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 1.9 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:
1,091 music reviews
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The General Strike sticks to the same supposedly state-smashing standards that drove the previous six or so albums from these Pittsburgh-bred punks into redundancy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Lissy Trullie sounds simultaneously hungry and tepid, as if Trullie wants to make a big splash, but her album lacks the conviction or vision to make it happen.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Their most subdued effort yet.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Great Lake Swimmers' sugar-sweet ditties easily drift in one ear and, unfortunately, out the other.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    On "Cynic's New Year," Portland, Ore., indie-folk duo Horse Feathers stick so firmly to their sonic guns that it becomes tightly constricting.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Polished, tuneful, and utterly unmemorable.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Despite the raucous vibe, Diamond Rugs is flawed - scattered, unfocused, and rather long, at 14 tracks.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Although the Cribs are very good at what they do, the songwriting on the album just feels tired and unfocused.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    For a while, Magic Hour - the band's fourth full-length - lives up to the promise of its hilarious, zebra-centric-2001: A Space Odyssey cover art. But the wheels fall off with "Year of Living Dangerously," a campy, aimless doodle not even rescued by its random violin solo.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Diver is depressingly one-note, trimming back the band's scope and muscle. For some reason, Callan Clendenin sings every line in the same tiring, vacant croon, and its charm fades with each track, as does the Garageband-style production.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Yes, there are some colorful, more fully realized moments toward the end, but all the mumbling and fussing it takes to get there is murder.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There just isn't much personality on display here: Icky Blossoms strive for in-your-face decadence, but most of the time, they sound like every other anonymous dance-pop act on the planet.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Steam Days is usually pretty, but it's also a snooze.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Sun
    Bland, quasi-political lyrics and zonked-out, dead-end textures.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Individually, these songs pack an emotional wallop, performed with a passion that is rare in today's indie-rock scene of disconnected cool. But taken as a giant lump, they're exhausting dead-ends: 12 straight climaxes cancel each other out - and Babel could use a little rising action.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    And so it goes with Mogwai's A Wrenched Virile Lore: a broad range of electro producers, ambient knob-twiddlers, and singer-songwriters re-assemble the Scottish post-rock champs' most recent studio album, the excellent Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will, mostly with shitty bonus-feature-styled results.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    For the jaded among us, this is regressive and full of genre-contrivance.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The results are hit-or-miss.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    In exploring his split psyche, T.I. forgets what made the excursion interesting to begin with: there’s good and evil in everyone, but you gotta mix the two to get a reaction.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    For a gangster, Banks sure plays it safe.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    So far--on two full-lengths and a pair of EPs--the results have been underwhelming. That trend continues on this homonymous disc.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    There’s plenty in the way of ambition on Widow City, but little substance to back it up.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    They don’t always succeed on Walk It Off, in part because producer Dave Fridmann’s oversaturated-in-both-senses-of-the-word indie-psych sound does them no favors in their attempt to establish an identifiable TNT brand.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    The lyrics are nonsense about grotesque surgeries and a futuristic interface of man and machine; they’re sung with a weariness that suggests that even the singer is fatigued with this kind of thing.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    Gordon isn’t much of a tune man; his melodies rarely take a memorable shape here, and his adenoidal singing turns what he does have into open-mic mush. The lyrics, too, are on a pretty low burn.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    This record is a sequel to 2007’s "The Stage Names," and it shares its predecessor’s concerns: artifice, authenticity, and above all, the sniveling insincerity of hazy-eyed media zombies.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    Even Folds’s knack for a well-placed f-bomb has devolved into a lazy device masquerading as irreverence. His attitude may remain young at heart, but his irony’s over the hill.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    With a slapdash track list that intersperses previously unreleased cuts with lightly retooled versions of tunes from Left Eye's import-only solo debut, Eye Legacy still feels like an after-the-fact throw-away, one that makes you wonder just what its creators were attempting to say about their dearly departed friend.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    The music simply crawls by in a maddeningly static mid-tempo blur, going about its melancholy business on the way to nowhere.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 37 Critic Score
    B.S. includes far more filler than it needed to.