Noonday Dream

Ben Howard - Noonday Dream
Critic Score
Based on 9 reviews
2018 Ratings: #289 / 765
User Score
Based on 149 ratings
2018 Ratings: #258
June 1, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Island / Label
Suggest a Genre
Abuse of this feature may prevent future contributions from your account.
Sign In to rate and review


The Independent

On Noonday Dream, he expands the Cornish landscape that has impacted his previous work and brings in sounds and instruments that spark the imagination for places further afield, in the most exquisite way.

It may take more time to appreciate, but it’s a masterclass of songwriting that will likely dictate the future direction of his music.

His third album is an engrossing, deeply atmospheric trip, helmed by seven-minute monster ‘A Boat To An Island On The Wall’, that serves as a repositioning as well as a new highlight.


Noonday Dream can feel ephemeral at times, but never is it unpleasant, even when it's fishing for emotional truth in unstable waters. Introspection rarely feels this inclusive.

The 405

There are no catchy hooks and it is far from the hit singles that dwelled on Every Kingdom, yet Howard’s latest still manages to be as memorable. Complex, surreal and divine. Noonday Dream is Ben Howard's best work to date.


Howard returns to the spotlight with his most personal album yet - putting his flaws and his own demons on show.

The Line of Best Fit

The allure of Noonday Dream comes in its willingness to swell and expand, before Howard sits up and starts kicking, slowly but precisely, to steer the track in a new direction.


Monotonous and self-interested, it’s a disappointing listen from one of Britain’s most interesting song-writers.


UK singer-songwriter Ben Howard takes a turn for the ambient and spacey on the evocative but somewhat formless Noonday Dream.

The man is surely channeling 'World of Echo' Arthur Russell through the vocal chords of Jose Gonzalez - thankfully he's doing a successful job of it!

A grower (as if you needed this spelling out) and wonderfully expansive, with an addictive ebb and flow - for an album you'd need to file under 'experimental detour' it all feels so natural.

A 2018 heavyweight.
Ben Howard's newest album is a surprising transition from a worldly singer/songwriter into an artist built for the music community. Considering where his first album landed in terms of an audience, it's hard to believe where his music ended up heading since 2011. Had I guessed the trajectory of his career beyond the campy commercial indie folk boom of the early 2010's, the last place I would've expected Ben to go would be vast, sparse, minimalist ambient singer/songwriter territory.

In 2001, ... read more
Very atmospheric. Don't expect to throw this on in the background and enjoy it as much. Give it a proper listen.
It is all about atmosphere on the new Ben Howard record. And it delivers a unmistakable punch in the gut.
It's a 100, fuck it
Purchasing Noonday Dream from Amazon helps support Album of the Year. Or consider a donation?
Contributions By
thisisabtlgrnd, patton, PaulyZ
Become a Donor
Donor badge, no ads + more benefits.

Year End Lists

#11/The Independent
/Radio X

Track List

  1. Nica Libres At Dusk
  2. Towing the Line
  3. A Boat To an Island On the Wall
  4. What the Moon Does
  5. Someone In the Doorway
  6. All Down the Mines (Interlude)
  7. The Defeat
  8. A Boat To an Island, Pt. 2 / Agatha's Song
  9. There's Your Man
  10. Murmurations
Sign in to comment
No one has said anything yet.

Added on: April 11, 2018