Under The Radar's Scores

  • TV
  • Music
For 3,453 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 36% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 60% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 6.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Love Kraft
Lowest review score: 0 Burned Mind
Score distribution:
3,453 music reviews
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It's just that damn good. [#7]
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Other than the fact that it came out a little late, there isn't a single thing wrong with it. [#8, p.113]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A work that's at once blissfully romantic, ominously dark, and ridiculously imaginative. [#10, p.107]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Elbow have always been the most intelligent band in Britain. Now they're the most exciting, too. [#12, p.91]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Manages the not-at-all-easy feat of sounding remarkably undated and, well, timeless. [#39, p. 72]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Far from a collector's item for die-hard fan only, this is the most complete and perfect presentation of one of the key albums of a generation. [Jan-Feb 2013, p.92]
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    There are decades of material here and plenty to revel in for years to come.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The real beauty of all the context provided here for this batch of songs is not that it extols or magnifies, but that it humanizes.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    It's a treasure trove of Britpop and English musical history, a veritable panoply of musical goodness.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Today though, with the skyline dominated by the likes of Kanye West and Plan B on their respective sides of the Atlantic, to hear this genuinely groundbreaking group in such magnificent high definition is probably the closest we're going to get to going back to any of today's megastar's roots.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 95 Critic Score
    Twenty-two years in the making or not, this is a return that captivates, excites, and is relentless in its grab for your attention. It's the perfect comeback.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is pop music, filtered through the minds, hands and voices of two artists whose vision reaches beyond the bounds of the form. [#7]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Year-end best-of lists, you've been warned. [#10, p.106]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Quasi have managed to drive their sound in a completely new direction without becoming self-indulgent. [#5, p.102]
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This time around, a more restrained approach means a less exhausting listening experience. [#5, p.99]
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Where B.R.M.C. merely boiled, Take Them On is positively frothing. [#5, p.100]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Magnetic.... There isn't an uninteresting song on the whole thing. [#5, p.110]
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An incredible electronic journey... A perfect ending for both Orbital and for fans. [#7]
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Even though the stylistic diversity of the first album isn't present, it's hard not to get caught up in the dreamy spell that The Bees weave. [#7]
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An astoundingly accomplished collection of flawlessly interesting and compulsively beautiful songs. [#8, p.109]
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Part commercial breakthrough, part acoustic folk record, part experiment, More Adventurous gives little indication of where Rilo Kiley's sound is headed. [#7]
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's as though The Decemberists have been able to somehow summon that mystical muse that allows for all of the wonder of the musical world to open. [#5, p.100]
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Perhaps Harcourt's strongest asset is in making the hackneyed sound fresh. [#8, p.106]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    If you appreciate intelligent and literate lyrics, and are not put off by theatrical orchestration in your pop songs, then this is as good a Divine Comedy album as any to immerse yourself in the considerable talents of Neil Hannon. [#7]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A wholly stunning album. [#7]
    • 60 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The album is Westerberg at his extremes. [#7]
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is emotional anarchy at its prime--urgent, passionate and honest. [#7]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An important, modestly beautiful album that is both heartbreaking and conversely optimistic--an exceptional piece of work that begs to be discovered. [#7]
    • 65 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An unstoppable, intense and astonishing assault on the senses that gives a respectable nod to the past while it blazes a trail to the future. [#9]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    There is a certain confidence inherent in these tracks, as if Smith had finally proven to himself that he didn't need to try to outdo The Beatles in his arrangements. [#7]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's their best yet, and that's saying something. [#5, p.100]
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The ice from Vespertine has melted, and Bjork's voice sounds reborn like a phoenix from the flame. [#7]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It may not be the band's definitive moment... but, arguably, it is the experimental indie pop album of the summer. [#7]
