Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 14 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
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  1. Sep 12, 2022
    90
    The group’s third album, Expert in Dying Field, is an exhilarating power-pop tour de force, replete with bristling guitar riffs and bright, infectious harmonies. It’s also a devastating exploration of anxiety, insecurity, and regret—a reflection of how, in life, there can be no true joy without sadness.
  2. Sep 20, 2022
    80
    The strength of the opening trio of tracks on Expert In A Dying Field is a potent reminder of their best attributes.
  3. Sep 16, 2022
    80
    Although a couple of songs get samey, Expert is relentlessly invigorating and grounded by the clarity of Stokes’ writing.
  4. Sep 16, 2022
    80
    The 12 tracks that make up Expert in a Dying Field are lean and propulsive, with hooks that get under the skin.
  5. Sep 15, 2022
    80
    The album also delivers on vulnerable, rock-solid songs, a juxtaposition the Beths continue to master.
  6. Sep 14, 2022
    80
    Expert In A Dying Field is the sound of a band going from strength to strength.
  7. 80
    With Expert in a Dying Field The Beths have created a bundle of sheer sonic joy that confronts, but doesn’t succumb to, all those neuroses most of us know too well.
  8. 80
    Shedding old skins with jubilance, ‘Expert in A Dying Field’ is testament to the belief that better things are always yet to come. For us as listeners, they’re already be here.
  9. Sep 13, 2022
    80
    Dying field or not, the Beths' third LP is a reaffirmation that the band are ready and willing to go down with the ship.
  10. Mojo
    Sep 12, 2022
    80
    The vigorous, often zippy arrangements finessed at guitarist Jonathan Pearce's Auckland home studio offer chipper contrast to the subject matter, Stokes a thoughtful, knowing presence. [Oct 2022, p.89]
  11. Uncut
    Sep 12, 2022
    80
    The mood of Expert In A Dying Field is yearning and reflective, as Stokes picks over the bones of relationships on mournful janglers like “Your Side”, punky rocker “Silence Is Golden”, the shimmering “Best Left” and terrific closer “2am”. [Oct 2022, p.25]
  12. Sep 14, 2022
    79
    With their first two LPs, they proved themselves to be self-aware witnesses to their own histories and heartbreaks. With the third, however, The Beths solidify themselves as expert observers of the joy and anxiety that define our time.
  13. Sep 20, 2022
    75
    The record is strongest when the band’s bright and spontaneous indie rock acts as a foil to Stokes’ anxiety-filled lyrics. This fusion processes the tangled emotions of lost love and helps make it bearable—something few records can do.
  14. Sep 12, 2022
    60
    The album’s tendency towards soft and sugary can sometimes grate a little, especially when the band sound so vital and exciting when they amp up the dirt and energy (Silence is Golden; I Told You That I Was Afraid). Overall though, this is a solid collection of bittersweet pop gems for anyone with half a heart.

Awards & Rankings

User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 6 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 1 out of 6
  1. Sep 20, 2022
    10
    Largely doubling down on the easy charm of the sumptuous vocal harmonies, gently self-deprecating lyrics and impeccably crafted guitar-popLargely doubling down on the easy charm of the sumptuous vocal harmonies, gently self-deprecating lyrics and impeccably crafted guitar-pop sound that have thus far defined The Beths' discography, the "ain't broke, don't fix it" approach of "Expert in a Dying Field" won't likely win over anyone not swayed by the group thus far but ensures the record is a start-to-finish delight for the already initiated.

    Choice Cuts: "Expert in a Dying Field," "Knees Deep," "Your Side," "Head in the Clouds," "2am"
    Full Review »
  2. Sep 23, 2022
    10
    This is the second straight absolutely brilliant album from the New Zealand quartet. Guitar-driven alt pop is their perfected niche andThis is the second straight absolutely brilliant album from the New Zealand quartet. Guitar-driven alt pop is their perfected niche and Expert In A Dying Field is wonderful from start to finish. The title track leads it off and that is a total banger. It might well end up my #1 song of the year. Silence is Golden, Knees Deep, Head In The Clouds, & When You Know You Know all are fresh and high quality. This is one of my favorite albums of 2022. Full Review »
  3. Sep 16, 2022
    8
    Not as edgy as their first two singles. However, there are a lot of good songs on here. Silence Is Golden is my favorite song this year.