2020 Image
Metascore
82

Universal acclaim - based on 12 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 28 Ratings

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  • Summary: The sixth full-length release for the British singer-songwriter was recorded by Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs' Sam Grant.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. Oct 14, 2019
    100
    This is possibly Dawson’s best work. Yes, it’s tough-going – you’ve probably realised he REALLY doesn’t dig this country of ours right now – but the blend of smarts, art and heart is more than enough to demand your ears on repeat.
  2. Oct 10, 2019
    100
    Capping off a decade where he has announced and solidified himself as possibly the country’s finest songwriter, Richard Dawson has produced another record of incredible melodic talent, compositional nouse and gloriously empathic writing.
  3. Oct 11, 2019
    100
    Each of the songs here are Palme d’Or-worthy Loachian masterpieces, full of quiet tenacity on an island slowly turning sour. Playing almost every instrument, Dawson has scaled up from folk and blues to bigger, pop-facing arrangements with some of his heartiest tunes yet.
  4. Oct 10, 2019
    80
    It would be a stretch to say that this album is easy going, but it’s probably the most accessible of his records. It’s exciting to find such an artist trying out more populist forms.
  5. The Wire
    Oct 16, 2019
    80
    Bringing further gravitas and grace to mundanity, he continues in the business of poetically detailing everyman strife and significant moments. [Oct 2019, p.50]
  6. Oct 17, 2019
    78
    On 2020, the arrangements are proudly inorganic as they lurch and blast, sputter and break. The long-form structure of the record feels more like a short story collection, and taking it in front-to-back can have an overwhelming, exhausting effect. But unlike the sometimes hopeless characters in his songs, Dawson can wield this glut of information in his favor.
  7. Mojo
    Oct 10, 2019
    60
    [Album opener Civil Servant is] sonically inventive, with vocoder interludes and a rousing final call of "Refuse! Refuse!," but its on-the-nose swipes at "Bus-fulls of meat...staring at phone-screens" can't avoid the patronising tone of 95 per cent of all songs about "the workers," written by those otherwise employed. ... Far better are songs where Dawson locates the misery and mystery of life in smaller worlds and stranger vignettes. [Nov 2019, p.90]

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 1 out of 3
  1. Oct 13, 2019
    10
    A spectacular, genre-defying observation of contemporary Britain. Amazingly creative, skilful, melodic, crushing and heartbreaking, it’sA spectacular, genre-defying observation of contemporary Britain. Amazingly creative, skilful, melodic, crushing and heartbreaking, it’s brilliantly done. I’m still taking it all in. People will still be listening to this in 1000 years, if they still have record players. Expand
  2. Oct 11, 2019
    10
    I was terrified that this album could never live up to the achievement that was Peasant. But it does.
  3. Oct 14, 2019
    1
    The album has some great songs but I think there's missing something different and new...