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The inclusion of organic instruments really takes M83's keyboard-based material to the next level. [#8, p.107]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A fantastic work of art from a modern master of pop music. [#9]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A crowning achievement. [#9]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The songs all sound cleaner and tighter than those off the critically praised Lapalco, but instead of over-produced banality you're left with pure pop perfection. [#9]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The group had a lot of hype to live up to and they nearly managed to do it. [#9]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Some of the best-written songs of this new century. [#9]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A shiny gem of a record. [#9]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An indie epic smeared with doubt and guilt that flows out of a forced smile. [#10, p.113]
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An immersive experience that has unexpected turns and deep emotions at the core of every song. [#10, p.114]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The New Pornographers shine because every member gets their due. [#10, p.107]
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    However beguilingly perfect their debut was, Noah's Ark surpasses it in nearly every aspect. [#10, p.105]
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Supergrass hasn't bothered with an unnatural, radical shift into experimental sounds and ideas; rather, they've simply recorded their fifth studio album. [#11, p.112]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is the sound of things all falling apart, and few albums this year have sounded better. [#11, p.105]
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    One of the year's best. [#11, p.107]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    One of the year's most unlikely breakthroughs. [#11, p.105]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The rare album that works even better in execution than it does in theory, one that rises far above the genre exercise it could have been. [#12, p.90]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The songs feel and sound organic and have an eerily timeless quality in their emotional universality. [#12, p.93]
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Wondrous. [#12, p.91]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Lanegan's smoky voice suits these songs perfectly, and when combined with Campbell's angelic whisper and lush but not overdone orchestration, the result is a sound that is naturally mysterious and utterly affecting. [#12, p.89]
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The wondrous beauty of Yoshimi hasn't been abandoned entirely... but the fighting spirit throughout At War With The Mystics is what truly sustains it. [#13, p.85]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Throughout, Skinner's production is more precise, his hooks more pointed and polished, and his writing more clever and poignant. [#13, p.89]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Ships reinforces the fact that he's a songwriter of considerable depth and pop craftsmanship, and this album is his most ambitious and accessible yet. [#13, p.84]
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's too early to call Scale a classic, but... Herbert has achieved one of the deftest balances of pop music and politics heard in some time. [#13, p.86]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A gorgeous pop album, to say the least. [#14]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    As a whole, the songs presented on The Sun Awakens come across as a work of art, evoking a response and then either building or contrasting to it. [#14]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Return to Cookie Mountain sweats off most of the band’s more head-scratching impulses and leaves a manic, depressive, exhilarating album of experimental pop. [#15]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The results are what you would expect given its pedigree. In fact, it’s hard to imagine Gainsbourg and company pulling this off any better. [#17, p.85]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Ys
    The full orchestra doesn’t smack of overproduced grandiosity, which is a nice surprise. Less surprising, of course, is the album's incredible lyrical density. [#15]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A layered and beautiful work that solidifies The Shins as The Band That Matters. [#16, p.94]
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Functions as an AM Gold collection filtered through Swedish shortwave radio with indie sensibilities. [#16, p.93]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Tones of Town carries the precision, sophistication, and sense of fun that made predecessor brainy pop bands like XTC so damned good. [#16, p.91]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Although Funeral is the better album, Neon Bible comes close enough without being a rehash. [#17, p.90]
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    You will be hearing more about Pop Levi. For now I’d recommend you simply hear more of Pop Levi—this shit is fantastic.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A big, fun, and passionate record that sounds enormous. [#16, p.92]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Not just an album that revisits the dancey guitar-pop that made "Float On" an unlikely #1 hit, but sharpens and emboldens it for their most accessible album to date. [#16, p.93]
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Their overarching fingernail-meets-chalkboard eeriness... is what prevents a lapse into the preciousness that sometimes accompanies orchestrated indie rock, making the album a rousing success. [#16, p.90]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    More sonically and lyrically ambitious than 2005’s I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning and more fully realized than the scattershot Digital Ash In A Digital Urn, Cassadaga is Oberst’s most affecting and challenging full-length to date, and proves that he’ll be a defining figure in folk music for many years to come. [#17, p.83]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    An unruly beast filled with vim and vigor, unrestrained in fits of rage, questioning, and discontent. [#17, p.87]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Each song is expertly crafted, with an amazingly punchy set of melodies delivered by an extremely tight band with sometimes larger arangements that never become fussy. [Summer 2007, p. 76]
