AOTY 2018
Florence + The Machine - High as Hope
Critic Score
Based on 29 reviews
2018 Ratings: #331 / 705
User Score
Based on 389 ratings
2018 Ratings: #152
June 29, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Virgin EMI / Label
Art Pop / Genres
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Your Review


The Telegraph

Welch's singing throughout is extraordinary, shifting gears effortlessly from melancholic softness to high-powered exultation, even ululation. Every gasp, growl and fluttery trill seems perfectly placed.


The easiest and most likely path to continued success for Welch and company would have been to attempt to re-create the spellbinding magic of Ceremonials or the anthemic qualities of Lungs. High as Hope is neither, and that makes it hands down the most forward-thinking album of Florence and the Machine’s career.

Drowned in Sound
It’s raw, human, stripped of all excess and laid bare – and it’s quite possibly the most beautiful thing the band has ever released. Near perfection.

A new level of vulnerability from Florence Welch and deft, atmospheric production from Emile Haynie (Lana Del Rey) makes High As Hope another album of cathedral-filling, mountain-moving sound, with Welch’s vocals the main source of power.


Welch is writing reflectively but with a firm rooting in the present; singing with clarity about life's biggest questions as she and her fans continue to figure it out side-by-side, in both the loud and quiet moments.

The Line of Best Fit

Her ship long since wrecked, High As Hope is the lifesaving raft build from its shattered driftwood.


‘High as Hope’ is an album that takes solace in those closest to her, works to right previous wrongs, and sees her come out the other side a whole lot stronger.

The Independent

What she's come to realise, finally, on new Florence & The Machine album High As Hope, is that her voice is just as, if not more powerful when she holds back.

Stripped back and unapologetic, Florence Welch’s fourth record as Florence + the Machine carries a sense of nakedness never seen before - it’s self-aware, remorseless, and raw.

High as Hope dials down Florence and the Machine's trademark theatrics to forge a vulnerable and visceral musical achievement.

Northern Transmissions
On her latest album however Welch decides to ditch much of her mysterious lyricism for honest lyrics and often more stripped-down arrangements that build up. Though this sometimes makes for a less interesting record, Welch’s enthusiasm carries the music.

There are moments where Welch wears her influences rather too close on her sleeve ... but overall, High As Hope is certainly her most impressive album since Ceremonials.

A.V. Club

Musically, High As Hope isn’t too far off from the operatic orchestration of her earlier work, which is the most frustrating thing about it.

Under The Radar

This is a deep well of an album that demands repeated listens—the subtleties and intricacies revealing themselves satisfyingly and sometimes inspiringly as time goes on.

Rolling Stone
Her confidences may be performative, but they’re palpable.

Straightforward and relatably human, High as Hope may not be the rousing version of Welch from previous albums, but as a document of her personal growth, it's an endearing and heartfelt study of truth and self-reflection.

FLOOD Magazine

High as Hope ... may be the best yet for a simple reason: More than ever, Welch trusts her magnetic personality and her unerring gift for skyscraping pop hooks to do the emotional lifting.

The 405

It finds beauty in complex subtly allowing Florence’s vocals and by extension her personality to shine through more than it has before.

No Ripcord

They never commit fully, but there is enough of a change (guitars are almost entirely absent, for a start) that High As Hope does feel like a new step.

The Needle Drop

Florence + The Machine exercise a bit more restraint than usual on High as Hope.

Spectrum Culture

High as Hope is undoubtedly the saddest record to come out of the Machine camp, and Welch owns it with that flamethrower emotional power.

Consequence of Sound

High as Hope is a marvel when Welch pushes past the boundaries both within herself and in the familiar structure of songs, but falters when stagnating inside those constraints.

The Guardian

Florence Welch’s fourth album is most powerful when focused on the small, telling details of encroaching adulthood.


Stripped to the bare bones of her soul and the sentiment, her truth shines – and there’s a beauty in that. The only thing holding it back is a lack of risk, but there’s still so much comfort in the familiar.

Slant Magazine

These transcendent moments, which explore the evolution of Welch's personal mythos, are too few and far between.

Crack Magazine

For the most part ... High as Hope is endearingly human.

The Observer

Welch could never be accused of being an impersonal artist, but a good spell of High As Hope is not only personal but direct.

Pretty Much Amazing

Ultimately, there would be more to say if High as Hope, and the rest of the band’s discography, didn’t already lay it out for you.

How small, how beige, how disappointing.
This is the first real evolution in Florence and the Machine sound. I was afraid this album would sound like a parody of Lungs, but it's totally different. It's delicate and raw, honest and strong. This time she is really singing about real stuff.
This might be an unpopular opinion, but I do believe this album and "How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful" are Florence's finest works: not only the production is cohesive, well thought of and beautifully exectuted, but are the moments where Florence is the most honest with her audience. This album in particular is as deep as we ever seen her.
Overrated to say, but all of their albums deserve a better score and recognition.

Best songs: "June", "South London ... read more
No doubt in my mind that Hunger is going to be my anthem song for the summer.

Florences music is absolutely timeless and this album just furthers her reputation as one of the greatest female soloists of the last decade ❤.

Favorites:Hunger, Grace, Sky Full Of Song
‘High As Hope’ has slow tracks and songs that will not stop at your place. But Florence & The Machine is struggling a little with slow singles when doing so. When the album is left behind musically, Welch's voice gives an incredible enthusiasm for music. On the other hand, when singing with group become great. At this point, not the vocalist Welch, you understand how successful the group members are doing indie pop music. Conclusion the album contains a lot of chaos but it keeps ... read more
Florence has finally found a new sound for herself. Her amazing vocals still shine through these tracks making "High As Hope" her best record yet!

Fav Tracks: Sky Full Of Song, Hunger, Grace, Big God, The End Of Love, South London Forever

Least Fav Track: 100 Years

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Track List

  1. June
  2. Hunger
  3. South London Forever
  4. Big God
  5. Sky Full of Song
  6. Grace
  7. Patricia
  8. 100 Years
  9. The End of Love
  10. No Choir
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Added on: May 3, 2018