Music for the Long Emergency

POLIÇA / s t a r g a z e - Music for the Long Emergency
Critic Score
Based on 18 reviews
2018 Ratings: #484 / 831
User Score
Based on 50 ratings
2018 Ratings: #574
February 16, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Totally Gross National Product, Transgressive / Label
Chamber Pop, Art Pop / Genres
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A.V. Club

There’s a strange but rewarding matching of talents that takes place on Music For The Long Emergency. Much as electronic pop act Poliça and European orchestral collective Stargaze have collaborated to create a record that sounds little like their other respective recordings, so too does the content have a strange bifurcated nature that nevertheless works as a greater whole.

The Line of Best Fit

Music for the Long Emergency perfectly encapsulates the confusion and anxiety haemorrhaging from our society on both a personal and political level.

Loud and Quiet
The depth of arrangement that the orchestra offers is more than complementary to Poliça’s songwriting, producing an overall result that’s something of a career highlight for all concerned.
The s t a r g a z e contributions are for the most part interwoven so neatly that it’s hard to identify where Poliça ends and they begin.
Poliça have broken new ground and consolidated old strengths with this laudable step outside of their comfort zone.
The Telegraph
As protest music goes, it is not particularly uplifting. Yet despair is kept at bay by the sheer majesty of the lush, dense, beautifully sculpted, wonderfully alien sound.
Spectrum Culture

Music for the Long Emergency lyrically and sonically animates feelings of political rebellion and solidarity, but it also poignantly maps how geopolitical turmoil reshapes human desires for and experiences of intimacy.

Under The Radar

This is Music For the Long Emergency, an emergency that will not be going away any time soon and should be fought with, and wrestled with, over sombre synths and disturbing undulations. When a musical response to a politically lost society feels so appropriate, it is a wonder how anyone is listening to album after album of perfect cadences at all.

Drowned in Sound

Whatever looming shadow might darken your homeland, Music for the Long Emergency offers a substantive retreat, with enough room for minds to rest and wander in peace.


Even if it's not always as coherent as Poliça and s t a r g a z e's own albums, Music for the Long Emergency's experiments balance ambition and emotion in admirable ways.

Recorded with Berlin-based chamber orchestra s t a r g a z e, their sound is simultaneously laid bare and enriched by its cinematic qualities.

For all the anxious rhetoric of its literary namesake, Emergency flourishes when it avoids aggression.

The Skinny

While there are some interesting elements to Music For the Long Emergency, and there are aspects of both POLIÇA and s t a r g a z e's music that work well together, the album is generally quite confused and lacking in any real excitement.

The 405
Though it definitely has its moments and manages to grapple with the horror of modernity there’s a split keeping this from feeling quite as cohesive as it should. Listen to Poliça. Listen to s t a r g a z e. Neither are quite as powerful when they’re together as when they’re apart.
God Is in the TV

I found this album impressively experimental, and at times magical and elevating. Yet it is also experientially challenging and at times I wanted it to stop. But I guess that’s just like life – and Music For The Long Emergency is an album about life.


Though challenging and, in its best moments, quite exciting, Music for the Long Emergency ultimately resembles a first draft. Its most compelling ideas are knotted up with its worst, and the whole thing could use a thorough edit.

It's not like this collab was destined to fail, but Music for the Long Emergency is painfully inconsistent: kitchy twee-pop moments (Fake Like, Agree) followed by experimental noise (Marrow, Cursed); two uncompelling 10-minute ambient tracks to round off; and shallow lyrics with a wanna-be political undertone throughout. What a mess!
This album could have been something very special, and a seriously revitalization to POLIÇA's music. There are seemingly endless moments on here that these two artists are really great and creating very dense atmospheres, filled with very dark and futuristic vibes. But there are just as many moments on this one that just get on my nerves. The production is an absolute mess, with the mixing on a half of these tracks coming off as demo quality. But I feel like the biggest flaw of this ... read more

Fav track: Agree, if any

Least fav track: How is this happening
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Year End Lists

/Esquire (UK)

Track List

  1. Fake Like
  2. Marrow
  3. Speaking of Ghost
  4. Agree
  5. Cursed
  6. How Is This Happening
  7. Music for the Long Emergency
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Added on: November 8, 2017