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Maybe In Rainbows is their life--settling into things, creating permanence. If so, we may grow to miss the anger and the striving and the discovery that comes as a result. But for now, we can enjoy the beauty of Radiohead understanding their identity and the craftsmanship that lies in comfort.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Each song unfolds so effortlessly one imagines it springing forth, fully formed, with the same exaggerated inevitability of a cartoon bubble sprouting above his head. [Fall 2007, p.74]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Rock Music goes further, showcasing a fully mature band turning out immense tracks that combine the best elements from their previous works. [Winter 2008, p.80]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    In the Future is without a chink in its armor, the rare lull-free album, and shows that perhaps their greatest moments are indeed yet to come. [Winter 2008, p.80]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is likely to be the most fun release of the year. [Winter 2008, p.84]
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The Seldom Seen Kid finds Elbow maturing into their sonic ambitions, adding a sorely missed depth to their ever-present innovation. [Summer 2008]
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A lyrical and musical knockout, spearheaded by the miraculous 'Fools,' Visiter could be one of the best albums of the year. [Spring 2008, p.82]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Parc Avenue was carefully constructed to open your eyes to the subtle beauty of everyday life and it suceeds effortlessly. [Spring 2008, p.84]
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Saturdays=Youth contains some of the band's best songs to date. [Spring 2008, p.77]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Third concludes with a string of stunners that feature sawing cello, improvisatory bursts of horns, and the most cathartic vocal performance Gibbons has ever set to tape, respectively. [Spring 2008, p.79]
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Many songs play out like shared "private" jokes but succeed all the time. [Spring 2008, p.75]
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Narrow Stairs proves that with Death Cab For Cutie, it's possible to relax and let them do their own thing. Which is a remarkable thing indeed. [Spring 2008, p.75]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Tone is an alchemic process, and Fleet Foxes produce gold with regularity, a stunning feat for such a young band. [Summer 2008]
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    In terms of recording, speeding up, and trimming down he has produced one of his most intimate and exhilarating albums to date. [Summer 2008]
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Acid Tongue establishes Jenny Lewis as an idiosyncratic talent in her own right. [Fall 2008, p.76]
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Olausson’s quirky observations are only as good as the band backing her. And as it herks and jerks, skanks, and generally rocks the fuck out across A Hundred Things, it constantly reminds that Love Is All is one of the tightest pop outfits on the planet. [Year End 2008]
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Like all of Welcome To Mali, the underpinnings of 'I Think Of You' are fantastically layered, with a combination of precision timing and in-the-moment passion. [Winter 2009, p.68]
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    For the uninitiated, curious, or those simply looking for a one-stop overview, there is no better place for a comprehensive distillation of Danielson’s joyful noises. [Winter 2008]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Brighten the Corners has held up nicely and reminds us of the special gift Pavement had for hyper-literate songwriting that was humorous and heartfelt all at once. [Year End 2008]
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Dear John is Svanangen’s true masterpiece. [Winter 2009]
    • 96 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    As a concept album, listeners will need to forgo Gainsbourg's typical mixed bag of song structures within an album in favor of more similar songs threaded with recurring musical motifs. [Spring 2009, p.80]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This is a superb record, a spirted illustration of sepia-tinged Americana that feels linked inextricably with Animal Collective's "Merriweather Post Pavillion" as one of the not only most hyped, but also finest records of 2009. [Spring 2009, p.66]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    In an era of scripted and calculated music, the fly-by-the-seat-of-their-pants Dirty Projectors thrill at every blind turn they barrel through. [Summer 2009, p.65]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    This music has history in its chords, and it is as powerful today as it was 20 years ago. [Holiday, 2009, p.80]
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Stripped for much of the time of the horns and orchestral adornment of the first disc, Newsom turns a celebration into a confessional. Just when it seems Newsom couldn't possibly have any more rabbits in her hat, the third disc contains some gospel flourishes that concentrate her voice in a whole new way, bending down low to grab some bit of soul.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    With a smoky voice reminiscent of Dusty Springfield, Burhenn wrings all emotions out of these tracks with seeming effortlessness.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    James Murphy absolutely crushes the follow up, placing him on the shortlist of artists that truly matter, [Spring 2010, p.64]
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Trying to put The Suburbs in historical context at this stage is difficult, but it evokes Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation in its evocation of political discontent coupled with sheer white noise outbursts.