AOTY 2017
Stranger to Stranger
Paul Simon - Stranger to Stranger
Critic Score
Based on 17 reviews
2016 Ratings: #94 / 721
User Score
Based on 75 ratings
2016 Ratings: #204
Your Review

CRITIC REVIEWS

100
The Guardian
His tenacious pursuit of new sounds ... make this album as rewarding as anything he’s done.
91
Pretty Much Amazing
Simon’s bemused yet quietly furious slyness is an exemplar to us all.
91
Entertainment Weekly

Stranger to Stranger is ... Simon’s most interconnected work, a self-contained world unto itself full of backing tracks that wind up in multiple songs and recurring characters (“the Street Angel”) who pop up in unexpected places.

90
Sputnikmusic

Stranger to Stranger is a title aptly reflected in the music; this is a record of Paul Simon extending his reach, engaging others, and putting the results on paper as well as on an album that just happens to be his most accomplished piece since Graceland.

89
Paste

Without a doubt,Stranger to Stranger is a testament to an artist who refuses to be ordinary and pigeonholed. With this LP, Paul Simon has created his best work in many years.

80
American Songwriter

Carrying over the momentum from his last excellent release, 2011’s So Beautiful Or So What, this disc features Simon at his most restless, in terms of both his questioning lyrics and his search for the right sound, and that restlessness pays off for the listener in endlessly fascinating ways.

80
The 405
For a 74-year-old musical treasure with a host of number one songs and albums and a stronghold within the modern cultural consciousness, this is a fantastic album. In fact - scratch that first part. This is simply a fantastic album.
80
AllMusic

Where the specter of 9/11 hung heavily over Surprise, Simon seems at peace on Stranger to Stranger, acknowledging the twilight yet not running toward it because there's so much to experience in the moment. He's choosing to push forward, not look back, and the results are invigorating.

80
PopMatters
Nobody can do what he does. In fact it’s hard to even imagine anyone attempting to try.
80
Rolling Stone
It's as inviting, immaculately produced, jokey and unsettled a record as any he has ever made.
80
The Line of Best Fit
It’s easy to overlook his densely-nuanced, virtuosic arrangements when so much of this album is just the fattest organic beats you’ve ever heard in your life.
75
Consequence of Sound

Stranger To Stranger is poof positive that Simon isn’t simply still here, but he’s kicking with gusto. In a year where good news has been fleeting for classic rock fans, Simon’s latest is worth grabbing onto with both hands.

72
Pitchfork

Stranger to Stranger is arguably the best album of Paul Simon's uneven post-Graceland solo career. His reliably melodic songwriting is buoyed by his most adventurous arrangements in years.

70
Clash
Although uncompromising in it’s vision and delivery, ‘Stranger To Stranger’ ultimately, serves as another fine testament to Simon’s craft and ingenuity as a songwriter.
70
Drowned in Sound
Simon gets total credit for staying interesting and pushing stylistic boundaries at an age where many of his colleagues have fallen into different versions of complacence.
60
Spin
It’s more of a mixed bag, as per the ice-floe pace of his discography.
Jun 7, 2016
JustinSlick
83
Oh lord, that upright bass is single-handedly making me love this album.
Jun 5, 2016
EMR
64
The great Paul Simon is back with a pretty interesting turn of direction is an advanced stage of his career. The legendary singer/songwriter seems quite concerned with making something different from what he's done before, seeking some kind of new approach to his usual voice/guitar songwriting. Stranger to Stranger is (no pun intended) a strange record on the surface, with its many electronic influences and unorthodox song structures that lurk around every corner. His voice is still very sweet ... read more
Jun 3, 2016
pstaggs
75
This is a late-career triumph for Paul Simon. While by no means a perfect album, it harkens back to the best of his solo work. Every song, with the exception of the meandering title track, is quite enjoyable. The album opens with a strong one-two punch. Opener “Werewolf” is an infectious and deliriously wonky reflection on life and death through metaphor, and the deceivingly upbeat “Wristband” critiques the open secret that is class division in our modern world. The rest ... read more
Jun 3, 2016
Z.Younk
77
While his last effort, So Beautiful or So What, felt original, fresh, & unified; Stranger to Stranger feels like an encore to his discography & a pandering to fans. Certain songs are excellent, but none feel cohesive. Regardless, Simon continues to stay upstream of current musical trends and sound modern.
Track List
  1. The Werewolf
  2. Wristband
  3. The Clock
  4. Street Angel
  5. Stranger to Stranger
  6. In a Parade
  7. Proof of Love
  8. In the Garden of Edie
  9. The Riverbank
  10. Cool Papa Bell
  11. Insomniac’s Lullab
Contributions By
patton, thisisabtlgrnd, royalflush


Added on: April 7, 2016