Spin's Scores

  • Music
For 3,348 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 47% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 69
Highest review score: 100 The Pretty Toney Album
Lowest review score: 0 Noah's Ark
Score distribution:
3,348 music reviews
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Pig Lib is both the loopiest music Malkmus has ever made and the most direct. [Apr 2003, p.104]
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    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This record recasts her unnerving spell--brooding country-pop riffs that conceal devastating lyrics. [May 2003, p.116]
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    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Heartfelt guitar rock capable of punching you in the gut and patting you on the back. [Aug 2003, p.114]
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    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is not garage rock; this is art rock. And that's a compliment. [May 2003, p.107]
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    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The lyrics explore suburban everyguyism, but the choruses explode like fireworks over a church picnic. [Jul 2003, p.109]
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    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is a record that creates tension from the cryptic and release from the inexplicable. [Jul 2003, p.105]
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    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A warm and deeply engaging snapshot of fractured relationships and existential dread. [Aug 2003, p.116]
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    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    They channel experimental noise, acid-drenched riffs, and live-show spontaneity into a record of brilliantly crafted nuggets of lysergic rock that is easily their most consistent effort to date.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Is it essential? Absolutely. With only a guitar or piano, and a voice that is developing into one of the most expressive in rock, Marshall crafts deeply textured explorations of heartache, terror, longing, dismay, and emotions I'm pretty sure I've not found yet.... Rock will see few finer releases this year.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Simultaneously joyous and joyless, all downloaded beats, downhearted lyrics and down-the-hatch daring. [Aug 2003, p.113]
    • Spin
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    He cross-fades scratch solos and oddball sound bites like he's trying to win a DJ battle and top the Down Beat poll at the same time. [Jan 2004, p.100]
    • Spin
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A bruisingly great collection of demented 1988-style boom-bap. [May 2004, p.107]
    • Spin
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    While Essence was lyrically spare, World marks Williams' return to the painful sensuality of the specific. [May 2003, p.109]
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    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Mix[es] xylophones, spaghetti-Western trumpets, and quirky trick guitars to sweeping effect. [Jun 2003, p.109]
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    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Even more dense and brutal than Burma's early records. [Jun 2004, p.103]
    • Spin
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The Von Bondies' calling card is the urgency of [Jason] Stollsteimer's voice as it sands down the shop-worn chord progressions. [Mar 2004, p.92]
    • Spin
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    While the novelty factor alone makes it worth the download time, it works as a cohesive album long after the initial shock wears off. [Apr 2004, p.91]
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    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It feels more like a band playingto a multitude of strengths than the formal wrestling of Kid A. [Jul 2003, p.103]
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    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A raging, ragged Behind The Music--15 coal-black odes to the casualties that art leaves behind and that life can't avoid. [Aug 2003, p.111]
    • Spin
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Beam has given us his second straight masterwork: self-assured, spellbinding, and richly, refreshingly adult. [Apr 2004, p.89]
    • Spin
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The album shuffles and grooves like Fela Kuti sloshed on gin and tonics. [June 2003, p.100]
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    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The toughest record ever made by a former mainstream country artist.... If all the songs don't rival her finest work, the arrangements pull them up. [May 2004, p.105]
    • Spin
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Instead of the pleasing pop potpourri of their last album... the 13 songs on And Then Nothing . . . flow together subtly, all texture, mood and shade.... Yo La Tengo's tenth collection of warm, tiny songs is by far the finest in their careers...
