Stray Image
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

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  • Summary: The fourth full-length release for the Brooklyn-based post-punk trio was produced by Drew Vandenberg.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. 80
    This record is a super early contender for album of the year for me though. It’s loud, dark, and thundering. Bambara suck you into their world for just under an hour, and as unpleasant as it can be. It’s not one you find yourself ready to leave.
  2. Feb 13, 2020
    80
    The production gives everything a hazy, ethereal glow, but it makes all of the blazing guitar riffs and pounding drums resonate, rather than washing them out. Easily the band's most accomplished album to date.
  3. Feb 13, 2020
    80
    Engrossing, dark and irresistible, ‘Stray’ is a grandiose effort from an adventurous group, who just keep getting better all the time. Bambara remain a genuine force.
  4. Q Magazine
    Feb 13, 2020
    80
    Each of Stray's tracks bring with it a sense of foreboding, from the eerie short-story-style lyrics to the reveryb-y guitars, which land between Echo & The Bunnymen and Ennio Morricone. [Apr 2020, p.105]
  5. Feb 26, 2020
    76
    Bateh’s sequencing is masterful, but take some of these songs out of the album’s broader context and many lose their steam. It’s not particularly kind to the casual listener either—this is an album for those fully committed to being a fly on the wall of this jet-black joyride.
  6. Mar 30, 2020
    75
    Stray smartly builds on the style and intensity of 2018’s underrated Shadow on Everything by adding nuance and new ideas.
  7. Feb 13, 2020
    60
    M uch of ‘Stray’ could do with heeding its own advice; instead Bambara stay firmly on a strong but fairly predictable path.

See all 10 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Feb 29, 2020
    9
    This will be one of the best rock albums of the year. See them live they are amazing!
  2. Nov 22, 2020
    6
    I am not familiar with Bambara, but I dig their visceral, straight to the point southern gothic on this album. The songs are surprisinglyI am not familiar with Bambara, but I dig their visceral, straight to the point southern gothic on this album. The songs are surprisingly groovy for a nosey post-punk album, with the simple but pumping bass lines being the main driving force and the guitars adding nuance and atmosphere. The vocals fit the raw, energetic tracks well, but tend to sound a bit too flat and monotonous in the long run. I appreciate that they tried to spice things up with some female backing vocals, but it just wasn’t enough. It’s a pity, because a more versatile voice and memorable vocal lines are the only things that prevent Bambara from becoming the quintessential late-night Bang Bang Bar band. Expand