• Record Label: Mute
  • Release Date: Nov 20, 2015
Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
Buy On
  1. Dec 18, 2015
    90
    The record’s lack of organization and resistance to stasis work against its accessibility. Those willing to mine such a dense work will be rewarded in a visceral sense, but may be left groping in the darkness for a specific, externally-fabricated meaning. Either way, the abstractness and wandering abandon of Mutant define not only the album, but Alejandro Ghersi’s approach to music.
  2. Dec 2, 2015
    90
    It is undoubtedly made to be heard in one sitting. It may not always be a comfortable listen over the course of its hour, it will unflinchingly show you its grotesque beauty, and each listener's reactions and visions produced in the face of such peculiarities will be unique.
  3. Nov 20, 2015
    90
    Fast pacing and fragmentary delivery show how Mutant’s tracks operate as experiments in obsessive dysmorphia, taking flaws and magnifying them to scale drama, affect, and beauty out of digital refuse. Exhilarating moments are found next to tracks that only feature impact tail-ends, panned and swirled around a headspace to suspend spatiality further.
  4. Nov 19, 2015
    90
    Its bustling, condensed epics refuse to present a single, easily digestible vision of the world, yet in so doing they end up revealing this world in all its beautifully chaotic truth.
  5. Nov 18, 2015
    84
    Mutant is an album of contrasts, and Ghersi has an uncanny ability to let extremes interact with each other to create something new.
  6. 83
    Mutant unfurls like a singular body, and its nuanced empathy with the shame and horror and joy of corporeality makes it an enthralling piece to experience.
  7. Dec 22, 2015
    80
    Mutant may be some of his most challenging work yet, but as Arca's music becomes more abstract, the viewpoint behind it comes into focus in ways that embrace strangeness, ugliness, and beauty equally.
  8. The Wire
    Dec 16, 2015
    80
    Almost every track has a fearsome radiance to its high end and even in those parts without drums or squared off structures, the surges of sound recall collective dancefloor ecstasies. [Dec 2015, p.44]
  9. Nov 23, 2015
    80
    Whatever the aural equivalent of a spectacle might be, that's Mutant, which firmly establishes its creator as an auteur.
  10. 80
    As disarmingly brilliant Mutant can be at times, it’s still deliberately obscure.
  11. Nov 19, 2015
    80
    Distressing, transcendental and beautiful, it’s a journey so remarkable it could excuse a hundred false starts.
  12. Nov 19, 2015
    80
    Mutant, even as it threatens to filibuster itself at over an hour long, feels like the album that Xen was meant to grow into, with every lesson that Vulnicura taught integrated at a molecular level.
  13. Nov 18, 2015
    80
    Whereas Xen had the odd, satisfyingly familiar beat pattern, Mutant is even more punk. It dives headlong into an emotional abyss and proceeds with a rhyme or reason that's up to listeners to determine.
  14. 80
    It’s a testament to his cohesive sound and willingness to defy convention that this record, despite a lack of samples or anything really resembling typical electronic music, conveys emotion as well as it does.
  15. 70
    The downside of the now-ness, the resistance against static definition, is lack of resolution. Mutant is hard to listen to, sometimes in a salutary way and sometimes not.
  16. Dec 1, 2015
    70
    Somehow, despite the maelstrom of sound and texture, Mutant never topples in to destruction. But perhaps the fact that it does teeter that much closer to the edge is the reason that it never quite matches its predecessor's more solid appeal.
  17. Nov 18, 2015
    70
    The result of this endless metamorphosis--it's over an hour long--is an album that is eventually rewarding, but only to those who are determined to follow its scattered pathway to the satisfying, aggregate end.
  18. Nov 20, 2015
    64
    The forms are extraordinary and the surfaces dazzling, but it's unclear how to navigate through them. You're impressed but also confused, and you keep an eye out for the exit. Several tracks shine regardless.
  19. Uncut
    Dec 11, 2015
    60
    Shuffle and skip for best results. [Jan 2016, p.71]
  20. Nov 23, 2015
    60
    Perhaps the NSFW art and videos for Vanity and En skew the narrative, but Mutant feels even more sexual than its predecessor.
  21. Nov 20, 2015
    60
    Aside from the brutal norm its twenty, overwhelming tracks follow, Mutant is also capable of digging up gold.
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 85 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 73 out of 85
  2. Negative: 8 out of 85
  1. Nov 23, 2015
    8
    Arca can seriously do no wrong. He is so innovative and on this album, he uses some familiar sounds from his debut album, but manages toArca can seriously do no wrong. He is so innovative and on this album, he uses some familiar sounds from his debut album, but manages to morph them into something new. He is truly a genius and has an incredible talent for creating new soundscapes that our modern world has yet to experience. Full Review »
  2. Jan 19, 2016
    10
    Maybe it's hard listen to entire album the first time, but that stunning atmosphere that Mutant makes by itself makes it so addictive.
    Arca
    Maybe it's hard listen to entire album the first time, but that stunning atmosphere that Mutant makes by itself makes it so addictive.
    Arca never disappoints!!
    Full Review »
  3. Dec 3, 2015
    7
    Those looking for sounds similar to Arca's production on Kanye West's Yeezus or FKA Twigs' Lp1 will be surprised when listening to hisThose looking for sounds similar to Arca's production on Kanye West's Yeezus or FKA Twigs' Lp1 will be surprised when listening to his sophomore album. The word "conventional" is nowhere in this album's vocabulary. Take the song "Mutant", for example. The skittering beats and hard-hitting sub-bass at times make it sound like breathing- as if the song was a story of a creation coming to life. To mutate, in a biological sense, means to alter the genetic sequence of an organism. In regards to Arca's music, this is precisely the case as he twists and contorts contemporary music, effectively ruining its genetic code and consequently forming an entirely new being. I at once had a hard time understanding how one can name a song that has no lyrics. Listening the Mutant is hard at times because several songs feel structureless, like a thrown-together hodgepodge. But other songs, such as "Alive", "Mutant", "Vanity", "Sinner", and **** seem to convey thoughts that cannot be expressed in words. Thus, listening to the tracks and reading the titles is the best way to begin understanding the meaning and inspiration. Creating ideas and provoking thought without words is a feat accomplished by a short list of skilled electronic musicians, a list that Arca can join proudly and, with future releases, climb to the top of. Full Review »