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Half expansive, burnished radio-rock, half swampy Delta hoodoo-hollerin' that reeks of Brock's Southern sojourn. [May 2004, p.103]
    • Spin
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    This is music to play in dark, velvety, womblike bars; this is music to play while buying cigarettes; this is music for well-dressed poor people. [May 2003, p.109]
    • Spin
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Mostly great. [Jan 2005, p.96]
    • Spin
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Will likely be the best political album this year. [Mar 2005, p.88]
    • Spin
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    There is no more transportive band working in music. [Oct 2005, p.140]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Not since Grateful Dead's Europe '72 has there been a live double album in which intimacy and expansiveness, guitar mess and piano reflection commingle this sweetly. [Dec 2005, p.107]
    • Spin
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    After only a few spins, The Greatest sounds like another [masterpiece]. [Feb 2006, p.84]
    • Spin
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Unlike many rockers who cherish childlike ideals only to fall prey to amateurism or whimsy, Ze is aware that kids are both complex in their inventions and earnest in their intentions. [May 2006, p.93]
    • Spin
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Pink showcases every sound Boris can make.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Barring "Blade Runner," the best pop art by a former adman. [June 2008, p.119]
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    "Sister Ray" comes across like a medley has so many shifts in speed, volume, and energy that it seems more like a medley than a concentrated take on the White Light/White Heat epic. It's the brightest gem among many in the collection, which consolidates all of the group's many faces into one cohesive opus.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The rare hip-hop debut that does justice to its buzz. [Apr 2003, p.104]
    • Spin
    • 89 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    They do it better [than the Postal Service]--catchier songs, chillier production and more sophisticated beats. [Nov 2004, p.118]
    • Spin
    • 89 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Rounds is a more varied trip, with a darker vibe suggesting the influence of Hebden's labelmate Dan Snaith of Manitoba. [Aug 2003, p.118]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Savage punk rock that shifts and shakes like the bleachers during a homecoming orgy. [Jan 2005, p.98]
    • Spin
    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    For the juke-joint blues of “Jimmy Mathis” and the breezy mountain song “Comin Round,” he takes old-school-as-the-hills song forms and gussies them up for the club.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A richly rewarding passage through the last five decades of American music history. [Aug 2005, p.99]
    • Spin
    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Bright Yellow is the soundtrack for a small town, like New york, where everybody knows too much about everybody else. [May 2003, p.112]
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    • 73 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    They clearly prize improvisation and spontaneity; the songs always sound like they were written this morning, refined over lunch, and recorded in time for happy hour. [Jan 2004, p.103]
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    • 86 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The best record they've made. [Apr 2003, p.107]
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    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Playfully sleazy, creatively reckless, and ridiculously, abstrusely, hyper-generously funky. [Jan 2004, p.95]
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    • 83 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    This time, the band lug the still-smoking amps from their lightning-strike live show into the studio and let the noise chase the midnite vultures away.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A perfect album, except perfect is the wrong word for a band so dedicated to kitchen-sink oddness. [Mar 2004, p.96]
    • Spin
    • 86 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    It's not gallows humor, just the most natural thing in the world. [Oct 2003, p.113]
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    • 81 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The Jane's Addiction album Jane's Addiction should have made last year. [Jun 2004, p.108]
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    • 74 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Sound wimpy? Well, if you could write a song half as good as "Close The Door," we guarantee that your girlfriend would like you twice as much. [Sep 2003, p.115]
    • Spin
    • 68 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Amazing Grace is at peak moments an amazingly graceful representation of MC5/Stooges skid marks on a psychedelic superhighway. [Oct 2003, p.112]
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    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A Kleenex-grabbing, chain-smoking, staring-out-the-window, in-bed-for-days breakup record. [Jun 2004, p.106]
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    • 84 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Finds these thoughtful Brits exploring even more emotional territory. [Mar 2004, p.96]
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    • 76 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    He's one of the four or five best MCs breathing. [Aug 2004, p.103]
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    • 71 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A dark, emotionally intense record, best experienced on headphones. [Jan 2004, p.97]
    • Spin
    • 70 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Good records from the Descendents and Bad Religion in one year? Joe Strummer's ghost must be keeping close watch. [Jul 2004, p.110]
    • Spin
    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Lets you better appreciate his knack for weaving glorious pop songs out of change-ups and mixed signals. [Jul 2004, p.109]
    • Spin
    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Room's similarity to its predecessor ultimately bespeaks a purity of vision, not a dearth of new ideas. [Dec 2003, p.121]
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    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    They sound like they're too busy tearing their limbs off and hitting one another over the head with them to think about what the songs actually mean. [Apr 2003, p.102]
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    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    An atavistic orgy of recycled riffs and lifelong obsessions. [Sep 2004, p.120]
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    • 59 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A jaw-dropping act of artistic will and a fiery, proper follow-up to 1994's Live Through This. [Mar 2004, p.89]
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    • 70 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A fresh, literate blast of nuanced screamers and mid-tempo heart purging. [Aug 2003, p.119]
    • Spin
