Critic Score
Based on 26 reviews
2016 Ratings: #313 / 947
User Score
Based on 396 ratings
2016 Ratings: #99
Liked by 5 people
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The Skinny

Fiery hip-hop instrumentals, creamy rhythm and blues balladry and classic lounge vibes are explored with equal excitement – and pulled off with equal panache.


While IV is extraordinary for delivering fresh music that elaborates on their past work, it feels particularly exceptional because of its forward momentum. 

The Line of Best Fit

There’s a richness to IV which was not present on their last record, and it revolutionises their appeal.

It's easy to see why BBNG are the type of jazz group that appeals to people who normally don't care for jazz. They're music lovers, first and foremost, and they're directly in tune with what's happening in the music world. They blend numerous influences and don't conform to any traditions. More than anything, their music is exuberant and immensely enjoyable.
Loud and Quiet
‘IV’ ends up resembling more two adjacent EPs than a single body of work. While that might be to the detriment of the whole, the split doesn’t detract from its individual parts, which remain stylish, sensitive and expressive throughout.
Ultimately, BADBADNOTGOOD – along with other prominent forces like Kamasi Washington and Robert Glasper – are providing a growing wave of accessible jazz-influenced music which will only gain more traction as time goes on.
Consequence of Sound

These are songs full of poise, jukebox jams cut by dapper musicians in an analogue studio mixed with contemporary jazz. IV sounds as timeless as the instrumentation itself.


On their fourth record, the succinctly titled IV, they’ve reined in their jam band impulses, delivering a velvet-crushed portrait of an effervescent lounge act in the 21st century.

‘IV’ marks a refinement of the BADBADNOTGOOD sound and as ever is filled to the brim with gorgeous melodies and impressive digressions. Will it do anything for those without a love for instrumental tunes? Perhaps not, but those with broader tastes are in for a treat.

The collective’s fourth album serves as a roadmap connecting all of the giants they’ve lent their talents to (Ghostface Killah, Earl Sweatshirt, Danny Brown), continuing a case for why jazz is currently in a state of heavy crossbreeding with other genres. But with IV, they also stand poised to emerge from their place as the backing band.

No Ripcord

BBNG have always been fluent and sonically articulate, but enlisting the talents of suitable vocalists to thicken their smokescreen strengthens their suit.

The Needle Drop
Toronto jazz outfit BADBADNOTGOOD returns with some surprising and well-incorporated musical guests on their new album.
The 405

Grandiose aims are never to be scoffed at, but considering that IV's highs are so remarkably high and its lows are so forgettable, one cannot help but wish that BBNG had smoothed out the product.

Taken on their own, each track solidifies the group’s wild imagination, but ‘IV’ is tough to stomach as the free-flowing, full-bodied juggernaut that it is.
NOW Magazine

While IV shows a progression, it lacks the progressiveness that would keep BBNG in a league with their aforementioned jazz/hip-hop predecessors and peers. However admirably, it stays in its own lane.

Drowned in Sound

The sneaky interplay that once crackled at the core has fizzled out, as the band drift completely to austere gold.

Pretty Much Amazing

Now that they’re older, IV feels subdued and professional, something you would never expect to associate with the quartet ... Though they’re talented, as time creeps up on them, the pulse behind BadBadNotGood’s mission has begun to wear.

Although I like that BADBADNOTGOOD chose to put some more fun experimental elements into their music, sometimes I didn't find that everything landed as well as their previous outing (not including their collaboration with Ghostface).

BBNG bring some really cool jazz fusion to their sound in a dynamic way. III was a magnificent piece of modern jazz that took their sound in a direction that really brought jazz into the modern era, with creative and bright production to boot. I'm not as familar ... read more
A fantastic listen, it's also nice to hear some synths thrown into their sound along with more vocal features to keep the sound interesting.

Best Track: Lavender
Worst Track: IV
"creamy rhythm"
The Skinny hit the nail right on the fucking head with that.
listen to this before shower.
Jazzy and funky
Superb melodies
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Added on: May 17, 2016