At Weddings

Tomberlin - At Weddings
Critic Score
Based on 14 reviews
2018 Ratings: #111 / 735
User Score
Based on 78 ratings
2018 Ratings: #310
August 10, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Saddle Creek / Label
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CRITIC REVIEWS

95
The Line of Best Fit

On her resoundingly beautiful debut At Weddings, Tomberlin charts an adolescence and young adulthood spent casting off the confinements of youth.

90
God Is in the TV

At Weddings is more than an arrestingly beautiful collection of songs, it is a personal and humbling account of a young woman finding her way through the disentangling, creative process of becoming someone other.

86
Sputnikmusic

It’s an album utterly relatable because love, and heartbreak, are universal. It’s also something so amazingly personal that no one could precisely duplicate it, because every experience is specific to Tomberlin’s journey. That’s At Weddings: passion, devastation, depression , and strength rolled into one. It’s tenacious, and it’s beautiful.

85
Paste

At Weddings is filled with such a powerful, saintly aura that even the most ugly subject matters can spur flawless, beautiful results.

80
The Skinny

At Weddings shows Tomberlin tapping into a tentative inner strength, creating a soothing record that ends up resisting its self-doubts and reaches out its hand.

80
Exclaim!

Existing within a haunting, hymnal veil, Sarah Beth Tomberlin's debut At Weddings is a loosely bound, but tender examination of a search for her own identity.

80
The Observer

There are traces of White Chalk-era PJ Harvey, Low and Sufjan Stevens here and there, but At Weddings introduces a new and singular talent.

80
The 405

For an album touching on such emotionally complex themes, At Weddings thrives on simplicity.

80
Uncut

At Weddings is hermetic in the manner of Bon Iver’s For Emma, Forever Ago and equally measured, sincere and vulnerable.

75
Pitchfork
On the whole, the simplicity of Tomberlin’s writing feels like a kindness to the listener—these songs don’t demand rigorous attention, or catch you off guard. Life is taxing enough as it is, they seem to say.
70
Loud and Quiet
As Tomberlin fights the fondness of nostalgia, treating the album with the patience it requires might leave you realising just what an impressive introduction it is.
70
Northern Transmissions
Though her latest album may not be that much of a step forward for the genre, there’s something intriguing about Sarah Beth Tomberlin’s way with patient writing. While it’s easy to get caught up in the drawn-out moments of the album, listening back unveils a depth of writing (along with subtle arrangements by Owen Pallett) that’s really something.
70
Under The Radar

On her haunting and epiphanic debut, At Weddings, Sarah Beth Tomberlin grapples with the existential dread of not knowing where validation may come from as she questions her relationship with God.

thomasuic
83
Tomberlin to be added to the Julie Byrne, Julien Baker and Angel Olsen group of artists. The gloomy record "at weddings" is vocally insane and instrumentally surprisingly it is very versatile although only a few instruments are used. This album is moody as it creates a unique environment for us as listeners.
77
There’s no shortage of promising young acoustic-based singer-songwriters, but on both the singing and songwriting front, Sarah Beth Tomberlin stands out. Her voice is powerful and arresting, but nuanced enough to fit neatly into her stripped-down, restrained style. Like fellow southern singer-songwriters Julien Baker and Mackenzie Scott (Torres), Tomberlin explores her struggles with her faith on “At Weddings,” but unlike those artists, Tomberlin's faith is gone, presumably ... read more
MasterCrackfox
63
A mildly standard affair in regards to female-backed folk music; although there are no outright issues with the musical accompaniment or the vocalization, there just doesn't seem to be a unique feeling to this album. Still highly listenable with plenty to enjoy, it simply isn't one of the best of the year.

Favorite track: I'm Not Scared
musicmagpie55
76
Beautiful music. I do think this album constructs sentimentality similar to Grouper. There are these layers of melody that are repetitive, but somehow the only grow with emotional weight with each repeated phrase. I think on songs like 'Self-Help' and 'Any Other Way,' she manages to create some pretty sublime folk songs through these rhythmic patterns. I would love to see more experimentation in her sound!

Lyrically, this album is pretty brutal. The highlight of the album for me is, 'I'm Not ... read more
75
Debut album of Julie Byrne's little sister.
(I initially had the urge to dismiss Tomberlin as just another female singer-songwriter, but her music keeps acquiring a rare, undisguised power.)
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END OF YEAR LISTS

#20/Stereogum
#24/The Line of Best Fit
#35/Earbuddy
#46/The Skinny
#49/The 405

Track List

  1. Any Other Way
  2. Untitled 1
  3. Tornado
  4. You Are Here
  5. A Video Game
  6. I'm Not Scared
  7. Seventeen
  8. Self-Help
  9. Untitled 2
  10. February
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Added on: June 5, 2018