Vibe's Scores

  • Music
For 290 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 58% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 39% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 67
Highest review score: 100 The Marshall Mathers LP
Lowest review score: 20 Playing With Fire
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 9 out of 290
290 music reviews
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Eminem has crafted the best album of the year so far with The Marshall Mathers LP and it comes dangerously close to being a classic.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Truth validates the Queen Bee's position as the definitive rap vixen. [Dec 2005, p.210]
    • Vibe
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    After being imitated for the last seven years, Wu-Tang Clan returns with another chamber for today's soft and silky rap. But don't get it twisted though. Despite their last album, Wu-Tang Forever, leaving fans uneasy, the Wu's third collective work, The W is crammed with nothing but Wu-bangas.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Stankonia leaves nothing to be desired as it is energized by Outkast's clever lyrics coupled with their cutting edge production, which is an expansive take on the original Atlanta sound.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Although everything on The Ecleftic might not be for everybody, make no mistake, this album is ahead of its time. Forget about Britney Spears... Wyclef's done it again!
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Brimming with updated old-school joints, original balladry, and classic-sounding R&B, Diary finds Keys more relaxed, confident, and committed to the tunes of the '70s than ever before. [Feb 2004, p.127]
    • Vibe
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    It's monumental because it's a culmination of Jigga's natural thoughtfulness delivered with transcendent skill. [Jan 2004, p.120]
    • Vibe
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Be
    Overflowing with passion, honesty, and optimism, Be gets to the root of human experience--all the while staying beautifully soulful and funky. [Jun 2005, p.156]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    In 2008 Kanye struggled through tragedy so great that it forced him to go left. And ironically, at his darkest hour, Kanye has created his greatest album to date.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The craft is meticulous, and the sound so epic, and at times, operatic, with production from Tricky Stewart (The-Dream’s silent partner in his corporation of hits), that moments on this album comprise some of the best pop music of the decade.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Blessed with a raw authenticity and rousing presence, Buck is one of the more adaptable MCs to date. [Jul 2004, p.135]
    • Vibe
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Although the majority of The Last Meal's17 tracks are scrumptious, a couple of bland dishes found their way onto the menu. Although this album isn't quite as inventive as Doggystyle, Snoop blesses us with the right blend of West Coast gangsta funk, R&B, and that one of a kind flow we can't get enough of.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With its ice-cold beats, smoldering bass lines, and shimmering textures, this is one of the most openly erotic albums British pop has ever given us. [Apr 2003, p.178]
    • Vibe
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sparxxx has now crafted a gem, thanks to improved songwriting and nimble production. [Nov 2003, p.157]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Though age has dirtied up Green's once angelic tenor, all it takes is a swaying guitar-organ, cooing harmonies, surging horns, and rapturous lyrics to conjure up his ol' black magic. [Jan 2004, p.122]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A significant step forward. [Oct 2003, p.179]
    • Vibe
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Beyond Badu's self-appointed role as a teacher, what she does best is create really good music.... It should come as no surprise that Mama's Gun's organic feel comes from the team that helped produce D'Angelo's Voodoo. However, the most important sound of all is her unmistakable voice, making all of her songs like ornately crafted gems - even the unintelligible ones.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With Kiss of Death, Jada's well on his way to achieving hip hop immortality. [Jul 2004, p.136]
    • Vibe
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Fire In The Hole is Brand Nubian at its revolutionary apex. [Sep 2004, p.233]
    • Vibe
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A breakthrough for Slum Village. [Jul 2004, p.138]
    • Vibe
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Though his singles may not rule radio, as far as full-lengths go, this is how it should be done. [Sep 2004, p.233]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump, their most contemporary offering yet, is the trio's successful return as ousted royalty destined to reclaim their kingdom in hip hop.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    This may be the first time Madonna hasn't pushed herself to explore new ground, but at least she's chosen a good place to rest. [June 2003, p.155]
    • Vibe
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    His potent fusion of blues, R&B, funk, rock, gospel and hip hop has morphed his sound into something more Bobby Womack than Biggie. [Mar 2004, p.184]
    • Vibe
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Opting for politically charged rhymes and melodic, accessible beats, [The Roots] overflow with potential singles. [Aug 2004, p.141]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Size earns his crown as he breaks through the jungle unscathed on In the Mode. He rises above mainstream neighbors Tricky and Massive Attack to take credit for an eclectic mix of what would have been one painfully long trip if left to any old Limelight DJ.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The singer's most mature work to date. [Apr 2003, p.173]
    • Vibe
