Obsidian

Baths - Obsidian
Critic Score
Based on 20 reviews
2013 Ratings: #237 / 955
User Score
Based on 189 ratings
2013 Ratings: #145
May 28, 2013 / Release Date
LP / Format
Anticon / Label
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
FACT Magazine

By blending the conceptual drive of Post-Foetus and the organic songwriting of Baths, Wiesenfeld has delivered on the promise of Cerulean and found his place among contemporaneous pop experimenters like Grimes and Autre Ne Veut.

90
Exclaim!

On his debut release, Will Wiesenfeld hadn't fully found himself, but on Obsidian, the L.A. musician delivers a much more cohesive vision.

86
Pitchfork

While Obsidian maintains some aspects of Cerulean, namely, its lap-pop intimacy and Wiesenfeld's unsteady, quavering vocals, the shock is in hearing him make a complete heel turn, fearlessly operating like someone absolved of personal repercussion or culpability

85
The 405

Obsidian is the exactly the type of record a Baths fan should be excited for: something simultaneously original, brave, and exciting to listen to over and over again.

83
Pretty Much Amazing

Ultimately, your mood as a listener – and perhaps the weather – will dictate how often you’ll return to Obsidian‘s bleak and beautiful world.

80
Sputnikmusic

There’s a leisurely swagger about Obsidian, leading to a massive change in feel for Baths. There are no bells and whistles this time around, just barren landscapes and lyrics, lyrics, lyrics.

80
AllMusic

Obsidian could have easily been too indulgent or morose, but instead it's soul-baring in ways that feel fresh.

80
The Skinny
Complex, challenging and incredibly rewarding.
80
Slant Magazine

The sense of sardonic, self-deprecating whimsy is what ultimately allows Obsidian to triumph, forming a kind of triangle with the album's two other mainstays: lachrymose piano/string combinations and morphing, spiny undercurrents of electronic percussion.

70
The Line of Best Fit

There’s no denying the technical ability and songcraft is there, and unpicking the layers is the most enjoyable part of listening, but it’s emotional tugging ultimately strikes as hollow, not through insincerity but in being too obfuscated or overbearing for me to really love these songs. 

70
Consequence of Sound

Obsidian is a brave and necessary record that builds on Baths’ glitchy poignance.

70
PopMatters

Obsidian is the dark record it was billed as because it starts to ask its own uncomfortable questions. Love becomes more illusory when it stops getting quoted.

70
Drowned in Sound

For all the dark, depthless beauty of Wiesenfeld’s immaculately constructed record, its solidity feels too opaque. 

70
DIY

Baths’ second album is dark and distressing but ultimately compelling. It’s clear that this is the work of a fascinatingly subversive mind.

60
musicOMH

An album with independent parts that are quite inspired on their own but only form a seemingly infinitely confused whole.

40
No Ripcord

It is not out of disappointment with this darker direction that I am dissatisfied with Obsidian, but its misguided execution.

amygoodall
70
good
joewindlebrox
65
It takes you to a dark and lonely part of the mind, a very promising album for what's to come from Baths.
95
Embarrassingly naked in it's approach to songwriting, empowering and bold in it's execution. The only shame is that Baths will be mostly overlooked by the time the year end lists start pouring out.
FinalLifeline
86
A deeply unhappy record that is bound to make you unhappy along with it, Obsidian is as dark as it's namesake stone. The electronic artist Baths wisely veered toward pop music stylings when constructing this, the follow-up to 2010's left-field Cerulean. Like a blackened Postal Service or James Blake, Obsidian is some of the darkest pop music I've ever heard. Lines like "Are you maybe here to help me hurt myself?" cut the songs to an insidiously sharp point. It stabs ... read more
HalfsourDyl
100
The darkness and sorrow this album contains is a must hear. It's angsty and daringly intimate. One of my personal favs.
Musically, every track on Obsidian is unique and super creative. There's so many cool ideas. Not every one clicked on the first listen or two, but I've grown to love every detail.
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Track List

  1. Worsening
  2. Miasma Sky
  3. Ironworks
  4. Ossuary
  5. Incompatible
  6. No Eyes
  7. Phaedra
  8. No Past Lives
  9. Earth Death
  10. Inter
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Added on: March 6, 2013