The Wire's Scores

  • Music
For 1,568 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 51% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 45% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 72
Highest review score: 100 Kid A
Lowest review score: 10 Amazing Grace
Score distribution:
1568 music reviews
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The album suffers at points from fastidiously clean production; it’s not just lo-fi romanticism to want to hear musicians of Vieux’s calibre in settings that are less polished. [Jun 2017, p.76]
    • The Wire
    • 79 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Farrell’s production is funky and deep throughout, but it’s sometimes a touch too downbeat; Kidjo is imperious on the chemically propelled “Dombolo”, Nneka spits controlled fire on the dubby “La Dame Et Ses Valises”, but tracks like “Wedding” and “Nebao” are sonic tar pits from which their stars struggle to escape. [Jun 2017, p.76]
    • The Wire
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This set represents a powerful statement on multiculturalism without any need for proselytising. [Jun 2017, p.74]
    • The Wire
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Those who were there the first time round will enjoy playing spot-the-sample on these hyperactive cut ’n’ shuts; for anyone else, it’s a strange one. Inarguably fun, but you’re left scratching your head, wondering why. [Jun 2017, p.74]
    • The Wire
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    async is an exceptionally beautiful record, in the way that maths is beautiful, quite free of rhetoric or ‘effects’. Its coherence of tonality and timbre gives it the feel of an imaginary soundtrack and yet each track has its own internal logic and direction which means that it never sounds like a grab-bag of musical supervisor’s cues but like a proper album of songs. [Jun 2017, p.70]
    • The Wire
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Crescent’s first album in a decade is certainly a memoir, and one as evocative and impressionistic as you might expect, where the fall of sunlight on a window or a late-night touring mishap--“I’m opening up the van/And the cymbals crash/All across the street/In the clear night” (“I’m Not Awake”)--stay lodged in the heart and mind far longer than any 12" release. [Jun 2017, p.69]
    • The Wire
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    They make it sound easy, and there are moments where that ease works in their favour. “Exalted” has the same gliding grace as the best moments on Moore’s last album of songs, The Best Day; conversely the way Shelley and Googe bear down on “Aphrodite” is quite satisfying. Still, the record could have used a more contrarian filter. [Jun 2017, p.67]
    • The Wire
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Progress really doesn’t come into it. Rather, each track here, particularly the bumpin’ highlights “Cosoco” and “Cara De Espojo”, can be seen simultaneously as both a refinement and amplification of everything that has made Molina’s music such a rare delight over the past decade. [Jun 2017, p.67]
    • The Wire
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There’s a gracefulness to Patton’s rhythms that sets her apart from other footwork producers--something deeply contemplative. [Jun 2017, p.66]
    • The Wire
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There are some satisfying rushes of buzzing sawtooth waves, and luminous passages that hail back to the Workshop’s glory days. But the most successful tracks let their beautiful and odd electronic timbres breathe on their own, rather than adding them as a dressing or a side dish for the piano melodies, or other attempts at constructing a more conventional pop backbone. [Jun 2017, p.65]
    • The Wire
    • 95 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A less deranged response to celebrity than Kanye West’s Yeezus, more imaginative than Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers LP or Lil Wayne’s Tha Carter III, it shares with the former an economy of form, and with the latter two the giddy energy of an artist coming into perfect sync with their audience. It’s also a sumptuous sounding pop record, polite streamlined mass market psychedelia. [Jun 2017, p.64]
    • The Wire
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    With all this pent-up anger channelled into a nicely weird record, faUSt call their thrown-together team effort of improv and agitation “enlightened dilletantism”. As a jumbled response to unfolding chaos on Planet Earth, Fresh Air delivers a welcome jolt of energy. [Jun 2017, p.64]
    • The Wire
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Triplicate’s greatest triumph is to strip cheap sentiment from the poetry by dimming the lacquer of the brass and muting the swagger of the singer, leaving the songs to crackle like revenant vignettes in the wireless of the mind. [May 2017, p.63]
    • The Wire
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    It’s an overegged pudding at times, but to its credit Versus is anything but polite; with brass and bass to the fore, Craig chips away at our preconceptions--he’s here for more than the black tie and polite applause. [Jun 2017, p.61]
