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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
Drowned in Sound
It’s a vivid and beautiful painting that you can walk into; a magic window into another world that I'd be happy to get lost in, and never come back.
100
PopMatters
The result, I believe, is a singular work of art whose power will only grow over time.
100
Slant Magazine
The album is a precious—in every sense of the word—masterpiece.
100
The Observer

Ys is an exceptional piece of art in the broadest sense - give it the chance to grow on you.

94
Pitchfork

Ys offers an endless wealth of substance, teeming with dense, well-mapped beauty.

90
AllMusic

Yes, Ys is a demanding listen, but it's also a rewarding and inspiring one. Letting it unfold and absorbing more each time you hear it is a delight.

90
Spin
She doesn’t just rescue the freak-folk scene from hollow caricature, she bestows it with real human depth.
90
Sputnikmusic
In years to come, we’ll be sure to see Newsom’s positive and now almost essential influence.
Craigold
100

Ayo Waddup, Toni Strombolli here, you can call me Craigold, today I'm gonna be showing you how to suck your own dick in FIVE EASY STEPS. And ladies (which I know a lot of them are here) don't you worry, because I'll be showing you the old Ouroboros trick - after class, ahaha, if you know what I mean. 🐸
First, you're gonna wanna lie down on a soft surface, a bed, a carpet, a furry's pelvic bone, whateva, and you might need to rest your head on something a bit propped up as well, a pillow ... read more

Toasterqueen12
100

Toaster: Yeah I'm emotionally stable

Joanna Newsom: *Shifts an octave with her voice*

Toaster: *Sudden Heart Attack*

Goddamn, this FLOORS me. Never has an album by its first second grabbed my attention and forced me to get transported to it's world. This leaves me in TEARS by the end without FAIL! I played this for my friend yesterday, and that was a huge mistake! Didn't expect to have an out of body experience while trying to chill.

Joanna paints such a vivid picture and to be honest, I ... read more

hellodecatur
100

Joanna's most difficult record and also her most rewarding. Although some of these songs are deceptively simple in structure ("Emily" cycles through three or four distinct but equally arresting chord progressions), everything about this record feels massive and maximalist. You'll more than get the gist of Joanna's musical ambitions with one go-through, but repeated listens are also extremely rewarding since some great musical moments (especially in longer passages like "Only ... read more

ElisPlaylist
90

I've said this before, but songs that stretch over 7-8 minutes tend to either bore me or amaze me depending on my mood. Thankfully, this album was the latter.
Every song here feels like I'm being taken on a journey through medieval times, which is helped greatly by the vivid imagery being displayed in the lyrics, as well as Joanna's wistful harp playing.
It might take a while to fully click with me, but I really do love what I hear, just based on first listen. First impressions matter, people!

tj2nimus
78

I'd call it great but the long song format isn't for me

Aoaystheory
74

People who know all the lyrics to this...are you okay?

Can we all agree Joanna was annoying af in high school...like gddamn woman we get it. Sorry, this review is as cringe as a Ys stan. Like no one cares you stan Ys. It's lame but like I get it, the lyrics are good. But Jesus christ, just write a poetry book. Shit is boring as sin. Love the vocals but ugh. It's just not it. I feel like a lot of the high ratings are BS, this is a niche. You barely listen to this, give it up. And ... read more

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Track List

1Emily
12:08
97
2Monkey & Bear
9:28
94
3Sawdust & Diamonds
9:55
93
4Only Skin
16:53
96
5Cosmia
7:17
96
Total Length: 55 minutes

Year End Lists

#3/Paste
#3/Pitchfork
#6/SPIN
#12/Cokemachineglow
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