Vestiges & Claws

José González - Vestiges & Claws
Critic Score
Based on 21 reviews
2015 Ratings: #490 / 771
User Score
Based on 73 ratings
2015 Ratings: #325
February 17, 2015 / Release Date
LP / Format
Mute / Label
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
AllMusic
These are incredibly moving songs full of bittersweet asides that strike you at first with their haiku-like simplicity, only to draw you deeper into González's iceberg of ideas.
83
A.V. Club

While his newest, Vestiges & Claws, doesn’t undertake any significant departures in style, additional layers of guitar and vocals subtly evolve his minimalist catalog with warmer and richer tones.

80
Drowned in Sound

In his own words, this record is 'less minimalist' than In Our Nature, and it's true that the whole sound of this album is far less bleak than its predecessor - much warmer and fuller.

80
NME
The record is littered with painstakingly layered guitar parts, mellifluous melodies and clapping drumbeats that nod to Russell’s posthumous collection ‘Love Is Overtaking Me’.
77
Paste

Although Vestiges & Claws may wander close to guitar-based, folk-rock homogeny, González’s musings offer a cerebral reminder to enjoy figuring out what it all means.

75
Consequence of Sound
Despite taking a smaller look at the universe, this is actually his densest solo work yet.
70
PopMatters

Vestiges and Claws is simple on the surface, mostly composed of González’s voice and guitar with occasional percussion drifting in, but González makes these miniatures immaculate.

70
American Songwriter

Vestiges And Claws is wintertime music, full of dark chord progressions and haunting melodies from the 36-year-old songwriter.

70
Spin

Unlike on his first two albums, González twists the volume knob up just enough here to sonically divert Vestiges & Claws from its predecessors (or bedroom pop pioneers Nick Drake and Elliott Smith).

66
Pitchfork

Even when Vestiges & Claws exudes strain, González never gives the impression of truly challenging himself. When he draws on the canons of both ancient philosophy and post-punk, he sounds like José González.

60
The 405

For a musician who has produced output of such a consistently high-standard for so long ... it seems like he may have finally let a natural sense of complacency sneak its way into his creative process, which is a real shame.

60
musicOMH

González continues to tweak his original formula on Vestiges & Claws, but does so in such a way that it still retains the uncomplicated honesty that is embedded in his music.

60
Under The Radar

Vestiges and Claws is a succinct evolution for José González and his solo work, an album that promises much more for the next stage of his career.

60
DIY
So strong is this aesthetic that José González doesn’t seem to feel the need to change it.
60
Rolling Stone

Intricate fingerpicking backs up his soft vocals; melodies flow without urgency; vague but evocative lyrics drift to the surface. González's lyrics focus on aging and the inevitability of loss.

60
Billboard

Fans of "Heartbeats" may be disappointed to find that Gonzalez's third solo record, Vestiges & Claws, his first solo set since 2007's In Our Nature, houses some of his least tuneful material to date.

50
No Ripcord

There’s nothing at stake on his latest Vestiges & Claws: instead of coming equipped with an arsenal of ideas, gathered from many years of experience, he lapses into a confusional state that’s often misinterpreted as deep or contemplative.

kcotte
75
el culto que la música puede darle a la vida. Lean mi reseña en http://ganymedemyth.com/sin-categoria/jose-gonzalez-el-culto-la-vida/
SeaBass
73
The playfulness of the guitar from the get go, the smoothness of the voice, the claps and the finger snaps, they’re all contributing to a beautiful relaxed feeling which transmits to the listener. It's a very nice album that commands silence.
Favourite tracks: Ink of a Ghost, Open Book, Leaf Off/The Cave
tha138
72
Soft, fragile acoustic melodies as the most suitable soundtrack to a rainy day.
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Track List

  1. With the Ink of a Ghost
  2. Let It Carry You
  3. Stories We Build, Stories We Tell
  4. The Forest
  5. Leap Off / The Cave
  6. Every Age
  7. What Will 
  8. Vissel
  9. Afterglow
  10. Open Book
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Added on: October 28, 2014