Crab Day

Cate Le Bon - Crab Day
Critic Score
Based on 20 reviews
2016 Ratings: #384 / 858
User Score
Based on 68 ratings
2016 Ratings: #420
April 15, 2016 / Release Date
LP / Format
Drag City / Label
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Loud and Quiet
It’s quite a leap from the scuzzy garage of the superb ‘Hermits on Holiday’ – the LP Le Bon jointly released with Tim Presley last year – and even better for it, too.
The Line of Best Fit

By coalescing a number of everyday influences – from Television to John Cale – and adding her own distinctive formula, Crab Day doesn’t really sound like anything else out there.


Crab Day is a voyage into doubt led by a queasy compass, and a ringleader who's prepared to stake out uncertain territory. Le Bon always keeps you guessing, making the old traditions of guitar-oriented rock feel arbitrary, too.

The Skinny

Crab Day is a madcap wonder, and if its singular aesthetic is ultimately less an advancement of the vision and more a honing of the craft, its offbeat artistry is way beyond the everyday humdrum.

The Guardian
Long may Le Bon continue to weird up the rulebook.
Asking familiar questions in downright bizarre ways, with a musical palette that continues to revel in awkwardness, slipperiness, and experimentation, Cate Le Bon is a dab hand at holding a warped mirror up to life, and reflecting things in unexpected ways by now.

The beauty of Crab Day is that it can be dismantled and its individual components laid bare to reveal itself as a stunning work of alchemical mastery, or it can be enjoyed simply as a singular, coherent musical object which still aims to disrupt the segregationist agenda of a corporate-run, institutionalized music machine.

The 405

Crab Day is an idiosyncratic and imaginative record, with fresh highlights appearing on every listen.

Under The Radar

It's more of an invitation to wonder than it is a self-explanatory LP, which makes for a powerful resonance with Le Bon's exciting new beginning.

When Le Bon gets the balance right ... she is undoubtedly one of the most interesting, original singer-songwriters out there. She over-eggs the pudding occasionally, but that’s a small price to pay for adventure.
Drowned in Sound

A few years in the California sun doesn’t seem to have affected Cate Le Bon’s music too much, and thank goodness for that. She’s always had an ear for the tuneful — and the abstruse — and her fourth album, Crab Day, doesn’t find her deviating from that left field trajectory.


Crab Day is a largely canonical affair, despite all of the extra window dressing.

Consequence of Sound

Rather than achieving that undeniable emotional pull, Crab Day ends up taxing, rather than delighting, the listener.


While the art-wonk approach is naturally distancing, songs like ‘I’m A Dirty Attic’, ‘Yellow Blinds, Cream Shadows’, ‘We Might Revolve’ and ‘How Do You Know’ include just enough melodic allure to draw you into Cate’s world of crustacean crookedness.

Especially dig the title track, Love is Not Love, I'm a Dirty Attic & What's Not Mine.
Mug Museum is one of my favourite records of all time and this did not let me down in the slightest. The instrumentals are fuller, but the intimate and warm sense of nostalgia remains in tact.

A really fun record, especially in a lyrical sense. She is truly one of the best songwriters around at the moment.

Best tracks: Wonderful, We Might Revolve, Yellow Blinds, Cream Shadows and What's Not Mine.
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Year End Lists

#7/Piccadilly Records
#16/Q Magazine
#90/Rough Trade

Track List

  1. Crab Day
  2. Love Is Not Love
  3. Wonderful
  4. Find Me
  5. I'm a Dirty Attic
  6. I Was Born On the Wrong Day
  7. We Might Revolve
  8. Yellow Blinds, Cream Shadows
  9. How Do You Know?
  10. What's Not Mine
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Added on: January 29, 2016