Jersey Devil Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings

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  • Summary: The sixth full-length for Matt Mondanile as Ducktails was recorded over two years in Los Angeles and New Jersey.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Oct 6, 2017
    Jersey Devil comes with a real sense of sharp focus; cleverly worked melodies and handsomely crafted choruses come to the fore, pushing the woozy soundscapes to the back.
  2. Oct 3, 2017
    The record oscillates between earthly comforts (In the Hallway / Keeper of the Garden) and galactical ponderings (Map to the Stars), but Mannequin--a charming, disquieting simile for a claustrophobic relationship--best shows off Mondanile's ambition to step out on his own terms.
  3. 80
    This weepy and emotive record will probably be glued to many turntables; the ideal soundtrack to a morning coffee.
  4. Oct 3, 2017
    While not his most consistent crop of songs, light brushes with Steely Dan-like jazz-rock and bolder synths add flavor to a still distinctive sound that's likely to be welcomed by fans.
  5. The Wire
    Dec 19, 2017
    While he operates in similar sonic territory to Ariel Pink, Mondanile is as disarmingly gentle as Pink is strutting and cocky. [Nov 2017, p.67]
  6. Oct 3, 2017
    The gentility of groove has its appeal, but you wouldn't look to anything on Jersey Devil for super stimulation, which is just fine.
  7. Uncut
    Oct 3, 2017
    Mondanile doesn't always have the songs to pull off the silver jacket. "Wearing A Mask" hints at band beefs past, much as "In The Hallway" does to the Real Estate mode, but these and the intricate guitar licks of "Mannequin" are the only moments where Ducktails make their fusion spark. [Nov 2017, p.26]
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Nov 29, 2017
    While it would be easy to write this album off due to Ducktails frontman Matt Mondanile's personal life and the allogations made towards himWhile it would be easy to write this album off due to Ducktails frontman Matt Mondanile's personal life and the allogations made towards him recently. But taking that out of the equations, there is something to discuss...kind of. The album's sound has this unique sound of psychedelic instrumentation that is this blend of far-off feels and retro cool, much like the psychedelic hypnagogic pop made famous by indie acts like Ariel Pink and James Ferraro. To best describe what the album sounds like, take the retro weirdness of Ariel Pink, mixed with the psychedelic chilled out haze of Mac DeMarco, mixed with the 80s aesthetic on the last Neon Indian album, Vega Intl. Night School, and have it all sung by Elliott Smith. That is the album's sound. And unfortunatley it never rises above just being okay. It is pleasant to listen to, however there isn't anything all that unique outside of the chilled out sound, which unlike the artists mentioned Matt is not as gripping as he wishes he is. And while the Elliott Smith comparison can be a compliment, it really isn't because while Elliott's haunted voice works on his acoustic indie folk tunes, they don't pare well with retro psychedelic indie rock, and often Matt's vocals get drowned out in the mix. But then again if you want to listen to his average lyricism then by all means try to dig them out Expand