AOTY 2019

All Nerve

The Breeders - All Nerve
Critic Score
Based on 23 reviews
2018 Ratings: #170 / 736
User Score
Based on 124 ratings
2018 Ratings: #692
March 2, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
4AD / Label
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Drowned in Sound

As its title suggests All Nerve is never a passive listen, it shifts you, touches a nerve, and leaves a timely mark. Ah, The Breeders, an irreverent comfort; a band for the ages.


All Nerve possesses all of the mysterious tones of Title TK, and the execution is by the same group of musicians that enjoyed mainstream success with the multiple single-spawning Last Splash. One could call it the best of both worlds, but under Kim Deal's guiding vision, it's all one world. This album is another confident step into that world.


The ’90s were cool, but that was then. This is now, and The Breeders are sounding just as vital now (and cool, whatever that might mean) as they did when Last Splash made a splash.

God Is in the TV
Sure, it may have been ten years, but it’s another success. It’s a reminder of why The Breeders are so highly rated, and holds its own against their previous albums and EPs. It’s an album you want to play again before it’s even finished, before revisiting their other albums.

It’s no surprise that All Nerve, the first new Breeders album in a decade, sounds—predictably, gloriously—like The Breeders.

A.V. Club

On the whole, All Nerve is a strong, clear-eyed return for Dayton, Ohio’s ’90s alt-rock icons.

The Line of Best Fit

All Nerve won’t please anybody looking for the reckless abandon of old, but surely nobody who ever loved this band will be in that frame of mind. Instead, they’ll be ushering these old favourites in from the cold with warmth and empathy.

The Skinny

All Nerve shrugs off any burden of a ‘come-back’ and becomes a truly rare thing: a wild, visionary, timeless rock album.

The Independent

While The Breeders may not be reclaiming their youth on their latest effort, they’re not trying to: they approach All Nerve with the sensibility of a band that embraces how they’ve grown since their early punk days.

The Guardian

For an album full of space and silence, it’s remarkably relentless and weighty – maybe not the stuff of arena-packing success after all, but formidable enough that, while it plays, what ifs seem beside the point.


All Nerve lives up to its name: the Breeders' one-of-a-kind toughness and vulnerability are the heart of their music, and that it's still beating strong is cause for celebration.

Rolling Stone
On the fifth Breeders album, the songs are all cinematic movement – hiding, escaping, screaming in the meadow, running for the exit.
Northern Transmissions

Reuniting the lineup behind the band’s opus Last Splash, the band’s new record has blistering highs, tender lows, and a spitfire pace that ensures things stay interesting throughout. It’s a triumph from a band that still has something to prove.

In never once looking back they’ve re-captured the incessant energy that drove ‘Last Splash’, and given us something to take its place.
Consequence of Sound

All Nerve finds The Breeders sounding more ecstatic and less restrained than anytime since Last Splash originally soaked the alt-rock scene.


The Breeders’ new album features their iconic Last Splash lineup. It is smoothly confident with many moments of bliss, even as the lyrics evoke isolation, frustration, and scuzz.

Loud and Quiet

The Breeders are pleasing themselves first, and fans second, and to witness such spontaneity still in practice – 28 years on from their debut – makes ‘All Nerve’ worth the wait.

Under The Radar

It's a twisted, swirling record of gorgeous harmony set against catapulting rhythms and just the right balance of body-horror lyricism that stands firmly on its' own.


While the results don't match the highest highs of that '90s classic, they certainly live up the band's legacy of consistency in terms of quality, if not quantity.

Tiny Mix Tapes

Caveats aside, All Nerve is a fresh reminder that Kim Deal is still a fount of inspiration and should keep it going, be it with The Breeders or otherwise.

Spectrum Culture
The album reunites the group, but doesn’t dwell in the past. The Breeders mix a variety of styles into this disc while still sounding utterly like the Breeders, a feat that’s as surprising as it is welcome.
No Ripcord

All Nerve is not in the same league as Last Splash, but it is an exhibition of a band with alarmingly strong musical chemistry making relevant music - and enjoying doing so - a quarter of a century on from their most notable landmark.


While it may flag a bit in its latter moments though, ‘All Nerve’ still has moments where the magic of this particular, iconic incarnation of The Breeders feels recaptured.

The Breeders are a band that are pretty legendary at this point. All Nerve is more of the same I suppose. Kim Deals voice is just as great and so is her bass playing but this album sounds like it's stuck in the 90's. Nothing here really stands out and all the tracks just sound like generic 90's alt rock. There is no central idea nor cohesion and it just feels uninspired almost like All Nerve exists for the sake of existing. On a technical level the album doesn't sound bad but not interesting ... read more
it feels either relaxed or tired, not sure which, but at least this is a better record than Mountain Battles.
Alt-rock legends The Breeders have failed to impress me since Last Splash, and All Nerve is no different. Not particularly good, not particularly bad, just somewhat toothless and unexciting. In all honesty, I'd just rather listen to The Amps.
its good
not good
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Track List

  1. Nervous Mary
  2. Wait in the Car
  3. All Nerve
  4. MetaGoth
  5. Spacewoman
  6. Walking with a Killer
  7. Howl at the Summit
  8. Archangel's Thunderbird
  9. Dawn: Making an Effort
  10. Skinhead #2
  11. Blues at the Acropolis
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Added on: January 9, 2018