William Patrick Corgan - Ogilala
Critic Score
Based on 11 reviews
2017 Ratings: #466 / 668
User Score
Based on 8 ratings
October 13, 2017 / Release Date
LP / Format
Martha's Music / Label
Your Review


No Ripcord

Ogilala is anything but musically overwrought, and the melodies do keep a haunting quality that elevates his distinct quivering voice. It could never quite redeem Corgan’s complicated public awareness, as he’s equally adored and loathed with great passion, but you still get the impression that it’s the first time in years where he’s truly pursuing his artistic muse without placing any importance on commercial supremacy.

Much of his recent work remains underrated, but by ‘Monuments…’, he was beginning to sound a little short on ideas; happily, the simplicity of ‘Ogilala’ seems as if it’s rejuvenated him.
No matter the setting, Corgan peddles heartfelt prog rock and here, when his songs are shorn of solos and kept at a human scale, his imagination feels immediate and bracing -- and also a natural way for this once angry young man to ease into middle age.
‘Ogilala’ is nothing particularly new or revolutionary for fans, more a strong reminder that there’s a reason why Corgan managed to shift millions of units with his brand of moody rock.
Drowned in Sound

Corgan is always fascinating; as unlikable as he is talented, often the first to sabotage his own success, and the last to admit his mistakes. Whether Ogilala will count as one of them remains to be seen. Like its author it too is both fascinating, brilliant and unlikeable by turns.

Consequence of Sound

His voice has always been idiosyncratic — no one sings like Corgan, not even his imitators — but on Ogilala, he learns to use it as an instrument in its own right.

The 405

Ogilala lives and dies by the strength of its songwriting, and while there’s nothing here that even sniffs at the coattails of Corgan’s best work, it is probably the most consistent and least offensively pretentious album he’s put out in, well, nineteen years.

A.V. Club

No matter what he does to it, that voice is still unmistakably Billy, and while Ogilala gives it some genuine moments of quietly affecting beauty, after 11 beatless tracks laden with burdensome titles (“Amarinthe,” “Antietam,” “Shiloh,” “Half-Life Of An Autodidact”), yet light on memorable melodies or any lyrics that match the frankness of the setting, by album’s end, you long to hear it over a wall of guitars again.

The album really should be more interesting than this, because Billy Corgan, for better or worse, is more interesting than this.
Oct 25, 2017
Full disclosure: The Smashing Pumpkins were my first bona fide musical obsession. I discovered them through my older brother, who had bought a copy of the then fairly recently released Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. I was a mere 11 years old when I first heard it, wet behind ears that had been listening to nothing but Spice Girls, The Lighthouse Family and Texas. It was a beautiful, confounding, terrifying, AWESOME thing. It kicked down a door in my mind. Throughout my teens I amassed ... read more
Oct 15, 2017
Ogilala won't do much to recapture past glory for Corgan, but its the first record in a while that sounds like he just wanted to make something without worrying about its reception. The ambitious concepts and style of his work under The Pumpkins moniker are replaced by simple unadorned and breezy songs. It's refreshing in one sense, but it's a bit flat unfortunately. Here and there he captures some magic with a bit of lyrical genius or a nice arrangement but these eleven songs can sound a bit ... read more
Jan 22, 2018
Thought this would be a disaster but has actually ended up solidifying Billy Corgan's place as one of my heroes. The music really connected with the artwork and I imagine this would be the perfect soundtrack to a trek through the Grand Canyon or something. Lovely minimal production.

▲ Aeronaut, Half-Life of an Autodidact, Antietam, Archer, Mandarynne

▼ Shiloh
Nov 10, 2017
Fuck the critics, fuck you too. The album is impressively good! WTF with your scoring. (BTW I didn' like singles initially too, but listening to the whole album made so much sense)
Oct 14, 2017
Just retire William, please...
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Added on: August 22, 2017