Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Alternative Press
    100
    A thrilling listen. [Dec 2003, p.140]
  2. No one else is making literate, story-based pop this good.
  3. Under The Radar
    90
    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]
  4. Magnet
    90
    On [Her Majesty...], the whimsy and multicolored narrative threads that represented the best of the Decemberists' terrific first album are given room to breathe. [#60, p.96]
  5. Meloy's words stir your insides like good poetry, his imaginative tales climb into your mind, set up camp and stay awhile. But without the enchanting, heart-wrenching and totally affecting power that is the consequence of The Decemberists' music, the words would not have ever found life.
  6. A glorious triumph.... The Decemberists deserve to become your new favourite band.
  7. Her Majesty rewards repeated listenings, ultimately revealing itself to be a deeper, subtler work than Castaways.
  8. Colin Meloy's songwriting makes them one of the strongest bands working today.
  9. Underneath the surface of these grand productions lies hidden undercurrents of malice, disgust and social commentary- all things that would seem to be at odds with a beautifully constructed pop song.
  10. Clever without being pretentious.
  11. The Decemberists are stuck in the past while innovating with an eye on the future.
  12. This all may sound ostentatious or showy, but it isn't: Her Majesty aims high and hits a difficult mark, delivering glorious, sometimes fantastic tales without ever getting boorish.
  13. Her Majesty the Decemberists is distinctive, where the good parts are so good that it's easy to overlook the not-so-good.
  14. Even though Her Majesty isn't quite as striking and full-formed as Castaways and Cutouts, it's still a consistently charming album that finds the band coming into its own.
  15. The band's newfound willingness to experiment leads to overkill.
  16. Uncut
    60
    Songs, without exception, are well crafted but more often than not collapse into cloying jauntiness. [Dec 2004, p.153]
  17. Blender
    40
    Staggers under the unbearable preciousness of donkey-voiced singer Colin Meloy. [Sep 2003, p.122]
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 44
  2. Negative: 5 out of 44
  1. Dec 15, 2012
    7
    This album is good. It has it's moments and several songs are so good I listened to them over and over again. However the album as a whole isThis album is good. It has it's moments and several songs are so good I listened to them over and over again. However the album as a whole is lacking especially when compared to later Decemberists albums. It's worth the money but if you're thinking of getting this album as your first Decemberists album then I'd recommend you listen to one of the later albums first. Full Review »
  2. Apr 11, 2011
    6
    Meloy still needs to diversify his sound here, but it's coming along. Her Majesty is not the treasure trove of songs that their next twoMeloy still needs to diversify his sound here, but it's coming along. Her Majesty is not the treasure trove of songs that their next two albums would be. Best songs: The Soldiering Life and The Chimbley Sweep. Full Review »
  3. VincentH
    Mar 19, 2007
    10
    I could write an extremely long essay on how much the Decemberists mean to me and how obsessed I am with them. I won't get into it, but I could write an extremely long essay on how much the Decemberists mean to me and how obsessed I am with them. I won't get into it, but needless to say picking up this album from my local library one Fall day 3 years ago changed my life. I often have a difficult time choosing between this album and "Castaways and Cutouts", and my choice often changes, but right now it's this one. I would have to say personally that this was my favorite period of theirs musically, from 2002 (their 1st album) thru 2003 when they released this album and the 5-Song EP (which contains a few of their best songs). All the songs they made from this period are classic, with "Her Majesty..." being IMO, the best indie-pop album since "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea". Full Review »