and the Anonymous Nobody...

De La Soul - and the Anonymous Nobody...
Critic Score
Based on 30 reviews
2016 Ratings: #479 / 947
User Score
Based on 108 ratings
2016 Ratings: #340
Liked by 1 person
August 26, 2016 / Release Date
LP / Format
A.O.I. / Label
Sign In to rate and review


A.V. Club

An eclectic genre mashup with an enviable roster of guests, And The Anonymous Nobody… bristles with creative rebirth and more than a touch of hard-earned, “we’re back” braggadocio.

Pretty Much Amazing

It’s their most musically ambitious record ever and their best since Buhloone Mind State way back in ’93, eclectic with the beats and gnomic with the wit, and it serves as a heartening rejoinder to the emotional and intellectual thinness of most of even the best current hip-hop.

The Skinny

Exhausting, ridiculous and full of life, De La Soul still do it like no-one else.

Drowned in Sound

While they may have had to sacrifice a little of what we love them for, there’s no doubt that this a satisfying, De La Soul-ful comeback from the Long Island Trio.


For the most part, it’s an approach that reaps rich rewards, yielding some of De La’s most interesting and adventurous work for some time.

The Line of Best Fit

While they may have had to sacrifice a little of what we love them for, there’s no doubt that this a satisfying, De La Soul-ful comeback from the Long Island Trio.


The strength of and the Anonymous Nobody… remains how it holds together as a complete, cohesive listen.


And The Anonymous Nobody is a more than worthy edition to their legacy, proving how relevant this treasure of a band is.


Impressive as that range of collaborations might be, some of the LP's very best tracks feature founding members Posdnous, Dave and Maseo all on their own.


And the Anonymous Nobody is an album that, though lacking in congruence, displays De La’s staying power.

Slant Magazine

Tying together this kaleidoscopic roster is a credit to De La Soul as curators, but the leftfield appeal of these guests undermines the group's effort at a fully reflective and personal album—however enthralling it makes the ride.

Rolling Stone

Their greatest strength has always been not caring what hip-hop is supposed to sound like.

Consequence of Sound

While Anonymous Nobody is a brave departure from the sample-heavy triumphs in their past, at times it feels a bit too contrived, too far away from a De La Soul statement. 


The tasteful outnumbers the ridiculous throughout the record, and if you don’t expect tectonic shifts in the way live-band hip-hop beats sound, the cumulative effect is at least thoroughly pleasant.


If they had stuck with what they do best, it would have been one of their stronger albums. As it is, it's a bit of a confused mess that needs some serious editing.

Loud and Quiet

While favouring a new jazz-inflected sound, at its best the record recalls the laid-back beats of ‘Stakes is High’ and the lyrical wit and off-the-wall humour of ‘3 Feet High’.

The Guardian

The way Pos and Dave rap, letting rhymes spill over bar intervals and beyond, is the biggest pleasure, and the straightforward hip-hop tracks such as Pain and Property of are perhaps the best.


It’s only in the moments with somebody else in the driving seat that The Anonymous Nobody shines ... The rest is trapped somewhere between past and present; never quite “classic” De La Soul, save for a few standout tracks, yet attempts to invent and look forward are often left feeling flat and sometimes, just out of place.


There are enough highlights to make And the Anonymous Nobody worth revisiting, but as a whole, the album is just barely above average.

No Ripcord

It’s a good comeback for De La Soul, and there’s plenty to really enjoy here, but there are too many occasions where tracks loiter for too long, not outstaying their welcome as such, just not doing a great deal with it.

NOW Magazine

it's nice to hear De La Soul stretching themselves creatively, and even the less successful detours are interesting additions to an already eclectic catalogue.


The hip-hop legends’ inharmonious makeover has left an assortment of intangible, cloudy compositions.

2016 saw the return of the 2 biggest hippy rap groups, A Tribe Called Quest and De La Soul, and although Tribe's return was an excellent and highly celebrated release, unfortunately, the same cannot be said for De La. This album is just a mess and mixed bag of songs that don't really feel connected or even all that good, this feels like a drag.

Best Track: Memory of... (US)
Worst Track: Genesis (Intro)
Twelve years after the excellent The Grind Date, and the Anonymous Nobody… almost seamlessly continues what De La Soul has always done: putting out quality music, this time pushing boundaries with genre-bending compositions and some very surprising guests.

If there’s a drawback it may be that there are a little too many guests on the album, and consequently not enough De La Soul. But that’s a minor quibble, as the guests mostly bring the goods to complement De La’s ... read more
Good (... I think)

I can't tell if this album wants to be taken seriously or not, there are WAAAAAYYYYYYY too many head-scratching moments for me to call this album great. Like with the bars and the mixing, can be either cringe-worthy or straight up confusing. You'll wonder where the album is going, I believe it only kicks off after during the second half, but even then I can't figure it out.

Best: Here in After, Drawn

Weakest: Memory of...
I'm really confused by this album. It has some really great moments on it, and I have to give them props for using entirely live instrumentation, but this record has some serious duds. They attempt to integrate a fair amount of guests in this record, but some work more naturally than others. However, my main complaint with this album is how all-over-the-place these instrumentals are. I feel like the more naturally hip-hop moments work like a charm, and recall back the De La Soul that we know ... read more
"and the Anonymous Nobody..." brings the funk and wordplay, but not the substance. The clever lyrics, catchy instrumentals and overall idiosyncratic features of De La Soul's newest LP make it standout from many others; however, it does not translate to a top tier hip hop album.

Notable Songs: "Royalty Capes"; "Memory of... (US) [feat. Estelle & Pete Rock]"; "Greyhounds (feat. Usher)"; "Drawn (feat. Little Dragon)"; "Here in After ... read more
Purchasing and the Anonymous Nobody... from Amazon helps support Album of the Year. Or consider a donation?
Become a Donor
Donor badge, no ads + more benefits.

Track List

  1. Genesis (Intro) [feat. Jill Scott]
  2. Royalty Capes
  3. Pain (feat. Snoop Dogg)
  4. Property of (feat. Roc Marciano)
  5. Memory of... (US) [feat. Estelle & Pete Rock]
  6. CBGBS
  7. Lord Intended (feat. Justin Hawkins)
  8. Snoopies (feat. David Byrne)
  9. Greyhounds (feat. Usher)
  10. Sexy Bitch
  11. Trainwreck
  12. Drawn (feat. Little Dragon)
  13. Whoodeeni (Feat. 2Chainz)
  14. Nosed Up
  15. You Go Dave (A Goldblatt Presentation)
  16. Here in After (feat. Damon Albarn)
  17. Exodus (Outro)
Sign in to comment
No one has said anything yet.

Added on: May 6, 2016