Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
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  1. Sep 23, 2011
    Heavy, lyrically well-tread and packing a mean proto-motorik groove, from start to finish it has an automotive heartbeat with both eyes on the horizon. It is the sound of Wooden Shjips finally bringing it on home.
  2. Sep 13, 2011
    Take out the organ, slow down the drums and you might confuse a few songs with Bay Area band Sleep's legendary Dopesmoker album. But it's the things that prevent easy comparison that make Wooden Shjips the kickass band they are.
  3. 80
    West ties in all of the band's strengths for an excellent outlook on what the destiny towards west might feel like and with it, an album of stellar psychedelic rock.
  4. Sep 14, 2011
    With West, WS plays post-history psychedelia; it is as necessary -- and freaky -- as anything from the eras that influenced it.
  5. Mojo
    Aug 26, 2011
    Third album proper for San Fran psych quartet. [Sept. 2011, p. 98]
  6. Aug 15, 2011
    They're one of only a tiny handful of bands currently using retrospective influences from the past to create something relevant and unique for the present and beyond.
  7. Aug 12, 2011
    It's the unrelenting power of the two-chord drones, though, that is the real draw here, bass and drums throbbing hard enough to add a real heartbeat to songs that might otherwise seem insubstantial enough to melt away. It's enervating, sunbaked and, for all that, rather thrilling.
  8. Aug 12, 2011
    Unexpectedly, these star-sailors are tripping the light, fantastically.
  9. Aug 12, 2011
    Although just seven songs long, the third album from San Francisco psychedelic rockers Wooden Shjips is a remarkably dense, intense affair.
  10. Sep 20, 2011
    The greasy, hopped-up grooves of "Lazy Bones" and "Looking Out" aren't dramatic departures from West's overall drone-heavy aesthetic. But they do a lot to separate Wooden Shjips from similar bands, like the Black Angels and Dead Meadow.
  11. Aug 25, 2011
    Even with its increased focus on classic-rock virtues, the album isn't really a collection of riffs and wails and choruses; it's more a muscular sort of vibe-out-- badass ambient music, if you will.
  12. Magnet
    Nov 11, 2011
    If the stoner rock of the Atomic Bitchwax and Nebula crashed, with care and caution, into Swervedriver and the Doors, you'd have West. [#81, p. 60]
  13. Sep 23, 2011
    With West, Wooden Shjips is just breaking in its new soles--and hitting its stride.
  14. Sep 14, 2011
    If you're fording a desert highway at dawn, these songs will get you across. They're consuming and expansive, steady and constant.
  15. Sep 13, 2011
    Besides embracing improved recording and production, the album stands out in their catalog for containing a strong roster of outstanding songs, not a 98-pound weakling in the bunch.
  16. Sep 12, 2011
    All told, West might repel listeners with short attention spans, but with a bit of patience, its coherence pummels any monotony.
  17. Sep 12, 2011
    Wooden Shjips shoot straight into that barely circulating heart of rhythm and blues and reopen a vein of noise that it is difficult not to pump along with.
  18. Sep 7, 2011
    At times it can become something of an amorphous blob, with songs blending into one another, but the highlights of Home and Flight ensure that there's something tangible to hang on to.
  19. Aug 23, 2011
    The first Shjips album to be recorded in a proper studio, with an engineer, West is Wooden Shjips' fullest exploration of these tensions to date, and sees the band stepping up their game in every aspect.
  20. The Wire
    Aug 17, 2011
    There's no point chasing diminishing returns on a four-track, and the buffed-up West is a kick worth revisiting. [Aug 2011, p.63]
  21. 70
    As long as he keeps on being this magnificent, Mr Ripley can be as avaricious as he damn well pleases.

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