Sudan Archives - Athena
Critic Score
Based on 10 reviews
2019 Ratings: #150 / 583
User Score
Based on 97 ratings
2019 Ratings: #219
November 1, 2019 / Release Date
LP / Format
Stones Throw / Label
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
PopMatters

On her first full album Athena, Sudan Archives is soulful, surreal, and makes music on her own distinct and magnificent terms.

90
Clash

On her debut LP ‘Athena’ Sudan Archives has created an album that is the logical next step on her evolution, but also features call-backs to her previous three releases.

85
The Line of Best Fit

Sudan radiates confidence on Athena, uniting distinct musical elements as if they belonged together all along. It’s an album that sounds like nothing else.

80
AllMusic

Her freest, richest, most accomplished work.

80
The Guardian

The US singer and violinist’s debut album contains some of the most viscerally gorgeous music put to record this year.

80
Crack Magazine

Athena is ... a record of true beauty and resilience.

70
Loud and Quiet

It’s a record unusual enough to be increasingly intriguing over repeated listens as you try and unpick quite what Parks is trying to say, and – perhaps the more pertinent question here – the unique way she’s trying to say it.

70
Exclaim!

An artist in full exploration mode like Sudan Archives excites for both the existing output and for the higher heights they will potentially attain.

60
The Observer

Though the songs often lean more towards the arty end of the mainstream, losing touch slightly with the startling radicalism of Sudan Archives’ early sound.

musicmagpie55
76
Violins are not conventional instruments in contemporary pop and R&B music. What makes Sudan Archives so exciting is how she weaves elements of classical, funk, and pop music to produce an entirely unique music experience. This plays thematically into her work as well; she explores the relationship between black women, representation, and modern history through songs that engage with myths and spirituality. Beautiful, complicated, and expansive, Sudan Archives debut is a gorgeous ... read more
Plats
86
Incorporating violin into contemporary R&B and art pop, Sudan Archives isn't really what you would call a conventional artist. The violins and production are great here and the overall concept is empowering. There are a few tracks that don't impress due to how sparse they are, but "Athena" is still a solid debut outing.

Fav Tracks: Black Vivaldi Sonata, Glorious, Pelicans In The Summer, Honey, Did You Know, Iceland Moss, Confessions, Down On Me

Least Fav Track: ... read more
wless
88
this album seamlessly incorporates the violin into the sound of contemporary art pop, creating an unlikely combination that is both interesting and exciting.
Tsareena
87
Great debut album from Sudan Archives. Love her mix of influences from electronic to North African music to more contemporary rnb for an album that still stays true to her. Thoughtful writing that adds personality to Sudan Archives' work that I felt was missing in her first two EPs.
Faves: Honey, Glorious, Black Vivaldi Sonata
MariellyAkarius
75
Athena is not a conventional Art pop/Alt. R&B record, there’s folktronica and neo soul feelings on the arrangements. sometimes it’s not that impressive, especially when she’s not using her violin abilities, some common choices in 2 or 3 tracks but still a good record
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Track List

  1. Did You Know
  2. Confessions
  3. Black Vivaldi Sonata
  4. Down On Me
  5. Ballet of the Unhatched Twins I
  6. Green Eyes
  7. Iceland Moss
  8. Coming Up
  9. House of Open Tuning II
  10. Glorious
  11. Stuck
  12. Limitless
  13. Honey
  14. Pelicans In the Summer
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Added on: September 5, 2019