Phoebe Bridgers - Punisher
Critic Score
Based on 43 reviews
2020 Ratings: #7 / 849
Year End Rank: #2
User Score
2020 Ratings: #1
Liked by 825 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
Northern Transmissions

Punisher is a rare album. One that has been anxiously anticipated and also fulfills expectations on every level. There’s an understated charge that elevates every single moment in Bridger’s songs to the point where they are almost excruciatingly relatable.

100
RIOT

If the state of the world hasn’t already alerted you that it’s officially going to be a Sad Girl Summer, Phoebe Bridgers’ Punisher will have you staring at the ceiling, questioning the state of the world with a single tear down your cheek.

100
Evening Standard

Phoebe Bridgers finds more candour and heartbreak in one line on Punisher than most find in an entire album.

100
The Forty-Five
‘Punisher’ sparkles with quiet self-assurance. So it should – it’s one of the year’s most beautiful records so far; a poignant tribute to life’s twists and turns.
100
Dork
To take the album simply for what it is on the surface would be a huge discredit to the talent behind it. This is the kind of album that seeps under your skin the more you listen; romanticising the everyday and highlighting the beauty in the mundane.
100
Q Magazine
The end of the world rarely sounds this good.
100
The Telegraph
It may be only the 25-year-old’s second album, but this is a magnificently intelligent record that rewards close listening at every step.
100
Albumism

While I can’t say I was prepared for Punisher to ask as much of me as it did, I’m still moved by it, unsettled by it, and captivated by it.

100
The Arts Desk
Beguiling innocence is contrasted with an uncanny knowingness.
100
NME

The LA songwriter’s ability to paint this lingering feeling of dread so vividly is perhaps the biggest factor in her rapid rise to cultish indie household name; just look at the state of the world right now.

91
Consequence of Sound
A remarkable record that dazzles and beams with restless energy and twisted dream logic.
91
A.V. Club

Phoebe Bridgers has created a musical monument to our dissociative age with Punisher. It’s an album about sleepless nights and sinking feelings in the pit of your stomach, wrapped in a musical package that’s both feather-light and lush enough to run your fingers through.

90
PopMatters

At 25, Phoebe Bridgers is, by all metrics, an artist at the beginning of her career, though Punisher sounds more like the work of a time-tested veteran perfecting a style she's been honing for years.

90
DIY
As the record builds to a final cathartic hushed scream, ‘Punisher’ marks a clear step forward, but one that remains as fundamentally graceful as all that has come before.
90
AllMusic
It's an album of shockingly self-aware explorations of dark feelings and Bridgers is more willing than ever before to throw herself headlong into the darkness.
90
Louder Than War

The album is fantastic and I can’t recommend listening to it enough. Punisher combines the sound of indie rock with thoughtful lyricism and a tremendous amount of ambitious songwriting, even in its more peaceful moments.

90
musicOMH
Punisher is funny but serious, subtle yet obtuse, familiar and somehow simultaneously entirely unique. Even if in the final analysis it’s still not massively folky.
90
God Is in the TV

Punisher is a graceful, elegant and confident record that firmly cements Phoebe Bridgers as one of the most important artists of this generation.

90
The Sydney Morning Herald
This stunning album offers a generous look at the intellectual and emotional mind of one of the most exciting young artists to emerge in recent years.
88
Paste

Her sophomore album Punisher cements what may be Bridgers’ most understated gift of all: her seemingly innate ability to capture the mundanity of modern sadness in song.

87
Pitchfork
On her marvelous second album, Phoebe Bridgers defines her songwriting: candid, multi-dimensional, slyly psychedelic, and full of heart. Her music has become a world unto itself.
85
Earmilk

Punisher is a powerful work of catharsis, a reminder that ending toxic relationships is equally as painful as it is necessary. Bridgers has an incredible ability to construct grand, poetic metaphors, while simultaneously grounding each song in incredibly specific scenes and moments.

81
Beats Per Minute

The main difference between Stranger in the Alps and Punisher is simply maturation of her writing, which might well have come from working with so many talented songwriters in the last couple of years – but you would never mistake one of Bridgers’ songs for anyone else’s.

80
Mojo
It's artfully rumpled, but the ragged angry gasps that close the record confirm Bridgers' songwriting isn't the effortless dream it seems.
80
Uncut
Bridgers' second solo album confirms that the first was no fluke.
80
Upset
A work of breathtaking beauty.
80
Clash

‘Punisher’ is an immense album tackling the ugly and absurd sides to life with beauty, humour and self-awareness. It’s a unique reporting style and a key statement.

