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ROADRUNNER: NEW LIGHT, NEW MACHINE Image
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 79 Ratings

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  • Summary: The sixth full-length studio release for the Los Angeles-based hip-hop collective features guest appearances from A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, Baird, Danny Brown, JPEGMAFIA, SoGone SoFlexy, and Charlie Wilson.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. Apr 15, 2021
    90
    Technical precision and introspective lyrics mark this album as their most rap-centric project thus far, inspiring both concentrated head-nodding and the thrill of the rush as each emcee's verse impeccably weaves from one to another.
  2. Apr 9, 2021
    90
    ‘Roadrunner…’ sees Brockhampton silencing any of those who feared they might have lost their spark. It’s a record that - if it is truly one of their last - sees the lads going out with a bang.
  3. Apr 9, 2021
    88
    From the Four Seasons through to One Direction, never has the pop construct of a “boyband” had as much to say, and as many offbeat ways of saying it, as does Brockhampton on “Roadrunner.”
  4. Apr 12, 2021
    78
    This is a lovable but frustrating record-by-committee, seemingly unsure of what it wants to sound like, the band's talent diluted and occasionally even aimless.
  5. Apr 9, 2021
    75
    Throughout ROADRUNNER…, their psychedelic-saturated groupthink frequently coheres into daring and undeniably moving work, smoothing over the rough spots and small stumbles.
  6. Apr 14, 2021
    74
    The joy of being a collective bleeds into every bar and hook. For a change, it’s a Brockhampton album that isn’t telling you what to think or feel; it just sounds good.
  7. While ‘Old News’ also has a light, airy quality – every note of ‘Roadrunner’ is imbued with a deep melancholy. While it might not provide the same hit as the jubilant likes of early hits ‘Boogie’ and ‘Gold’, Brockhampton are still masters of tapping into a mood, and it’s an immersive trip as a result.

See all 14 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 18
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 18
  3. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. Apr 10, 2021
    10
    This is easily their best work yet in my opinion. This album has their best blend of the hard banger tracks as it does the softer deep cuts.This is easily their best work yet in my opinion. This album has their best blend of the hard banger tracks as it does the softer deep cuts. This album after a few listens is definitely a grower, especially one or two songs in the middle that definitely grew on me after the first listen. This is one that deserves multiple plays because of how deep some cuts here are. Starting with the first track BUZZCUT, this is a great start to the album. Kevin Abstract really shines here with his hardest verse since GUMMY on SAT2. Danny Brown also is a fantastic feature and he really shines over this beat. The outro with Merlyn Wood and Joba is also great with their contrasting voices blending together great. This track really brings back the group feeling many were missing from Iridescence and Ginger. The second track is called CHAIN ON (feat. JPEGMAFIA). This has a nice and simple beat, but with Kevin on the hook, JPEGMAFIA, and Dom going hard really goes well nicely with the beat. Easily one of the better songs in the first half. The third track is called COUNT ON ME and this is the first "softer" song on the album sonically speaking. It features A$AP Rocky and SoGone SoFlexy along with Matt Champion on the verses with Jabari Manwa, Ryan Beatty, and Shawn Mendes on the chorus which is a nice feel-good time. This is definitely one of the more "summery" and more replay-heavy tracks that are always nice to turn on. The fourth track, BANKROLL (feat. A$AP Rocky and A$AP Ferg) is easily one of my personal favorites. This is the track where Merlyn shines the most. He has one of my favorite verses of his on this one. Asap Rocky and Asap Ferg also sound amazing here as well. The fifth track is where the album really starts to get amazing. THE LIGHT has Joba talking about his father's recent suicide and his struggles regarding that. Kevin Abstract also has a verse to close off the song where he raps about his struggles with his sexuality and how his mom feels about it. For most this is a top tier track in their catalog. The sixth track is WINDOWS (feat. SoGone SoFlexy). This is the first track so far that features a verse from all the members of the group and every one of the verses here is amazing. Personal highlights are Jabari on the chorus, Merlyn's verse, bearface's verse, and Joba's verse. This one is the longest song on the album but I think is worth the whole listen. The next two songs are probably the two most controversial ones on the whole album where people either love them or hate them. I personally love both I'LL TAKE YOU ON (feat. Charlie Wilson) and OLD NEWS (feat. Baird) but there are many others who do not like either of these tracks. They are both nice kind of pop-inspired cuts that can be a bit sappy sometimes, but I think are a fine addition to the album that doesn't really help or hurt the experience all that much. The next track WHAT'S THE OCCASION? is another favorite of mine. It has fantastic verses and a great instrumental which features a Beatles-style guitar backing track with maybe even some MCR influence here too. Another great track with a fantastic chorus by Joba yet again, and a somber rock-out outro. WHEN I BALL is the tenth track on the album which starts off with an amazing verse by Dom where he lays out the struggles of African Americans in America and the struggles they face with police and the prison system. This also has a nice verse by Matt talking about his childhood as well with Joba on the bridge and chorus and the outro. Another fantastic track. The eleventh track here might be the best on the entire record. DON'T SHOOT UP THE PARTY is a straight banger that brings back the feelings of the Saturation era group bangers like BOOGIE and SWEET for example. Kevin Abstract opens the track with a verse about his struggles with being a member of the LGBTQ+ community in America and some racial issues as well. Joba also has a verse that references the suicide of his father. One of my favorite tracks here. The second to last track is the very somber DEAR LORD which was written by bearface for Joba and his father asking for God to help his friend get through the tough times. This is an incredible track to me as it is one of the deepest and sad moments in their entire discography. This leads me to my favorite track here THE LIGHT PT. II. It again leads off with Kevin Abstract rapping a verse about his struggles with his mother and police brutality in America. This is my favorite verse of his on the entire record. Then it moves onto Joba for the rest of the song. This verse is easily his best one he has ever done with a somber and heartfelt tribute to his father who he recently lost to suicide. This song is easily the best closer to any of their albums. To wrap this up, I loved this record from front to back. This is so far my favorite album of the 2020's so far and cannot wait to see where they go on their final album later this year. Rating: 10/10 Expand
  2. Apr 10, 2021
    10
    Best release since Saturation 1. Brockhampton has shown such extreme versatility with this album that takes the listener through a wide rangeBest release since Saturation 1. Brockhampton has shown such extreme versatility with this album that takes the listener through a wide range of emotions. Expand
  3. Apr 13, 2021
    10
    absolutely love this project, its what i hoped to get when i first heard the albums announcement. it definitely lived up to my expectations.absolutely love this project, its what i hoped to get when i first heard the albums announcement. it definitely lived up to my expectations. easily my favourite album this year, sadly its their second last album. Expand
  4. Apr 15, 2021
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. As a new BROCKHAMPTON fan (joined after GINGER's release), this is one of their if not the most innovative record they have released. I'm a big fan of the SATURATION trilogy and contrary to other fans, I also loved iridescence. But ROADRUNNER completely trumps all of the other albums simply due to its euphoric first listen and extreme versatility. I do feel a slight disconnect between the band members on RR and the track CHAIN ON could have been a lot more than it is currently. But, the incredible storytelling and sublime production absolutely make up for it.

