Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. [Bell Orchestre] varies its cunningly sequenced, gratifyingly brief instrumental tracks with such old-fashioned amenities as textured melodies, pleasing dynamic shifts, and passages that, if they don't actually r-o-c-k, at least bound down the road in an excited manner.
  2. Magnet
    Capacious, intimate and brimming with both whimsy and tension, Recording A Tape is what classical music might sound like from some advanced alien civilization. [#70, p.86]
  3. Under The Radar
    Recording's musical vignettes display equal parts languor and incitement. [#11, p.105]
  4. While it drifts away from the listener somewhat during its middle section, Recording a Tape the Colour of the Light is, for the most part, a captivating listen.
  5. Whether the album achieves its titular synesthesia is debatable, but Bell Orchestre tap into a wide, mesmerizing range of the spectrum.
  6. Bell Orchestre don't always make good on their ambitions, but the results are often excellent, despite (and usually because of) their sloppiness.
  7. A timely twinkle of apple crisp bells, hearth-warming handclaps and belly-rubbing brass.
  8. The first third or so of Recording A Tape lags a bit, mostly because Bell Orchestre seems reluctant to show all its cards right out of the jewel case. However, once you reach "THROW IT ON A FIRE," the horns and percussion begin to drive, and the album grows progressively stronger.
  9. Mojo
    There's a beguiling musicality at play that puts pleasing melody at the centre of even the most outre detour. [Dec 2005, p.102]
  10. A debut that sounds a lot like New York urbanites the Rachel's and the Clogs, but a little more dangerous.
  11. Urb
    There's just enough rock spirit here to keep Recording A Tape... too weird for Barnes and Noble background music. [Dec 2005, p.104]
  12. Less sparse than open, the songs resist the build-and-release structure that most other Montreal acts utilize, and they also refuse to ride a groove or play with distracting orchestration.
  13. Their record runs through a range of instrumentalist archetypes and quietly surprising turns-for-the-worse, from electrified screech to tape-op minimalism, through pastoralism and soundscapery, to numbers where they knock out all manner of feigned sturm und drang.
  14. At its best, Recording a Tape still sounds like little more than the product of a few precocious marching-band dropouts, an empty warehouse, and good intentions.
  15. Spin
    Flavorless chamber pop. [Jan 2006, p.91]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 8 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
  1. davem
    Oct 6, 2006
    Solid album, see them live, it's fantastic.
  2. kurtt
    Mar 5, 2006
    I personally find it quite refreshing and I love how the album has a whispy unity that works as a whole. It really has grown on me!!!
  3. coolerstillr.muckfluck
    Feb 6, 2006
    yeah...not quite. no.