80
Slant Magazine

The end of the world is a central detail on Punisher, an influence over the uncertainty that falls over these dark but gorgeous songs.

80
Exclaim!

Bridgers gives you the moon on Punisher. Which is to say that she gives you everything that you are looking for in a Phoebe Bridgers album but still manages to make it feel miraculous and larger than life.

80
Crack Magazine

The emotional clarity of Phoebe Bridgers’ debut Stranger in the Alps was as striking as a kick in the shins. On Punisher, that clarity is hidden behind a smokescreen of uncertainties.

80
The Needle Drop

The emotional potency of Punisher is undeniable.

80
The Observer

Bridgers’s second album under her own name, Punisher moves forward confidently from her 2017 debut, Stranger in the Alps.

80
The Independent
Punisher has the effect of a particularly pummelling massage.
80
Under The Radar

Punisher has more than its fair share of transcendent moments.

80
The Line of Best Fit

Punisher is that rarest of beasts. A record that grows with each listen, that takes it’s time for its stories to unravel, and that wears its love of literature on its sleeve as comfortably as it does its love of music.

80
Gigwise

Creating a record that builds on her reputation as the best songwriter on the block while acknowledging the humorous and also political bent of her media presence, Punisher is a triumph in understanding and toying with expectations.

80
American Songwriter

Reteaming with co-producers Ethan Gruska and Tony Berg, Bridgers pulls the listener into a weary world only she could master. It’s exhaustive but redemptive, and she casts her songwriting into fire and brimstone, only to later yank it free in the knick of time.

80
Rolling Stone

Eleven expertly rendered, largely downcast songs about broken faith, desperate, occasionally self-destructive love, and tenuous recovery.

70
No Ripcord

Over the past few years, it may have seemed like Bridgers was a team player, but on Punisher, she reannounces herself as a solo songwriter reaching her peak.

70
Sputnikmusic
On her sophomore solo album, following a few side projects and features on several nondescript indie songs, Phoebe Bridgers seems content to let her voice and lyrics do the heavy lifting.
70
Loud and Quiet

This is an awkward record in places, but then, so is Bridgers; her sheer force of personality remains her greatest asset, and it’s more than enough to carry Punisher over the line.

65
Spectrum Culture

The disc nails certain facets of her experience with its open and careful language, and that singular, unending pursuit keeps the album focused.

Beeyyaahh
100

This morning I woke up at 5am, having a panic attack. At any point I could have probably tried to figure out why, or what caused it, but I didn’t. I just really wanted to get back to sleep. Instead, I decided to try out the new Phoebe record. In a matter of its short run-time, and my brain not being fully awake yet, I feel like I got a lot more than I was expecting.

As someone who was mildly satisfied with Stranger In The Alps, I really hadn’t made my mind up on Bridgers as an ... read more

Doublez
83

Like an open book, Punisher is one of this year's sincerest albums, deliberately breaking the codes of intimacy and not afraid to display its fears and questions. It is a totally immersive journey in the company of the prodigious Phoebe Bridgers.

There is no doubt, and we were aware of it, that Phoebe Bridgers is not only talented, she is a hard worker. She has been building a solid track record for four years now. Punisher is an album she mainly made while she was on tour. As if she was on ... read more

Chode
80

#3 of my Top 50 Albums of 2020: https://www.albumoftheyear.org/user/chode/list/29961/chodes-top-50-albums-of-2020/

Intricately barebones with its compositions, ethereal with its vocals, potent with its poetry; Phoebe Bridger’s Punishers stands tall as one of 2020’s best behemoths. Actually, behemoth may be the wrong word to describe this album. It’s more like a... phantom. Something that may seem weak at first, but holds a lot of inner strength. If you don’t like this ... read more

dioxnt
78

Clearly a good album
it's a little bit overrated but that doesn't mean it's bad

100

BRO THIS IS A MASTERPIECE

95

This album is an Autumn staple. Phoebe's haunting vocals and depressing lyrics put you in a state of existentialism. I've never listened to an album so much on repeat. An absolute favorite. Cannot wait to see what is next from Phoebe.

Highlights include:

Moon Song
Halloween
Kyoto
Chinese Sateliite
I Know the End
Graceland Too

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Track List

1DVD Menu
1:09
83
2Garden Song
3:39
91
3Kyoto
3:04
95
4Punisher
3:09
91
5Halloween
4:31
88
6Chinese Satellite
3:37
92
7Moon Song
4:37
89
8Savior Complex
4:01
92
9ICU
3:10
89
10Graceland Too
3:56
89
11I Know The End
5:44
96
Total Length: 40 minutes
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Added on: April 9, 2020