    • 70 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Like running full-tilt through a fun house with smoke machines, tinsel-covered ceilings and a super-size disco ball. [Aug 2004, p.108]
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    • 87 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    At its core, Showtime is a classic sophomore album in the hip-hop sense: puffy with bluster, brimming with indignation. [Nov 2004, p.107]
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    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A dark, tense record, but one still crackling with life. [Sep 2004, p.114]
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    • 78 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Totally grimy. [Nov 2004, p.118]
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    • 65 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    This is the album Metallica lifers have been waiting for: an inspired return to the complex savagery of old. [Jul 2003, p.109]
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    • 92 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The flow is straight-up alien: chilled-out and frantic at the same time, slightly breathless. [Feb 2004, p.95]
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    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Their best by a mile. [Jun 2003, p.100]
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    • 87 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Like Elliott Smith after ten years of Sunday school. [May 2004, p.108]
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    • 74 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    His characters feel like individuals, not archetypes. [Sep 2004, p.114]
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    • 71 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Daniel's bump-and-grind synth lines are all campy humor. [Mar 2005, p.92]
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    • 88 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Smith's intentions cry out from the album's every discordant corner--he clearly wanted to test himself, to unhinge parts of his sound. [Nov 2004, p.105]
    • Spin
    • 87 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Both sucks the air out of Dixie legend and revives it. [Sep 2004, p.122]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    [Death Cab] have never made the truly great album that their best songs promised. Until now. [Nov 2003, p.112]
    • Spin
    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Antics is so much more fun than Turn On The Bright Lights. [Oct 2004, p.107]
    • Spin
    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    There isn't a tune on No Cities Left, the Dears' gorgeous second album, that's not pitched at a minor state of emergency. [Jan 2005, p.99]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    An often-great set of songs about loneliness. [Feb 2005, p.85]
    • Spin
    • 73 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    She's become masterful at painting in the blues and grays of everyday emotion. [Feb 2005, p.92]
    • Spin
    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Years of gradually opening up their minimalism have imbued Low with the wisdom to make every new layer count. [Feb 2005, p.91]
    • Spin
    • 79 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The Young-ian guitar stutter remains intact. [Mar 2005, p.92]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Welcome to the Dirty North, y'all. [Feb 2005, p.88]
    • Spin
    • 68 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Stuff this simple can turn into art that's fantastic or a fantastic disaster. Coachwhips walk the line masterfully. [Feb 2005, p.91]
    • Spin
    • 88 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Scarily intimate and irresistibly beautiful. [Mar 2005, p.92]
    • Spin
    • 82 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    His loosest, most inspired set yet. [Mar 2005, p.86]
    • Spin
    • 75 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Frances explores an explosive groove Comatorium only implied. [Mar 2005, p.83]
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    • 81 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Delicate Casio-toned anthems. [Mar 2005, p.91]
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    • 76 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    They're better at evoking turbulence than talking about it--efforts to cop '80s-pop vocals are overshadowed by the cascade and rumble of the instrumental long-players. [Apr 2005, p.102]
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    • 81 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The live guitars and drums--and vocals more emo than robo--give off an irresistible warmth. [Aug 2004, p.108]
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    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    What it sounds like to be sucked into doomed romanticism rather than aspire to it. [Jun 2005, p.108]
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    • 67 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Deep cuts like "Man or Animal" are as hot as anything this side of Led Zeppelin II. [Jul 2005, p.95]
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    • 83 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Be
    Even when the music flags, Common's remarkably hungry raps push it along. [Jun 2005, p.102]
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    • 64 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Leanness and vitality have replaced the cokey bloat of their last few studio trips. [Jun 2005, p.103]
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    • 71 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    [A] cosmos-goosing masterwork. [Jul 2005, p.104]
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    • 80 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    A lovely, eerie album that plays like a digital memory of a lo-fi lullaby. [Aug 2005, p.103]
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    • 90 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Sounds as informed by middle-American community theater, church choirs, and John Adams' American operas as any canonical "folk rock" it may resemble. [Jul 2005, p.102]
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    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Repulsion is like The Wild Bunch seen from the outskirts of Edinburgh, a European reflection of the stylized American West. [Aug 2005, p.99]
    • Spin
    • 85 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    There's a nifty kind of egolessness about the NPs: They're team players in a way that few other bands are right now. [Aug 2005, p.93]
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    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Few bands this side of Wilco float along so easily on little more than diagonally rendered elegiac noises and severe anxiety disorder. [Mar 2006, p.95]
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    • 78 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Rife with acid-burn guitars, levee-breaking drums, and vocals that recall Peter Gabriel at his wooziest. [Feb 2006, p.87]
    • Spin
    • 90 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Z
    In spite of all their stony sonic exploration, they never let Z turn into Zzzz. [Oct 2005, p.133]
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