Dirty Projectors - Swing Lo Magellan
Critic Score
Based on 38 reviews
2012 Ratings: #51 / 1098
Year End Rank: #19
User Score
Based on 366 ratings
2012 Ratings: #40
Liked by 5 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

91
A.V. Club

This relaxed, informal execution makes Swing Lo Magellan seem vulnerable, imperfect, and earnestly human. 

91
Pretty Much Amazing

Where past Projectors releases have occasionally bordered on sterile – or at the very least clinical – this one hums with activity.

90
musicOMH

In reigning in the more unpredictable aspects of his music, Longstreth has managed to retain the essence that has made Dirty Projectors such a continually challenging and invigorating creative outfit

90
No Ripcord

Whereas once, Longstreth was a composer, on Swing Lo Magellan he tries his hand at being a songwriter. And it’s the most refreshing move of his career.

89
Beats Per Minute

Swing Lo Magellan is generally celebratory, relishing in life, music, collaboration, and creativity.

88
Pitchfork

Swing Lo Magellan is a confident step into the spotlight that neither depends upon public expectations nor shies away from them.

80
Drowned in Sound

Deadly serious even at its most eccentric, wilfully awkward even at its most accessible, dense and intricate even at its most freewheeling. 

80
Consequence of Sound

Swing Lo Magellan is an album that will break hearts, bring joy, and deliver emotional notes that few others could.

80
PopMatters

By cleaning up and clearing up everything that’s going on in his head, Longstreth is getting better and better at expressing the music in his heart through the songs in his mind.

80
Under The Radar

While Dirty Projectors have always been driven by core member David Longstreth's vision, Magellan benefits from its feel as a band record.

80
Paste

Listening to Swing Lo Magellan feels more like sneaking up on the band in the midst of an intense rehearsal, rather than the group coming forward and saying, “Look what we’ve made.”

75
The 405

It's a calmer musical experience but it still hasn't lost any of that genius originality that the band have shown in earlier releases.

70
FACT Magazine

The tension between classic cues and experimentation prevents the album from reaching its potential as the pop realization of Dirty Projectors.

40
Tiny Mix Tapes

Simply put, the music on Swing Lo can’t support its great ideas.

KingIsCole10
85

This album is a very strong release from them. It's a lot more relaxing than Bitte Orca and I actually think it might flow better. Lyrics are really strong here as well as the instrumentation. Loads of really enjoyable tracks. Favorite tracks here are About to Die, Swing Lo Magellan and The Socialites.

Hayden7575
85

Swing Lo Magellan sees Dirty Projectors experiment with an organic folk core, twisting in ideas from both alternative and indie rock. The resulting sound is entirely unique, both for the group and the landscape as a whole, yet the confidence that exudes from their efforts is wholly their own. Pleasant and relaxing tunes with personal singing and songwriting collide to provide a down-to-earth, grounded experience, and I highly recommend it.

Melancoholic
75

Very good.

MagnetoJenkins
65

A weird band in a pickle. Trying to follow up your 2009 album that launched you into the worlds of critical acclaim and commercial success. Dirty Projectors, Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear, etc. These folks really wanted to go back to something weirder, but it all sounds uninspired. Sure, David Longstreth sounds convincingly paranoid on a couple tracks. But about what?

KingIsCole10
85

This album is a very strong release from them. It's a lot more relaxing than Bitte Orca and I actually think it might flow better. Lyrics are really strong here as well as the instrumentation. Loads of really enjoyable tracks. Favorite tracks here are About to Die, Swing Lo Magellan and The Socialites.

Hayden7575
85

Swing Lo Magellan sees Dirty Projectors experiment with an organic folk core, twisting in ideas from both alternative and indie rock. The resulting sound is entirely unique, both for the group and the landscape as a whole, yet the confidence that exudes from their efforts is wholly their own. Pleasant and relaxing tunes with personal singing and songwriting collide to provide a down-to-earth, grounded experience, and I highly recommend it.

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Added on: April 2, 2012