Ys Image
Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 35 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 371 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: Steve Albini, Jim O'Rourke and Van Dyke Parks lend a hand on this five-song full-length from the folk singer-songwriter.

Top Track

Only Skin
And there was a booming above you that night, black airplanes flew over the sea. And they were lowing and shifting like beached whales, shelled... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 35
  2. Negative: 1 out of 35
  1. It may well be the most off-putting album released this year. After playing it, there seems every chance it is the also the most astonishing.
  2. 100
    For the 56 minutes that "Ys" lasts, all the doubts evaporate. Every elaboration has a purpose, every labyrinthine melodic detour feels necessary rather than contrived. Tempting as it is to fixate on the gilded reputations of her associates, this is unequivocally Newsom’s album.
  3. While Ys is ridiculously overwritten, over-performed and self-contained, her fables always sublimate into the hot fog of real emotions just before they calcify.
  4. Mojo
    90
    It is Newsom's voice that provides the stunning balm to bind this strange beauty together. [Dec 2006, p.118]
  5. It’s to her great credit that Newsom (literally) plucks artistic triumph from the jaws of cloying whimsy.
  6. She has issued a treasure. She has floored us again.
  7. It's like being stuck in the seat next to a chatty, batshit backwoods pixie for an 18-hour plane ride.

See all 35 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 38 out of 202
  1. Dec 11, 2010
    10
    Magical. Flawless. One of the best albums I've ever heard, it's like a very well told tale, and Joanna is very creative, and not boring atMagical. Flawless. One of the best albums I've ever heard, it's like a very well told tale, and Joanna is very creative, and not boring at all. Even though no one mentions it, "Cosmia" is beautiful, and, for me, the best track. "Sawdust & Diamonds" is also just as pretty. No single back track in this album. Expand
  2. ChristinaT
    Dec 9, 2006
    10
    I'd just like to point out that most of the reviews on here are mostly either a 9-10 or a 2-0. Joanna is an artist you either get, or I'd just like to point out that most of the reviews on here are mostly either a 9-10 or a 2-0. Joanna is an artist you either get, or you don't. You can't just someone's talent based on how her voice sounds, that's just how she sings. And if you even study her lyrics for one minute, you can see she is an accomplished writer and has a very firm grasp of the english language and is a fantastic lyricist. Her harp playing? I'm a harpist and I'm here to tell you she's amazing. The fact that she tried something new is noted by everyone, in the good and bad reviews, so I think that everyone should look at Ys based on the way every other album is looked at. Are the lyrics good and is the music good? Yes and yes. If you don't like her voice, that's your taste, and is no reason to put the other aspects down. If you honestly can't stomach it, go listen to some regular old regular-voiced singer with a regular old session band. Expand
  3. aldoa
    Nov 14, 2006
    10
    rolling stone is the dumbest publication on earth.
  4. DarneeQ
    Aug 24, 2007
    10
    Unique in many ways, and I'm not just trying to be "arty" or "cultured" here. Joanna builds a theatre of sound with her vox and harp as Unique in many ways, and I'm not just trying to be "arty" or "cultured" here. Joanna builds a theatre of sound with her vox and harp as well as any. All of these complex themes may be too much for many in this day and age; read uncultured America. Anyone with an appreciation and love of the ART of music will appreciate this. To those of you who don't get it, well there are plenty of albums out there for you too. Mariah, Celine, Brittny, Avril, etc. Have fun. Expand
  5. JaredB.
    Nov 29, 2006
    9
    i've never seen so many people angry because someone *likes* something before. this record isn't for everyone, but a surprising i've never seen so many people angry because someone *likes* something before. this record isn't for everyone, but a surprising number of people find a lot to love about this difficult, but ultimately rewarding album. even if you never warm to it, please try not to be as closed-minded as the poster below me. sheesh. Expand
  6. PaulL
    Feb 10, 2007
    6
    If you're expecting the catchiness and charm of the Milk-Eyed Mender, you'll be disappointed. Where her last album was a nice If you're expecting the catchiness and charm of the Milk-Eyed Mender, you'll be disappointed. Where her last album was a nice combination of hooks and quirks, this one's all quirks. It's certainly not annoying, but it isn't a joy to listen to. Expand
  7. AaronS
    Nov 15, 2006
    0
    I don't know whay everyone else is hearing, but this is the single worst release in 2006. Newsom's vocals are beyond bad and the I don't know whay everyone else is hearing, but this is the single worst release in 2006. Newsom's vocals are beyond bad and the album itself is very overproduced. Awful. Expand

See all 202 User Reviews