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Hotel Paper Image
Metascore
57

Mixed or average reviews - based on 10 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 40 Ratings

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  • Summary: MTV darling Michelle Branch returns with an attempt to duplicate the success of her 2001 debut 'The Spirit Room' and that album's single "Everywhere," which was just that.

Top Track

Breathe
I've been driving for an hour Just talking to the rain You say I've been driving you crazy and its keeping you away So just give me one good... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Spin
    75
    Boasts road-toughened guitars and a welcome accusatory edge. [Aug 2003, p.116]
  2. So, it's not exactly a musical revolution in the making, but it'll sure be easier to tell her apart from Vanessa Carlton from now on.
  3. Q Magazine
    60
    If not as catchy (or stroppy) as Avril Lavigne, she is never less than efficient. [Aug 2003, p.102]
  4. Sadly for such weighty themes of trust, betrayal, loneliness, living out of a suitcase and long distance relationships, the lack of true darkness amongst the sweetness and light is a little frustrating.
  5. Hotel Paper treads the line between rushed brilliance and rushed dross.
  6. Entertainment Weekly
    50
    The inescapable girlishness in her voice heightens the unlived-in quality of hackneyed, loverlorn ballads like "Desperately," the least desperate-sounding song of 2003. [Jun 27/Jul 4 2003, p.136]
  7. In the course of the album, it's hard not to notice that all the songs sound the same, and for that matter, they all sound the same as that Avril Lavigne song about the damn cold night, even if Michelle technically got there before Avril.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Sep 26, 2019
    10
    Michelle surely had no sophomore slump with Hotel Paper, containing rousing anthems like Breathe and the cryptically beautiful Are You HappyMichelle surely had no sophomore slump with Hotel Paper, containing rousing anthems like Breathe and the cryptically beautiful Are You Happy Now? all sung by a pop artist with real pipes. Desperately is also an underrated gem. Really fail to comprehend how people did not enjoy this album upon first listen. It surely did for me. One of the most under-appreciated pop artists of the 2000s and an album relatively forgotten compared to the Spirit Room (also a great album!). Expand
  2. JonathanF
    Oct 3, 2003
    10
    Michelle's album is definetly a 10. No other albulm comes close to her. Also no other voice can compete with hers either. Her songs are Michelle's album is definetly a 10. No other albulm comes close to her. Also no other voice can compete with hers either. Her songs are so inspiring and you just get soft and mushy listening to them. Her lyrics are unmatched. I am not saying this because I have a crush on her its becauses I know its true. All I have to say now is that (I'm happy now). P.S. this is not my email adress i just used it to get my rating in Expand
  3. BradS
    Jun 26, 2003
    10
    This CD is truly amazing, a lot of feel good tracks. She shows a lot of growth from Spirit Room, Michelle at her best.
  4. KatV
    Aug 31, 2004
    10
    It's so awesome!! I listen to it obsessively every day still!!
  5. May 10, 2021
    9
    Empty handed is one of the best songs i've ever heard. The power and emotion on it is just amazing, and Tuesday Morning, Are You Happy Now,Empty handed is one of the best songs i've ever heard. The power and emotion on it is just amazing, and Tuesday Morning, Are You Happy Now, Breathe and the beautiful It's You, are also highlights on the album. The rest of the album is not bad at all, but quite forgettable, although it contains great songwriting and the collaboration with Sheryl Crow is lovely. A great work by a pop rock icon that can step on my neck any day of the week. Expand
  6. Nov 20, 2021
    8
    Loved this alternative, country and rock feel. Amazing voice and solo artist. “Are you happy now” is my favourite.
  7. MichaelB
    Jul 10, 2005
    5
    Mediocre as a follow up and not hugely impressive or different from her debut. Im a fan; but i was dissapointed. Especially with other young Mediocre as a follow up and not hugely impressive or different from her debut. Im a fan; but i was dissapointed. Especially with other young contemporaries developing so fast Expand

See all 17 User Reviews