    Tracks like WHAT'S THE OCCASION?, THE LIGHT, and DON'T SHOOT UP THE PARTY experiment with new styles that I've never heard BROCKHAMPTON attempt before (at least that I know of) and somehow, they managed to get it right the first try. This group never fails to amaze me with their immense talent and phenomenal presence.

    I must also applaud JOBA for his phenomenal performance on this album. To be able to speak about his father's suicide on a record like this takes an immense amount of courage and to be fair, I could never do something like that. To be honest, I was kind of disappointed with the cover at first since I was expecting something futuristic/psychedelic (referring to each of the members' profile pictures), but after listening to THE LIGHT and PT. II I completely understand and love the cover chosen.

    A lot of fans complain that this is more of a JOBA album more than a BROCKHAMPTON album and I agree, JOBA was on more often than any other member but, this just shows how supportive and loving the BH family is, they've given JOBA space and freedom to reflect on his experience in the form of this album. And, it's not like JOBA completely overshadows all of the other members. Every single member has one of those "holy **** **** moments on the album. Dom's verse on WINDOWS, Jabari on OLD NEWS, Merlyn Wood on BANKROLL, bearface on I'LL TAKE YOU ON and Matt Champion bodies every verse he is in where it's on DON'T SHOOT UP THE PARTY or COUNT ON ME. So it's safe to say even though JOBA stole the show, there was still plenty of spotlights for the other members to shine.

    My personal favorite JOBA moment has to be the bridge on THE LIGHT. There is absolutely nothing more euphoric than listening to that for the first time.

    To quote one of the members (Dom) "If we can’t just objectively agree that JOBA’s performance on THE LIGHT isn’t one of the best written and recorded efforts in music, let alone the arts EVER, I really don’t care about your opinion. I don’t". I absolutely agree with Dom here, JOBA delivers an emotional and ecstatic performance on THE LIGHT, which also makes it my favorite track on the record.

    DEAR LORD was one of my weaker tracks at first but, after listening to it more carefully I realized that it is absolutely wonderful, bearface praying to God that He helps his brother (JOBA) in this trying time is beautiful and shows once again how supportive the BH family is to all of their members.
    Expand
  5. Apr 13, 2021
    9
    the best mix of past brockhampton sound with hard hitters and good slow songs that sounds like they finnaly have balenced the styles fromthe best mix of past brockhampton sound with hard hitters and good slow songs that sounds like they finnaly have balenced the styles from their albums into one aswell as new good sounds especially in the light and what's the occasion, joba delivers some Incredible verses and emotional lyrics and storytelling aswell as every member having memorable good performances, there are a few boring songs and a lack of a continuous story or theme but all around best Brockhampton album yet Expand
  6. Apr 9, 2021
    9
    Oh my god. Chills throughout the entirety. This is their strongest album in my opinion.
  7. Apr 10, 2021
    7
    Heavy on the lyrics, I like the production but lacks in delivery, BUZZCUT is the intro which overshadowes the others, making you except someHeavy on the lyrics, I like the production but lacks in delivery, BUZZCUT is the intro which overshadowes the others, making you except some high energy psychedelic vibe, but ending up with some mellow vibe Expand

See all 18 User Reviews