he's done just that--a remarkable achievement by any measurement.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Only Bejar knows the logic behind his musical metamorphoses, but that doesn't mean we can't enjoy an album as smart and as beguiling as Kaputt.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Blood Pressures mixes heavy, gainy hard-rocking guitars with a whole lot of making love to the mic.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 86 Critic Score
    Déjà vu, ambition, whatever be damned. No help may be coming, but they don't need it in the first place.