    • The Wire
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Best Troubador is a joyous reclamation of song, gentle and true to Oldham’s personal, more delicate style. [Jun 2017, p.60]
    • The Wire
    • 92 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Six decades later, this 90 minute slab of previously unreleased Monk reveals some strikingly fresh angles on his working methodology. [May 2017, p.68]
    • The Wire
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    There’s a telling lack of conviction when he uses the past tense saying “I used to feel so devastated… now we on our way to greatness”. It’s a shame because when he settles for articulating rage from a less lofty position at the centre of a crowd he’s rejuvenated, alongside Schoolboy Q, J Cole, Styles P and Kirk Knight admitting a burn in his gut and boasting of how he’s “flowing religiously... Amerikkka’s worst nightmare, the super predator”. [May 2017, p.62]
    • The Wire
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    In flashes it could be a parallel universe in which Mahavishnu Orchestra ended up inventing Japanese city pop: a luxuriously hi-tech vision of urban utopia. But just as often it has the futile atmosphere of those projects in which string quartets would perform Aphex Twin. [May 2017, p.61]
    • The Wire
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Whether it’s political (the second half looks pretty Brexit: “Aftermath”, “Catastrophe Anthem”, “Living Fantasy”, “Un UK”) or more private, there’s something at stake in every track. [May 2017, p.61]
    • The Wire
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The more they change, the more ADULT. sound the same: pared down electro pulses, synth jabs with industrial elbows, and Nicola Kuperus’s passive-aggressive post-Slits lilt. [May 2017, p.61]
    • The Wire
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    When he muses on ideal love it comes off like How To Dress Well with a bit of a John Mayer wink--Vulnicura this ain’t. Longstreth is a talented producer and arranger and it shows here. ... Shame about the lyrics. [May 2017, p.59]
    • The Wire
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The weakest moments of this set are those that try to bludgeon the listener with noise. [May 2017, p.57]
    • The Wire
    • 80 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    As the 12 minute “The Lure Of The Mine” closes out this odd and enigmatic record in typically relentless fashion, the sensation is one of standing back and watching, impressed but stubbornly, confusingly unmoved. [May 2017, p.56]
    • The Wire
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    There’s one serious misfire, a skit where Crazy Titch reassures us that everyone in his prison block agrees you’re never “too gang to listen Stormzy”, but mostly his wariness lends the album a series of unresolved tensions more perfectly poised than any other grime album to date. [May 2017, p.55]
    • The Wire
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Arca’s operatic tone adds another layer to the expression of emotion and open sexuality in his work--“Piel” and “Coraje” being particularly striking. Ghersi’s voice emerges quietly, piercing through foreboding sonics with sombre gentleness. [May 2017, p.54]
    • The Wire
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    The album never quite wallows in gross out carnage or tragedy or blame (though these are here, for sure), but spins these yarns, perverse detail at a time, with the laconic humour of a short story by Richard Brautigan or Thomas Pynchon, stopping just short of mockery. [May 2017, p.53]
    • The Wire
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    [Arthur Jeffes] often seems over-cautious. ... Yet when Jeffes reins in a tendency to over-orchestrate, he shares his father’s talent for painting delightful scenes with limited palettes. [May 2017, p.53]
    • The Wire
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The record is a meditation on masculinity, both lyrically and musically. But it is a sombre, barely lustful masculinity that growls and shrieks and howls and tells stories here. [May 2017, p.52]
    • The Wire
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Mr Mitch’s productions are as fastpaced, tight and spirited as his DJ sets. He makes the most of these sparse landscapes, marking a path for a complex of emotions to bleed though. Part of the album’s charm is that Mitch doesn’t shy away from adopting a pop sensibility nor embracing love as his subject matter. [May 2017, p.51]
    • The Wire
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Marshall’s electronic, krautrock-ish backing tracks extended what Lanegan had previously laid down on previous albums Blues Funeral and Phantom Radio. Gargoyle however has more of an early 1980s UK electronic rock feel, with Lanegan’s rough vocal rasp sawing through musical timbres reminiscent of what was being played out at Manchester’s Factory. [May 2017, p.47]
    • The Wire