PopMatters' Scores

  • TV
  • Music
For 7,632 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 67
Highest review score: 100 Doolittle 25
Lowest review score: 0 Travistan
Score distribution:
7,632 music reviews
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The songs are a dialogue of fuzz bass and searching guitar notes with the contours barely sketched in by the drums. Minimalism packs a mean punch; True Widow gets you in the gut.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Rips actually ends up adding to her reputation precisely because she performs like she’s got nothing left to prove or lose with it.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Granted, the Lips can still be innovative, but for perhaps the first time in their storied career, their creativity feels familiar and predictable.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    These cuts may be little more than glorified home recordings, but they are more than charming.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Ghosts of the Great Highway represents an expansive, continent-traversing narrative that evokes the literary style of John Steinbeck and the vivid imagery of everyday American life captured in the watercolors of Edward Hopper.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Without making any major alterations to their blueprint for music making, Super Furry Animals have nonetheless found a fresh and vibrant new corner of their odd little niche.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Imagin[e] the Beach Boys getting strung out in a field on cider midmorning in some alternative universe Texas, surrounded by retro-sounding DIY synths, a raggedy brass section, and a hippy cello player.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    From the Ages is not just the latest album from this long running band. It’s their best.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If you’re a lapsed Dickhead, Sweet Warrior would make for a great reintroduction to Richard Thompson. Likewise, should you require only one RT album per decade, this disc may well stand as his best of the 2000s.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    There are, however, occasional stumbles that suggest that some lessons cannot be learned quickly, and that melody is an essential component of their sound that needs more attention. For now, though, this is much better.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    By tweaking the sound of his previous record, adding wisely chosen collaborators, and not trying to totally revolutionize what was already working quite well, Snaith has created one of the most enjoyable, crowd pleasing records of the year.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Set against a rich, ethereal backdrop, it’s a mature, moody debut, the type that makes one hope Stith will choose to linger on the music scene for some time to come.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Brilliant, shimmering and wonderfully composed, Winter Hymn Country Hymn Secret Hymn is one of the best albums of year, and the best album GY!BE have never released.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    When Yoko isn't channeling Wilco, it calls to mind another giant on the American indie rock scene: Spoon.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There’s several superlatives that could embellish Get Off on the Pain: contender for year’s end best of list, insightful and rare look into a singer’s psyche, a collection of top-grade Country music or soulful purging. All of them apply, and then some.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The Shepherd’s Dog is the most successful merger yet of Beam’s meticulously constructed songs with adventurous arrangements that move further and enthusiastically away from the band’s pious beginnings.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    More than a patchy but occasionally brilliant album, Multiply is the whisper that the greatest soul music, rather than being trapped in our memories of times gone by, may yet play free in days to come.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Electric finds a reenergised Pet Shop Boys’ still masterful in the dark art of crafting ‘smart-bomb’ dancefloor bangers.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Aurora does not disappoint; it continues Ben Frost’s resume as one of the most fascinating experimental musicians in the world.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    For those who have been gripped or at least mildly interested by the band’s progression over its first two LPs will find Modern Vampires of the City to be an expansive, illustrious work that--while clearly a 21st century recording--is a reminder of the gift musicians have to leave the door in one decade and come back in another.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    While all of this is promising, and illustrates that Clap Your Hands Say Yeah likely has a very bright career ahead of them, they're only just getting started.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress is, without a doubt, and seemingly with all intention, their most immediate record to date.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    We Love Life is an album that trades the group's tongue-in-cheek gimmicks and satirical savvy for a mode of pensive moderation and subtle telling.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Throughout Send, Wire strike the right compromise, pushing their songs to brink of chaos without ever allowing them to disintegrate.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While the first album broods, the 11 songs on this disc are mostly smooth and flowing.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The brilliance of El Camino lies in the fact that it is still perfectly modern, a step in the direction of legitimizing the use of vocal effects, multi-tracking and ultimately catchy choruses.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The first five cuts on Beauty & Crime are absolutely gorgeous--near and sheer perfection.... The remaining songs, while enjoyable and meeting Ms. Vega’s usually high lyrical standards, don’t gel quite as smoothly.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Obviously, though, the greatness of this record goes beyond its transitions and production “tricks.” Aside from the aforementioned standout “Xcalibur”, Ethiopium is brimming with repeat-worthy cuts.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There is no such thing as a bad moment on Dream River. That being said, I wish that he chose to use a different percussion instrument than bringing back the claves for back-to-back “Summer Painter” and “Seagull”, neither of which use the instrument as well as “The Sing” did.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This reinterpretation is as fresh and breathtaking as the group’s past work. Indeed, it may be the most wonderful thing since its debut. Maybe better.