Austin Chronicle's Scores

For 1,937 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 43% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Music review score: 70
Highest review score: 100 Wincing The Night Away
Lowest review score: 20 Achtung Baby [Super Deluxe]
Score distribution:
1937 music reviews
    • 90 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Especially refreshing in this city, the player lets his modern blues simmer and smoke, avoiding pyrotechnic blister. Somber and guarded, opener "Lost & Lonesome" pins the simple tools behind most of the album – evocative acoustic guitar, barely there percussion, and Nichols' wisely pleading voice.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Although certainly not the capstone to Wennerstrom's extraordinary personal and artistic journey, A Beautiful Life reaches a new pinnacle for the songwriter, and signals a remarkable turning point on a new path forward.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Perfect in vision, voice, harmony – not to mention timing – Treasure of Love delivers quintessential Flatlanders.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    As much Tom Waits as Roy Orbison, both Amigo the Devil and Born Against expertly navigate the twisted path between a metaphorical heart on a sleeve and real live beating one bloodying up his flannel.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    As thoroughly self-possessed as Portrayal of Guilt's celebrated bow resounded in punk and metal pits, follow-up We Are Always Alone now standardizes the locals' splatter into a trademark sound. Success breeds fearlessness, focus, certainty; No. 2 harnesses No. 1's tempest.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Unexpectedly, one of the most beautiful and hopeful albums of the year comes from Black Angels singer Alex Maas. Luca capstones 2020 with a reminder of what's truly important and wondrous in the world.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    For certain, the low-voiced local occupies artistic territory with Leonard, but Gold Record also spins reminiscent of Bob Dylan's summer surprise Rough and Rowdy Ways in its zoomed-out lyrical portraiture and employment of pop culture references.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    My Love Is A Hurricane ransacks David Ramirez to emerge bloody but unbowed.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    All together, a mischievous lyricist captures the new West.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Summation of their best recorded moments, X echoes the pulverizing claustrophobia of Source Tags & Codes (2002) and sheer aggression of bone-crushing 1999 debut Madonna, erecting walls of drill-bit noise and floating ennui codas.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Lifting both blast beats and thrash dynamics from metal, the Belgian indie rock trio galvanizes enough sheer fury to knock the needle off your turntable.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Arising from largely improvised performances that accompanied a cosmic expedition at San Antonio's Scobee Planetarium, The Spiral Arm ranks not as the Austin ambient trio's spaciest effort – that's 2016 debut Original Soundtrack – but as their most beautiful.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A legendary liquor-soaked session with Tom Waits, two discs containing a ragged-but-right contemporary concert, and a booklet that takes an in-depth look at the making of DTAS crackle and pop, but in revisiting its creators' original intent, a formerly sneered at LP becomes essential.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 67 Critic Score
    Sadly, familiar streams – "Matchbox," "That's All Right, Mama," "Big River" – don't yield any gems. Constant studio chatter and fumbled lyrics frustrate rather than charm, and even when duetting, Dylan and Cash's aw-shucks mutual admiration smothers artistic collaboration. Disc three's bonus content with banjo legend Earl Scruggs fares better.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Unsurprisingly, the true treasure for devotees occurs in long-vaulted studio moments.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 67 Critic Score
    The salsa-imbued "Green" celebrates heritage and familial commitment as the LP culminates in a dreamy slow-burn.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Brighter compositions match the lyrical demands of more specified storytelling, most vividly on piano-led "Mr. Lee."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    Still relaxed, LAHS clouds over with less reverb, punchier drums, and – at long last – vocals at the front of the mix.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    Welcome to the desolate wasteland of Destroyer.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    Central to Birth of Violence, the Northern Californian's stunning voice and insular lyrics tie everything into one clear, bewitching vision.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 67 Critic Score
    3
    Clocking in at just half an hour, their third LP streamlines sonically, but the bulldozing remains.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 67 Critic Score
    The dark synth pulse of opener "Roseate," driving mad as Gika trills into an effervescent falsetto, sets a tension that flows throughout
    • 78 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    The Devil You Know: smart, joyous rage for our times.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    An eerie, whimsical sheen coats jaunty guitars, arty baroque keys, and choral intonations, with delicate lyrics skewing surprisingly funny at times as they warp the burdens of addiction and the lovelorn.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    This solo debut makes all the right moves to sail past retro on its way to timeless.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    Fever hinges on bouncing beats and an inspired brand of feminism.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 67 Critic Score
    Armed with a gorgeous warble that sounds like a gothic Chris Isaak, Peck soars over the sparse arrangements, which prove a natural complement to all the reverb, tremolo, and twang.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 89 Critic Score
    Steeped in vivid details of a queer romance, Forevher partners jubilant pop with its ideal mate: physically charged songs of electric devotion.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    Galvanizing at heart, Fender's bow burns with sharp conviction and intimacy.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 78 Critic Score
    The only misstep comes from spoken interludes about WWAY Health, an unnecessary framing device for a smart, textured zigzag of songwriting.