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sophisticated compositions and insightful lyrics. [Nov 2004, p.162]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    With Xzibit coming with nothing but raw and uncensored lyrics, Restless is not for those with tender ears. Formerly one of hip hop's most underrated artists, it's gonna be hard to continue to sleep on him after this album. Xzibit is finally poised to get the credit he deserves.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Brimming with energy and depth. [Nov 2004, p.160]
    • Vibe
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While it's no surprise that Destiny Fulfilled showcases advanced production values, the songwriting and vocal abilities are just as impressive. [Jan 2005, p.81]
    • Vibe
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    She's both deeply personal and relevantly dope, thriving where poetry slams and hip hop beats collide. [Sep 2004, p.231]
    • Vibe
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Delivers both ass-shakers and contemplative cuts.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The risks he takes with the production are a big part of the allure of God's Son. [Feb 2003, p.135]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The Eminem Show is a brilliant piece of theater and a guilty pleasure. [Aug 2002, p.155]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Recalls the early '90s work of A Tribe Called Quest. [Sep 2002, p.244]
    • Vibe
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Although Mystikal's last two albums earned him platinum plaques, Let's Get Ready is poised to be the album that will put him over the top.... However, Let's Get Ready does have a few slip-ups. The Neptunes-produced "Jump" - previously available on the Any Given Sunday soundtrack - displays the production team's sloppy tendency to recycle their beats.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Way, way better than just "OK." [Apr 2005, p.168]
    • Vibe
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Stacked solid with songs that chronicle her ongoing struggles through love's many stages. [Apr 2005, p.165]
    • Vibe
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Mariah gets back to her winning formula with Mimi. [May 2005, p.139]
    • Vibe
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cohesive and musically mesmerizing. [Jun 2005, p.161]
    • Vibe
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While the content is strictly sex obsessed, the range of musical styles here is as varied and satisfying as the many positions and places the album will take you. [Sep 2005, p.229]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Cole's ability to belt to her heart's content saves the album from its inconsistent production. [Jul 2005, p.137]
    • Vibe
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    There are still too many touchy-feely songs. [Oct 2005, p.161]
    • Vibe
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Clothesdrop seamlessly blends Shaggy's sharpest pop sensibilities with his (much slept-on) roughneck pedigree. [Nov 2005, p.147]
    • Vibe
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sean Paul blasts off confidently into the future with The Trinity. [Nov 2005, p.147]
    • Vibe
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Even cameos by today's hottest rappers can't shake Blige's nostalgic flair. [Mar 2006, p.186]
    • Vibe
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Even when his words don't move you, Jaheim's gorgeous voice is a rare gift that anyone--male, or female, teenaged or middle aged--can appreciate when they hear it. [Mar 2006, p.185]
    • Vibe
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The sample-heavy results are cohesive yet diverse, a proper canvas for Ghost's finest effort since Supreme Clientele. [Apr 2006, p.151]
    • Vibe
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Sure, King's occasional lack of originality and sometimes sluggish wordplay could be cited. But that, of course, would only amount to throwing rocks at the throne. [May 2006, p.136]
    • Vibe
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It sounds like Cee-Lo has found his sonic better half in Danger Mouse. [Jun 2006, p.162]
    • Vibe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Although there remains a sheen throughout, the body of the set showcases the Mobb in darker, more familiar territory. [Apr 2006, p.150]
    • Vibe
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    His delivery is crisp and uncomplicated, but razor sharp, like gangster haikus. [Jun 2006, p.159]
    • Vibe
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Shining brims with clear-cut and fully resolved ideas. [Oct 2006, p.138]
    • Vibe
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Like prior Roots albums, Game Theory boasts top-notch craftsmanship... but it's continuity that makes this album unique. [Sep 2006, p.211]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The Boys make earnest, delicate and occasionally gloomy synth-pop, but they want the pain to be danceable. [Nov 2006, p.161]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Excellent. [Oct 2006, p.142]
    • Vibe
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Together, they paint devastating emotional portraits, and they sidestep tedium by remaining rap's most lyrically inventive group. [Nov 2006, p.155]
    • Vibe
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A strong statement from a veteran still pushing his artistic boundaries. [Dec 2006, p.170]
    • Vibe
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It feels somehow safe and experimental, foundational and radical. [Jan 2007, p.110]
    • Vibe
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Despite its frustratingly uniform theme--coke--and Jeezy's inflexible, one-speed rasp, his sophomore effort, The Inspiration, suggests that last year's victories were no fluke. [Feb 2007, p.121]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Disorienting and sometimes brilliant. [Jan 2007, p.109]
    • Vibe
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Ali fuses formindable mic skills and unvarnished honesty as effectively as Eminem. [Apr 2007, p.130]
    • Vibe
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Maybe The Mix-Up woks simply because it does nothing terribily wrong.
