Collapsed In Sunbeams

Arlo Parks - Collapsed In Sunbeams
Critic Score
Based on 35 reviews
2021 Ratings: #80 / 699
Year End Rank: #9
User Score
2021 Ratings: #122
Liked by 138 people
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The breakout star has crafted a quietly subversive pop record that, for all its deceptive softness, challenges old perceptions of sexuality and mental health.


As a debut, it is a sublime body of work from the kind of artist who is meticulous in all aspects of her craft.

Consequence of Sound

It would be deceptively easy to say that in its calming, percussive bedroom pop, this album is using its overarching love or softness as an antidote to the harsh realities and sadness with which it grapples — but really, this album sets out less to negate or to fix something and more to acknowledge and illustrate the complexities of many things at once.

Northern Transmissions

At once effortless and dripping with deluxe sonic nuances, the focal point of Collapsed In Sunbeams is the crème de la crème fragrance of Arlo Parks’ exquisite voice, embroidered with her elysian lyricism.

The Line of Best Fit

The versatility of Collapsed In Sunbeams is beyond comendable. Parks seemingly effortless lyricism and laidback melodies make her songs cosy in winter, and chilled in summer - always to be uplifting and comforting.


Whilst Parks frequently invokes soulful legends and contemporaries with her sound, she is undoubtedly setting a path of her own with her incredible lyricism; a beautiful combination of performance, poetry, and emotion that stops you in your tracks.


Parks's appeal comes from her storytelling. It captures the burdens of young adulthood through a melancholy lens unique to her generation, calling upon just about every sonic reference in the book.

The Young Folks
She’s created one of the loveliest, most affirming albums of the year—an auspicious start to an already masterful career.
Under The Radar

Her take on bedroom pop feels unusually distinctive in a genre that has exploded in popularity over the past few years. Moreover, her ability to communicate the raw hardships of life with universality, compassion, and hope is genuinely moving and makes her debut a testament to her artistry.

Spectrum Culture

The young artist has put together a stunning display of her talent for “making rainbows out of something painful.”


As a debut album, Collapsed in Sunbeams has summed up what Arlo Parks is all about. There may be nothing special about the production but it's the poetry and dream like melody that shines through.


The 20-year-old punctuates beautifully languid, trip-hoppy vignettes witha voice redolent of Martina Topley-Bird and a neat line in spoken-word poetic musings.


Reflective, intuitive and introspective, ‘Collapsed In Sunbeams’ is an immensely gripping debut.


... its vivid subject matter dealing with depression, sexuality, prejudice and matters of the heart with an uplifting old-school feel complemented by celestial vocals.


She’s an easy star-next-door to root for, and on her debut record, she makes light work of demonstrating exactly why the nation has become so invested in her art.

The Guardian

The London singer-songwriter’s warm, conversational and observant debut justifies the hype.

The Independent

Parks successfully establishes a style that combines emotional directness with a rich sensory palate.

FLOOD Magazine

Even with its flaws Sunbeams establishes Arlo as an artist who finds middle ground between nonchalant cool and somber earnestness in a way few artists can manage.

The Forty-Five
Playing to her strengths as a writer has paid off, for ‘Collapsed In Sunbeams’ does everything a debut should – it hooks you into Arlo Parks’ world, whether she’s sitting beside you or not.
The Observer
With its silky delicacy, percussion that plays with everything from trip-hop to neosoul, and that deft voice gliding through sublime imagery, this is a quietly enriching and powerful first album.

This is a remarkably mature debut album for a twenty-year-old, filled with poetic flourishes, luxurious soul-pop stylings and Parks’ velvety, characterful voice.

The Irish Times
Anaïs Oluwatoyin Estelle Marinho could well have (and may yet still) enjoyed a fruitful career as a performance poet. Still, her talents stretch far beyond the written word as her debut album is incredibly musically engaging too.
Evening Standard
As a whole, these are songs that offer comfort rather than expressing pain – which could be what her generation, and the rest of us, need the most.
Record Collector
You don't have to be born in the 21st century to appreciate Parks' flair for language on these evocative, detailed vignettes.

Her sound is compelling enough that, even when her lyrics regress into platitudes, her music remains stirring and intense.

Beats Per Minute

Collapsed in Sunbeams fulfils most of its undue expectations, a collection of gentle poetics and piercingly observant songwriting that revels in its intimacy.

Loud and Quiet

It’s a confident, if perhaps musically safe, release that will help to cement her reputation for relatability.


Parks' wise words are indeed the album's saving grace. With her precocious writing capabilities, it's possible to envision the potential of someone who really could become the voice of this new generation.

Crack Magazine

It’s Parks’ poeticism that marks her out as someone special – and makes her meditations on Gen-Z adolescence worthy of your time.


If the musical qualities of Collapsed in Sunbeams suffer from a bit of sameyness by the end, the formula is a soothing, pleasant one with sentiment to spare and, as a debut, full of promise.


Arlo Parks' Collapsed in Sunbeams is an emotionally wrenching journey through relationship drama set to low-key pop songs with hints of hip-hop and R&B scattered throughout.

No Ripcord

Getting lost in the world Parks takes us in is surely captivating and invites deep reflection. But once the moment has passed, you wonder if it carries any lasting impact.

God Is in the TV

Collapsed in Sunbeams showcases the obvious talent of Arlo Parks who writes subtle yet immediate and impactful neo-soul hits.  Anyone listening to this LP will walk away with a series of singles to treasure.


The hotly tipped 20-year-old singer-songwriter debuts with a cool, confident record that occasionally blends into pleasant monotony.

The Arts Desk

Every time I listen to Collapsed in Sunbeams I’m warmed and engaged at the start but then focus drifts off. It becomes a background mood rather than a song cycle.


‘collapsed in sunbeams’ is an excellent record from arlo parks; a delightful achievement of collaboration and creation. there are beautiful moments of spoken word, explosive melodies, and depictions of parks’ inclusive lyrics.

Arlo gifts this work to the collective public. the project is a memorable success that will influence years and generations to come.

‘collapsed in sunbeams’ hardly feels like an album, it is more-so a collection of confrontational tunes; ... read more


British singer, songwriter and poet Arlo Parks has, at last, connected a crop of tracks that make up a compact encounter with an album, which has been nearly unprecedented until now in 2021. Her debut record “Collapsed In Sunbeams” encapsulates an incredibly comforting atmosphere which correlates to the hardships that she has persevered throughout her life and places on display her talent for the crafting of tunes that perfectly balance melancholy and hopefulness, while concurrently ... read more


One of the most beautiful things to experience with music is that realization that something you're listening to is going to be sticking with you for a long time. Maybe you land on an album that follows you for the next few days, having songs that you find yourself returning to on occasion. Other times its an album that you immediately recognize will undoubtedly be with you for the rest of the year and likely beyond. Collapsed In Sunbeams falls quickly into the category of a new long-term ... read more


A brilliant piece of work from beginning to end - takes you on a journey that you wish would never end


:( aaagh, it was just not my type.

Fav track:
- Black Dog


10/12. Fav Tracks: Too Good; Caroline; Black Dog; Green Eyes; Eugene

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Added on: October 20, 2020