AOTY 2021
Arca - Arca
Critic Score
Based on 21 reviews
2017 Ratings: #42 / 898
Year End Rank: #29
User Score
2017 Ratings: #75
Liked by 49 people
Sign In to rate and review


The Guardian

With its eerie silences, foreboding chords and hymnal chanting, Arca’s third record really does manage to erect a sonic cathedral around your ears.

Crack Magazine

Transmuting the hopelessly bittersweet suffering and anguish of life into blindsiding art, Arca has crafted the best album of the year so far.


As always, Ghersi pushes his boundaries on Arca, and the vulnerability he displays makes it some of his most exciting and moving music yet.

A.V. Club

Arca sees one of this generation’s most forward-thinking electronic musicians shift the focus from humanity at large to his own worries, with a relatable human openness.


At this point, it is not an exaggeration to suggest that Arca is one of the most vital and consequential voices in electronic music this generation has seen.

Resident Advisor

The symbiotic relationship between Ghersi's voice and his productions is one of Arca's biggest achievements.


The more Alejandro Ghersi gives of himself, the larger his music as Arca grows. His latest feels both intimate and expansive, a connection between his melodic past and a chaotic future.

The Line of Best Fit

On his new self-titled album, Alejandro Ghersi, the sonic visionary behind Arca, fluidly transitions from the adventurous electronic dissonance of his previous work into a somber, refined sound that fuses elegance with emotion.

Consequence of Sound

Though it contains his most serene music by a stretch, Arca is the epitome of that warring nature, reaching for his innermost self to attempt at finding a balance.

Pretty Much Amazing

Give the best pieces here — i.e. the first six tracks — some fair time on good headphones and it’s disturbing in the best and strangest ways: a pitch-black digital blanket for fierce but dying contempt and sorrow.


‘Arca’ is an enthralling marriage of the cyborg swirl of his arrangements and the disarming intimacy of his singing.

Loud and Quiet

The whole effect is something that’s the very opposite of escapist, but rather reflective and deeply personal. ‘Arca’ is an album that’s also a prison – a place where you’re trapped in Ghersi’s compelling, claustrophobic world.


This back-and-forth is carried along throughout Arca, demonstrating that Ghersi hasn't lost his fondness for tempered electronic cacophony (see "Castration" and "Whip"), but has expanded his palette, to mind-bendingly gorgeous results.


Through ‘Arca’, Ghersi guides the listener to contort and cry their way through otherworldly, synthetic dimensions.

Tiny Mix Tapes

Arca presents its artist as an icon and publicly visible figure, no longer obscured or represented by Jesse Kanda’s avatars.

The 405

It’s a challenging but rewarding listen which uncovers itself most rewardingly when given full attention on a dark and melancholic night.

Spectrum Culture

The more Arca consolidates his sound, the more he reveals how much more space he has left to explore.

The Needle Drop
Arca's voice is a welcome addition to his otherworldly production style on his self-titled album, but sadly, many of my reservations about his past full-length efforts still stand.
With the addition of Spanish vocals, Arca's self-titled album is every bit as unsettling as the cover art. Yet it's the beautiful production, gorgeous vocals and emotional themes that, at least in my opinion, stands as her best record to date and a showcase of how unique of an experimental artist she really is.

Fav Tracks: Desafio, Piel, Reverie, Saunter, Anoche, Coraje, Sin Rumbo, Castration, Urchin

Least Fav Track: Whip

O álbum auto-intitulado da cantora e produtora venezuelana Arca, é um álbum bem experimental, porém não me agradou, infelizmente. Ano passado eu havia ouvido seu álbum mais recente Kick I e gostei de algumas músicas, e não gostei de outras; nesse álbum, apenas a faixa "Saunter" me chamou mais a atenção, tem uma boa produção, as faixas "Piel" e "Castration" também ... read more
Ethereal. haunting, emotional. Arca's new album is a huge departure from his previous Mutant. Its slower and feels more serious. But his efforts are not wasted. This is easily one of the best albums this year and is absolutely worth a listen.

Favorite: Piel, Saunter, Castration
Least Favorite: Whip, Fugaces
ʙʟɪᴢᴢᴀʀᴅ ʙᴏɴᴀɴᴢᴀ with @thomaslind

Arca. Musican, Activist, NFT Salesman.

I haven't heard muuuch Arca besides last year's album and I knew people liked this one quite a bit and upon hearing it I must say. "Yep that's exactly what I anticipated."

This album is very slow and it uses it's slowness to pass you through walls of glitchyness and distortion. Lyrics become twisted into spirals of noise. Every sound seems to cave in on itself like a creaky old building ... read more
I think this album's really cool, a very unique, passionate & emotive listen that takes the experimental sounds of Arca's last few albums and translates them to the genre of art-pop pretty effectively. These tracks are personal, intimate and unsettling, the haunting nature of these sparse instrumentals and Arca's tortured singing voice keeps the album engaging. However, the album falls apart a little bit in it's second half, I love tracks 1-6, not a single song there I don't enjoy, but ... read more
Purchasing Arca from Amazon helps support Album of the Year. Or consider a donation?

Added on: February 22, 2017