The Worse Things Get ...

Neko Case - The Worse Things Get ...
Critic Score
Based on 26 reviews
2013 Ratings: #85 / 955
Year End Rank: #27
User Score
Based on 78 ratings
2013 Ratings: #74
September 3, 2013 / Release Date
LP / Format
ANTI- / Label
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www.nekocase.com / Website
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
AllMusic

It's some of her most instantly gratifying work as well, perfectly encapsulating all of her personas, from the erudite, whiskey-shooting provocateur to the sweet and soulful, small town crooner who sounds like she was plucked from the pages of a novel set in the antebellum north.

90
No Ripcord

On this, her latest and most emotionally charged album, she's managed to create a painful outpouring of honesty, one that strikes that coveted balance of both melodic and lyrical expression; her message is equally powerful from each direction.

82
Pitchfork

Somehow, The Worse Things Get is Case’s tightest record and also her strangest. With its off-kilter arrangements and eccentric turns of phrase, it’s a world unto itself.

80
The Line of Best Fit

For Case, this is likely a cathartic effort; it’s improbable this path will be revisited, unless more tragedy befalls her, but it’s a tremendous listen and a wonderful demonstration of her talents nonetheless.

80
Under The Radar

While Harder doesn't suggest giving up this fight to be heard, it encourages the listener to think about the fight in a different way—by accepting shortcomings, recognizing the narrowness of socially-constructed paths, and starting to rise above it all. 

80
NME

Proving herself to still be one of the most authoritative voices in the alt.country firmament, Neko Case’s sixth album is typically sumptuous and lusciously heart-rending. 

80
Paste

It’s a record that often elevates the listener through its integrity and intensity, and sometimes grates through its failure to find the right music to express its complex lyrical sentiments.

80
Spin

Her voice is a bear hug in the literal sense; succumbing to it is like being carjacked by Patsy Cline.

80
PopMatters

One advantage of Case being “peaceful and strange” and generally unique is that she can release an album like this and most listeners won’t bat an eye. Only about half of The Worse Things Get really sounds like anything she’s done before under her own name.

75
Pretty Much Amazing

Wwhile the subsequent inconsistency may hold The Worse Things Get back from greatness, it does make it honest, and when it comes to art I’ll take honesty over consistency any day. 

70
Consequence of Sound

It’s wholly solipsistic. By nature, the listener is alienated, as we tend to care most about the songs we can relate to. But The Worse Things Get isn’t about us or even for us. These 40 minutes belong to Neko Case. It’s her cleansing.

50
A.V. Club

She’s settled into the safety of contemporary indie-folk, giving The Worse Things Get… the same kind of innocuous sound as radio-friendly groups like The Civil Wars and Of Monsters And Men.

hellodecatur
93
This was my personal AOTY for 2013, which may have been partly influenced by it being my first true exposure to Neko Case, and THAT voice. There's this timbre to Case's singing that's so commanding but sweet. The way she attacks the notes is striking, and some songs here wouldn't have left much of an impression in the hands of a less-capable singer.

But holy hell this thing is hook-y, even as many songs forego traditional verse-chorus structures. "I'm From Nowhere" cycles through ... read more
WildChameleon
85
The Worse Things Get and Hell-On are the most personal album of Neko Case but this one is more consistent and more immediate.
CheapandLethal
65
Better stuff out there
Felindie
80
Fav Tracks: Man, Ragtime, Bracing for Sunday
joewindlebrox
56
The first half of the album is amazing but it starts to die out fairly quickly after it.
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MISC LISTS

#2/Immaculate Noise

Track List

  1. Wild Creatures
  2. Night Still Comes
  3. Man
  4. I'm From Nowhere
  5. Bracing for Sunday
  6. Nearly Midnight, Honolulu
  7. Calling Cards
  8. City Swans
  9. Afraid
  10. Local Girl
  11. Where Did I Leave That Fire
  12. Ragtime
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Added on: June 11, 2013