- Manipulator

Ty Segall - Manipulator
CRITIC SCORE
81
Based on 23 reviews
2014 Rank: #55 / 827
USER SCORE
80
Based on
136 ratings

WHAT DO YOU THINK?
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CRITIC REVIEWS

91
Consequence of Sound

It’s all at once contemporary enough to thrive in a market that demands constant innovation, yet nostalgic enough to shepherd the spirit of a bygone era on which the genre is founded.

90
No Ripcord

Following last year’s acoustic-based Sleeper, Segall’s newest release is an ambitious 17 tracks, all of which combine 60s pop sensibilities with contemporary psych flavors and dissonant embellishments.  

90
Wondering Sound
Segall’s voluble output once made him seem overly eager to please, but patience has yielded what listeners desired most: his best album to date.
83
Paste

With Manipulator, Ty takes a chance and tidies up the raucous bedlam. He didn’t lose his edge; he just squired a little antiseptic along the jagged ridges.

83
A.V. Club

What’s strikingly new is the way Segall has punched up and sharpened his quirks and quizzicality. This is Segall in HD, and all the nuances make for a more vivid, yet at times more plastic, listening experience. 

80
DIY

While ‘Manipulator’ lacks the lo-fi charm of his early solo material, Segall’s grown immensely as a songwriter since 2008, with a much wider range and skill while still being able to turn in a pure garage rock belter when he wants to. 

80
AllMusic

Manipulator is a reminder that Ty Segall knows his rock & roll, but he knows a lot more than just that, and this '70s-inspired madness results in one of Segall's best and most pleasurable efforts to date.

80
NME

‘Manipulator’ may boast fewer standout moments than previous albums, but it’s a refreshingly clear, confident and cohesive set of songs. 

80
Under The Radar

The album feels uniquely empowering. It's like the mystery drug convincing kids they can fly in an afterschool special. It demands full volume.

80
Exclaim!

The product of a 14-month writing process, Manipulator finds Segall exploring the space and capacity of his own sounds and finally testing the intersections of his rock, folk, psych and garage rock influences. 

80
Drowned in Sound
Without hesitation it is - although Segall die-hards may debate this - his finest album to date; certainly his most complete.
80
Slant Magazine

All these experiments seem to have been building toward Manipulator, a major effort which distills that scattershot unpredictability within a new, more complex approach to recording, one that utilizes his technical dexterity while still paying service to his traditionally unruly approach.

80
NOW Magazine

Manipulator has much less punk than his early work - a trajectory you could see developing for a while. Instead, he's found more common ground with classic glam rock and psychedelic pop, delivered with his trademark bratty edge.

78
Pitchfork

In sharp contrast to his previous album-to-album stylistic shifts, the songs of Manipulator represent a perfect melting-pot synthesis of Segall’s many sonic signatures, as if each component—from the British Invasion-inspired melodies to the glam-rock affectations to the berserker guitar solos—was carefully measured out in beakers and test tubes before being mixed together

78
Sputnikmusic

The American singer-songwriter's seventh solo effort not only compares very favorably to his regular no-holds-barred output, but also manages to feel like the other side of the same coin - which is saying something.

75
The Line of Best Fit

What makes Manipulator one of Segall’s strongest releases to date is less to do with the energy he brings to proceedings, though, and more about just how evident his keenness to experiment is, from start to finish.

75
The 405

It's pleasing to discover that, even when taking his time, Ty Segall is still able to deliver the magic of spontaneity and urgency that was scorched across his previous albums.

75
Pretty Much Amazing

He’s not hiding behind fuzz and distortion, rather allowing his garage rock proclivities to stand alongside his 60s & 70s psychedelic rock influences. And damn if they don’t stand tall and proud.

70
American Songwriter

With 17 tracks stretching over 57 minutes, perhaps some judicious editing could have trimmed the excess, but this remains a major step forward for Segall and a logical extension of a direction he was already headed in.

70
PopMatters

Manipulator is another fine record for Ty Segall, and another in an increasing list of new accomplishments

60
Rolling Stone

Does Segall's songwriting break new ground? Not really – but Manipulator is rarely boring even so, and always exceedingly likable.

Aug 28, 2014
zeldox
35
Do not understand this enthusiasm. The album like hound reds others. Nothing special.
Aug 27, 2014
100
Not at all like Goodbye Bread (his best solo album in my opinion) but almost as equally as awesome.
Aug 21, 2014
99
Simply, its his most accomplished album and his best.
Jan 28, 2016
SiberianBreaks
61
With Manipulator, Ty fully embraces the safe side to his music and painfully extends it to an astonishing 17 songs. Sometimes the derivative nature of these tracks really do hit the right spot with their intoxicating hooks and in-your-face soloing, but it still goes unmatched with the loads and loads of pure filler.

Favourite tracks: The Singer, Feel, The Feels
Oct 8, 2014
raymon
81
I have to admit that the only weakness of this album is that perhaps its too long. Besides that Ty Segall sounds as polished as ever. He brings you a diverse range of sounds in this album. This is one of the better albums Ty Segall has made.
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END OF YEAR LISTS
# 12 - American Songwriter
# 24 - Consequence of Sound
# 7 - Entertainment Weekly
# 12 - MAGNET
# 13 - MOJO
# 47 - No Ripcord
# 14 - Paste
# 27 - Pazz & Jop
# 40 - Pitchfork
# 23 - PopMatters
# 27 - Pretty Much Amazing
# 39 - Q Magazine
# 19 - Rough Trade
# 31 - Stereogum
# 13 - Uncut
# 56 - Under the Radar
Track List
  1. Manipulator
  2. Tall Man, Skinny Lady
  3. The Singer
  4. It's Over
  5. Feel
  6. The Faker
  7. The Clock
  8. Green Belly
  9. Connection Man
  10. Mister Main
  11. The Hand
  12. Susie Thumb
  13. Don't You Want To Know? (Sue)
  14. The Crawler
  15. Who's Producing You?
  16. The Feels
  17. Stick Around


Added on: June 9, 2014