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Generally favorable reviews - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 86 Ratings

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  • Artist(s): Julian Casablancas
  • Summary: The debut release for the rock band led by The Strokes frontman with Jake Bercovici, Alex Carapetis, Jeramy Gritter, Jeff Kite, and Amir Yaghmai was produced by Shawn Everett.
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  • Record Label: Cult Records
  • Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival
  • More Details and Credits »
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Oct 14, 2014
    100
    It might just be one of those rare treasures which keep us reluctantly, unstoppably, coming back again and again.
  2. Sep 23, 2014
    80
    While these "in-between areas" are not always sonically pleasant, you can't accuse them of being dull; they make Tyranny the compelling album that it is.
  3. Uncut
    Nov 11, 2014
    70
    A triumphant, ridiculous mess. [Dec 2014, p.73]
  4. 65
    Tyranny is a fantastically interesting idea, which doesn’t always work as an album, but could make one hell of an installation
  5. 60
    Those willing to take the plunge are likely to find enough here worthy of a future return to explore further and ignore, or more likely respect, its self-indulgent qualities.
  6. Sep 30, 2014
    60
    Intriguing but muddled, Tyranny puts plenty of musical distance between Casablancas and the Strokes, but too often it lacks the clarity to be anything but challenging in the wrong ways.
  7. Q Magazine
    Oct 3, 2014
    40
    For the majority of Tyranny, it's almost impossible to understand what's going on or why. [Nov 2014, p.121]

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 20
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 20
  3. Negative: 3 out of 20
  1. Sep 28, 2014
    10
    You have to take this record for what it is, an experimental attempt to fill the gaps between genres as Julian Casablancas has defined it.You have to take this record for what it is, an experimental attempt to fill the gaps between genres as Julian Casablancas has defined it. It's true that sometimes it feels like there is too much going on but that's the point. If you analyze the lyrics (though job, I know) and listen to the record carefully you'll find a lot of beauty, grotesque beauty perhaps, in it. For certain this is an album that requires us to listen with care if we want to really get it

    I do find myself wishing for some songs not being so noisy and rough, with more clear sound and specially vocals, punk isn't my thing, but I guarantee you that Tyranny has high-quality songwriting on it. You just need to be open minded enough not to panic the first time you listen to it. I would give it an 8 but given the many exaggerated reviews that give it 0s and 1s I'll give it a 10 to compensate a little.
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  2. Sep 29, 2014
    10
    A beautiful, messy, post-modern masterpiece. Every song has a moment that has the ability to surprise, awe, and weaken the knees. I have beenA beautiful, messy, post-modern masterpiece. Every song has a moment that has the ability to surprise, awe, and weaken the knees. I have been brought to tears by "Human Sadness" and "Dare I Care" on multiple listens. This is an album that some people will hate, for sure, and I commend JC + the Voidz all the more for it. This is a bold, daring album, full of raw emotion, shocking beauty, and powerful commentary about modern society. Many of this songs require more than one listen to understand - on the 6th or 7th time through the album now, I can honestly say that there is not a single track that does not have some merit. Bravo, Julian and Co. I can't wait to see in you San Francisco. Expand
  3. Sep 23, 2014
    10
    This is a pure experimental album with many layers in each song. Take it for what it is. Its a refreshing change of pace from what isThis is a pure experimental album with many layers in each song. Take it for what it is. Its a refreshing change of pace from what is 'regular' or normal music. Long live Jules. Expand
  4. May 16, 2017
    9
    This album, upon the first 2/3 listens I thought was absolute garbage. A messy, over-indulgent, contrasting layered and all-round weirdThis album, upon the first 2/3 listens I thought was absolute garbage. A messy, over-indulgent, contrasting layered and all-round weird record. But I decided to give it another listen.. and another.. and then another.. and (you get the picture).

    The final outcome is an amazing piece of art. Listening to this record is the sort of feeling you get from overcoming a really hard maths question, that has brought anger, frustration and reduced concentration levels, before the "YES I GOT IT RIGHT" euphoria. People who love this record will understand what I mean by that analogy.

    This record is great for so many reasons, songs like "dare I care" are unpredictable no matter how much you listen to it, it bridges the gap between Pop and African-punk-psychedelia (or something like that). Which, is no easy task as you would probably gather.

    My personal highlights off this records will have to be the more pacy upbeat and more overtly political songs such as "M.utually A.ssured D.estruction", "Where No Eagles Fly" and of course my personal favourite "Business Dog".

    I understand why many may dislike this record, I completely get that this record will never be (nor was it ever designed to be) a crowd pleaser. Casablancas has used his mainstream popularity, and knowledge that hardcore Strokes fans will always give-his-stuff-a-go, to tap into the breakdown of this very dense, meshed and vocoded masterpiece that is Tyranny.

    If you want entertainment and clarity this is not for you, If you're looking for invention and an artistic portrayal of modern politics, then this most certainly is.
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  5. Oct 4, 2014
    9
    It's understandable that critics will pan the album -- Strokes are a popular target, Casablancas is an egomaniac, the lyrics are trash.It's understandable that critics will pan the album -- Strokes are a popular target, Casablancas is an egomaniac, the lyrics are trash. However, there are just too many good melodic ideas here, too many clever changes, too many tones, too much work, for this to get thrown in the garbage. The criticisms being played are bankrupt: It's dissonant? No kidding, is that an absolute negative? There's too much going on? Are you a critic or not? It's not groundbreaking? It's derivative of other artists? I hear all the things I liked about the movements Casablancas is invoking, and these criticisms run contrary to the criticism that there's 'too much going on'. That's no crime -- that's how music works. This might be the best thing Casablancas has ever made. I hope he makes more. Expand
  6. Jul 18, 2015
    9
    This album took a long time to make sense. It seemed like a mess the first couple of times through. However, over several months I kept goingThis album took a long time to make sense. It seemed like a mess the first couple of times through. However, over several months I kept going back to individual tracks, and have now found a really deep album. Flip to Johan Von Bronx and Nintendo Blood; I would argue the singles aren't the best tracks on the album, albeit Human Sadness is extremely compelling. Expand
  7. Sep 28, 2014
    0
    RubbishRubbish basically.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. Expand

See all 20 User Reviews