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 Teen Dream
Lowest review score: 0 Last of a Dyin' Breed
Score distribution:
1091 music reviews
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    They are a hell of a band if you're looking for catchy rock with occasional sparks of brilliance.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    He sounds like the dude from Blink-182 - just another suburban punk whining about this and that.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    The results are surprisingly tame, if not un-rocking.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Transference, the Austin band's seventh full-length, will serve as another whittling down of the singular aesthetic that has made them one of the most engaging American bands of the past decade.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    What BYOP now lack is the element of surprise that made their debut such a kick; they no longer sound as if they had something to prove, and that drains their music of much of its charm.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    While lukewarm as a whole, The Messenger doesn't suck nearly enough to bruise Marr's status as a guitar deity on wheels.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Ire Works is good science tarnished slightly by one bad experiment.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    The downside of this open-armed approach is a lack of sonic specificity; OnMyRadio occasionally blands out into a nondescript stew of melismatic vocals and slow-jam beats.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Minus the Bear seemed more serious about their music than about its presentation.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Listening to the new MGMT album requires similar preparations to those for a prolonged psychedelic experience: you may want to leave some time in your daybook for unexpected detours, and it'd be wise to erase previous experiences from your mind for fear that heightened expectations may not be met and mass bummerage will ensue.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Blackout may be more a tribute to the skills of the A-list producers who guided her through the disc than to any of her own talents.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    No one song here will change your life, but there are some that could come close.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Factory doesn't entirely squander the goodwill built up by their recent excellent reunion tour, but it's not significantly better than the standard Pollard solo album of the last decade.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    It works, sometimes.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Future This is ultimately more melodic than its laborious predecessor. But around the "ballads" in the second half, you start longing for a point.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Only the nuttiest of fans will find any new details (the more-present backing vocals on Agaetis Byrjun stunner "Svefn-g-englar," or the beefed-up church organ swirl in "Ny Batteri"), even if the band's live majesty is captured in full-force.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    This, their third album is as ambitious as its predecessors but mutes the joy in favor of a more serious tone and tighter focus--well, as tight as an album with a 10-minute number called 'Dragon's Lair' can be. The results are mixed.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Inasmuch as Stereolab have accomplished pretty much everything they could, Not Music feels like a passive retread.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Frontman Ross Flournoy and his mates kick up a ramshackle jangle-pop racket that gets its energy from always sounding as if it were on the verge of falling apart.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Gira's career has been one of violations and risks; there are plenty here. However, his trademark brand of post-rock/ambient alienation may finally leave listeners indifferent.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Even though the album's zany unpredictability can be thrilling, it often feels like Banks is adorning vacant tunes ("Arise Awake," the plodding instrumental "Another Chance") with bells and whistles.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Fans and detractors alike get exactly what they expect with bratty rockers like 'Outta My Head' and 'Rulebreaker,' but things seem to “get real” a bit with a more-introspective (if you can call it that) track like 'Murder (I Get Away With).'
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    For the most part, Ten$ion is a letdown in its utter normalcy.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    This Pleasure is known, but in the end it overstays its welcome.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Much like the show’s second season, this second disc fails to build on its predecessor, rehashing the same digs at male bravado, emotional insecurity, and musical eccentricity.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Cosmogramma is decidedly more, uh, cosmic, than his 2008 "Los Angeles," in its atmospheric spiral away from the beat and toward a more free-flowing collage of instrumentation.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Breakout is a puzzling mishmash that makes sense only if you read between the lines and see the 15-year-old trapped in a machine that is partly of her own design.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    I had to make several return trips to the lyric sheet to clear up which songs were love letters and which were screw-yous. But this sort of tone-deaf emotional bludgeoning tends to work in her favor on monstrous power ballads.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    As Real Estate grinds on, it settles into a monotony of its own, until you can hardly distinguish one hazy nod-off jam from another.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    The group often stretch their net too wide for their own good. Rolling Blackouts is more indecisive mixtape than flowing album.