    • Vibe
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    A resurgent Prince unleashes his strangest yet most alluring rock project since 1988's astonishing "Lovesexy." [Sep 2007, p.137]
    • Vibe
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Forever captures Common maturing graefully into his--and hip hop's--middle age at a time when many peers are either talking retirement or being forced into it. [August 2007, p73]
    • Vibe
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Suddenly with these [guest MCs] additions, a sound that felt dusty and dilapidated is now exuberant. [Sep 2007, p.137]
    • Vibe
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    His is an intrepid sound, taut and gorgeous. [Oct 2007, p.92]
    • Vibe
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Even while wearing her sexuality like an honor roll sticker, Ndegeocello is dazzlingly delicate. [Nov 2007, p.98]
    • Vibe
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The album is a celebration of LaVette's vocals--burnished, bruised but resoundingly unbeaten. [Nov 2007, p.96]
    • Vibe
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    She sounds reawakened by the calm. [Mar 2008, p.98]
    • Vibe
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Rarely does rock music feel so simultaneously orchestrated and raw. [Mar 2008, p.98]
    • Vibe
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Vampire Weekend have suceeded in putting the hips back in hipster. [Mar 2008, p.98]
    • Vibe
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    They grab hold of genres long stuck in straitjackets and, if only for a few minutes a pop, let them run amok. [Mar 2008, p.99]
    • Vibe
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Finally the loverman is back. [Mar 2008, p.100]
    • Vibe
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Of all the newish dance acts digging on vintage disco and chicago House, NYC-based Hercules & Love Affair boast the smartest cuts and most range. [June 2008, p.66]
    • Vibe
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The finished product has glorious results. [May 2008, p.69]
    • Vibe
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    It's been a long wait, but like reborn armies in the night, Third has the blare of revolution. [June 2008, p.70]
    • Vibe
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Jim
    Lidell reaches back further than he has before, appoximating Sam Cooke, Ben E. King, and even Jackie Wilson, elegantly nodding to his clarion-voiced heroes while never allowing the album to become mired in mere tribute. [May 2008, p.72]
    • Vibe
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Mobb Deep's Prodigy has embraced the chaos, pain and disarray that's cursed much of his life and used to power an angry, pained, and ironically vital album, H.N.I.C. Part 2. Prodigy's physical self may be incarcerated, but his music has never sounded freer. [Apr 2008]
    • Vibe
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    II Trill draws its cohesion from its production, a stew of juicy grooves, synth patches, and gumbo-thick basslines. But what makes the album tick is an emotional complexity: Like an old sage, Bun B gracefully vacillates between raw fury and weathered wisdom.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Lay It Down is almost indistinguishable from green's past hits. Then again, maybe that was the point. [May 2008, p.74]
    • Vibe
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While MC Naledge and producer Double-O’s impressive follow-up effort The In Crowd continues in a similarly versatile vein, the vibe this time feels less like a greenhorn B-boy coming-out party than it does a self-assured statement of purpose.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Loverly proves once again that she needs no artifice to soar musically. [July 2008, p.60]
    • Vibe
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Impressive without being pretentious, Two Men possesses an urbane strut that’s perfect for jazzheads--and their country cousins.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    ­This endearing debut from Imani Coppola’s latest side project deftly explores the ferocious singer’s favorite themes--race, two-timers, herself--over programmer Adam Pallin’s sprightly soul interpolations.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The result is arguably his best work contextually since "Death Certificate" itself.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Ne-Yo is a stronger, more confident man than the one many remember licking his wounds on 'So Sick' from his debut album "In My Own Words" and 'Do You' from 2007’s "Because of You."
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    While the new direction is sturdy and refreshing, there is something comfortably familiar about it. The vintage shoes fit Saadiq, and he wears them well.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Something Else--a sharper, more concise follow-up to 2006’s breakthrough but spotty, "The Evolution of Robin Thicke"--songwriter and producer Thicke is using the tones and rhythms of soul music for a bigger idea: dissatisfaction.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    His struggles did make for a strong album.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The brothers are nimble lyricists, delivering raps in catch-me-if-you-can fashion, exercising little patience but encouraging repeated listens.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The joyful arrangement in The Point of It All enhances Hamilton's storytelling abilities, serving as a lovely mixer to his lyrical depth and sensual, rich voice.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Unlike other albums maniacally programmed to target every pop niche (hello Jennifer Hudson!), Doolittle delivers one of the rarer qualities you’ll find in a contemporary album: a clear sense of who she is.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The Take Over--a post-modern sonic mash-up for Generation O--is Zion I’s best attempt at turning their underground crusade into an overground movement.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics is proof that not only can Arie step out of her comfort zone of relationships and self-appreciation, but she can jog up a few levels as well.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    If after swallowing that Elixer, you still have the stamina for more, you will be amply rewarded by Minneapolis Sound, or as Prince spells it, MPLSoUND.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    UGK 4 Life is a fitting end for the Texas boys. It’s classic UGK--temperamental, turbulent, and trill...for life.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Chester French have deftly balanced the thrills of newness with the reliability of the old--not bad a for a couple of graduates.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Rick Ross is on pace to make his best and most complete album yet. He knows it. And soon hip hop fans will too.