MGMT - Congratulations
Critic Score
Based on 35 reviews
2010 Ratings: #569 / 918
Year End Rank: #29
User Score
2010 Ratings: #44
Liked by 180 people
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Brooklyn duo deliver shock psychedelic masterpiece.
A.V. Club
It offers one sonic reward after another, and the band remains as inviting as ever.

From the opening moments of the sublime “It’s Working” all the way to the titular closer, Congratulations is an incredible follow-up from a band that is still maturing into some unknown entity.


The new nine-song album blends psychedelia with elements of post-punk, surf rock and even folk.

This is a wilful and lovably eccentric second album from a band who've had a sniff of being pop stars and decided they'd much rather be weird and esoteric, thanks all the same.
Q Magazine
The album evokes not claustrophobia but space and freedom: an exhilarating screw-the-consequences leap into the bizarre.
The Needle Drop

MGMT's Congratulations makes me want to say this to the band: Congratulations.

MGMT may be dazed, but they’re not tweaked out yet.
American Songwriter

MGMT plots a strange course for their listeners with Congratulations, but the material here often exceeds that of the band’s initial full-length.

Under The Radar
They never fully reconcile this conundrum, but have nonetheless created a fine record, which, while distantly removed stylistically from their first, doesn't lose grasp of their innate pop instincts, channeling them in a more elliptical, silvery manner.
Coke Machine Glow
While MGMT may no longer peddle the kind of instant-pleasure-point melodic textures that propelled the band's most well-known songs into so many playlists, they're up to something far more interesting: releasing a major, mainstream objet d'art without for a minute fooling themselves that it "matters."
Entertainment Weekly
Undoubtedly, some fans will be left feeling deflated, but this odd little sonic onion ultimately rewards those patient enough to peel the layers.
Drowned in Sound

Congratulations is no more impenetrable than the Flaming Lips at their most commericial, with Sonic Boom offering a bright, upfront mix that keeps the baffling array of omichords, guitars, sitars, synths, organs and FX percolating in dynamic, uncluttered fashion.

Every track here has successful passages, but frustratingly, they too often turn out to be detours or trap doors. In general, the less cluttered and more focused their tracks are, the better they turn out.
It's a brave, sometimes successful, but ultimately flawed attempt to evolve and grow the band's sound. The one crime is a distinct lack of any memorable tunes, but it will certainly stand as one of 2010's more interesting releases.

In the absence of Oracular’s pulsing, dance-ready synth-pop, Congratulations takes its cues from the cosmic-charged psychedelia of that album’s latter half.


Overall, MGMT's refusal to co-operate with the listener jars with the crisp and professional production – which, despite Sonic Boom's involvement, is more Van Dyke Parks than Spacemen 3 and leaves Congratulations sitting somewhere in the middle, not complex enough for the prats, but too obscure for the jerks.

NOW Magazine
None of the songs hit as hard as Kids or Electric Feel, but there's also no filler (which is more than we can say for OS). Instead, the band delivers a consistent if self-indulgent offering of oddball prog-pop.
The Guardian

Their mainstream audience should flee now, but Congratulations is more than mere commercial suicide. Their perversity has produced a sonic adventure, with lovely moments.

Rolling Stone

With Congratulations, they attempt to not just keep it weird — which they've done — but to figure out how they can be in it for the long haul. It's a solid start.

MGMT have (purposely?) lost that instant magic that they effortlessly whipped up with those debut singles, and in trying to re-establish themselves as artists that don't need the commercial mainstream to survive, they've created a record that lacks any defining characteristics to call its own.
Tiny Mix Tapes

While the only ostensible reason for MGMT’s stylistic 180 is to seem less like a lightweight pop act, the songs on Oracular were far more engaging and better written than almost anything here.

Slant Magazine
In striving rather openly to set their sophomore effort apart from what they view as the critically acclaimed trappings of their debut, MGMT offers what is, essentially, an album of B-sides--a few bright spots strung together with half-baked concepts and monotony, in need of a lot less knob-tweaking and a whole lot more rewrites.

Congratulations shares nary a sonic smidgen with Oracular Spectacular, instead existing in a netherworld where mod-era psychedelia meets prog-rock and where the ecstatic heights of the band's debut don't exist.

No Ripcord
None of the songs are good enough as growers or deep tracks to hold up the album.

Woohoo, today was my birthday! You know what that means: special birthday review!
I decided to revisit and re-review one of my favorite albums of all-time, "Congratulations" by MGMT. This record is very important for me, as when I first heard it, it opened up a new musical world to me. Before listening to this album, I had little experience with psychedelic music, and it had yet to become a favorite genre of mine. Thanks to this record, however, I was able to change the way I viewed ... read more


Contrario a lo que muchos piensan, el fracaso inicial de Congratulations no se debe tanto en parte a lo musical, la verdad es que aun si MGMT hubiera creado el mejor álbum de la historia con su segundo disco hubiera sido un fracaso igualmente, porque el caso de Congratulations no es uno de esos casos Pinkerton comunes, es uno llevado al extremo.

Volvamos por un momento a la mitad de los años 2000, en materia Rock pues las cosas seguían muy fuertes, recientemente ... read more


Siberian Breaks is one of the finest songs this decade has to offer


This is such a fun album!!!!! I didn’t know MGMT were even capable of something like Siberian Breaks. I always just dismissed them as every other basic psychedelic band but on this album they are much more than that


siberian breaks has to be their greatest song


I definitely prefer Oracular and LDA to this album, but this album does contain some of their most genuine artistic output. I may bump up the rating when I acquire to the sound more. I've only heard it all the way through once.

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