The Boston Phoenix's Scores

  • Music
For 1,091 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 63% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 34% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 74
Highest review score: 100 Pink
Lowest review score: 0 Last of a Dyin' Breed
Score distribution:
1091 music reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Not everything is new on Everything Is New, this young London singer's sophomore set, but enough is to make you wonder what on earth persuaded Jack Penate to ditch the ample charms of his terrific debut.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Of the Cathmawr Yards is Ambien-fueled folk that never rises above room temperature, well-crafted yet lacking in passion and vitality.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    These straight pop tunes are great by themselves, but after slogging through the symphonic sludge, you’re likely to find The Resistance a jumbled, forgettable tracklist.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Like any great jingle, it leaves you with nothing but a vague craving for the product, without quite knowing why you need it.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The release is not without brief visits to riff heaven, and it’s in the details that there are pleasures to be found....But too often you bop along to the tight drum/bass syncopations only to forget what you’re listening to--or worse, why.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It's all meant to sound fresh, but it doesn't always sound good.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Nothing about The Soft Pack makes you wanna know who these guys are or what they have to say about the world outside their practice space.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Gorilla Manor is listenable and inoffensive, but it doesn't express a single aforementioned component of its genre with any gusto.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    For a visionary guy like Hendrix, this glorified compilation isn't as imaginary as it could be.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The rest of the album, which was produced by James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem, never quite lives up to that early peak.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Forsaking subtly Southern melancholy in favor of jangling, twanging hillbilly heartbreak, Here's to Taking It Easy misplaces amplified country fever instead of channeling it.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Aphrodite feels like a disjointed hodge-podge of shallow Hi-NRG dance-floor bangers for a decidedly older crowd.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It would help if the songs were better, but with all the up-and-down scales and chirp-chirp-chirpiness, the American Express commercial gradually gives way to a Riverdance special on pay-per-view.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Still, like the lovable Muppet, Flaws is just a little too green to have any major impact.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Where's the band's personality? Promises glimmer everywhere, as when off-kilter instrumental breaks start stabbing away at "18th Street," but the entire album eventually drifts past without delivering anything as sonically-or emotionally-provocative.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Part of the problem is Rihanna's essential blandness in a post-Gaga/post-Idol pop market, but mostly it comes down to the siren-song nature of her amazingly recognizable voice.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Ritual is so grandiose that it rarely has room to breathe.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Nary a tippy toe strays from the well-trodden path; it's as if Lemmy and the boys spent every couple of years locked in a studio with their own discography and no outside noises that might besmirch the purity of their brand. There are occasional hints of self-awareness.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    What Spiritual, Mental, Physical documents is a group kicking around possibilities that could go somewhere great, but as they appear here, only a handful of these half-cooked ideas deserve an audience.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The contrived sheen marring much of the album dissolves, and things get industrial real quick. That dark and uncharted - for Cut Copy - territory might be the way to go heading forward.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The King of Limbs, a breezy exploration of the depths of subliminal glitch-folk, is this band's admission that the labyrinth of post–OK Computer zigs and zags they've led their audience through may never again lead to an arena-rock goldmine.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Of all the possible directions the band could have taken, they decided on generic coffeehouse folk pop, with predictably pleasant-yet-dull results.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It lacks the playfulness of the early Faust records, where the band's experiments with jazz, folk, and raunchy rock and roll were coated with acceptable degrees of avant-garde theatricality.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Safari Disco Club is unlikely to find itself in the speakers of many dance parties on this side of the Atlantic in coming weeks.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Hooks are competent and decent but never demanding enough for you to race out to get a song's lyrics embedded into your skin.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    For a densely layered, expertly produced dance-rock album, this second full-length from British three-piece Friendly Fires is perplexingly bland.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Keys and Codes, which inverts the title of Death Cab's last record, feels slapped together, which is disappointing when you consider the array of talent present.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Returning after 11 years of officially not existing, what's left of ATR could've focused their energies on kicking lots of ass. Instead, they indulge spoken-wordy, freshman-year non-profundities that mostly siphon energy from the get-up-and-f*ck-some-shit-up ethos present on a few okay tracks like "Activate" and "Codebreaker."
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Although Scattered Trees get emotionally expansive throughout this full-length debut, there's a distinct lack of production (and even playing) here, and that colors the proceedings with an anonymous hue.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Closer to Closed is a testament to the decline of Braid's teen angst, but those who grew up with the band may not recognize this aging friend.