The Deconstruction

Eels - The Deconstruction
Critic Score
Based on 17 reviews
2018 Ratings: #610 / 759
User Score
Based on 54 ratings
2018 Ratings: #711
April 6, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
E Works / Label
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American Songwriter

Everett covers a lot of sonic territory on The Deconstruction. The album is somewhat of a musical and philosophical rollercoaster. But that’s all in a day’s work for Everett who adds to his already impressive, uncompromising catalog with another expressive, rugged and diverse gem.

The Independent
The optimism of a songwriter who sees the world’s love and beauty through his own sometimes deep pain rarely falters.
The Skinny

Great moments in great songs still seem to be deep enough waters for EELS to swim.

Northern Transmissions
For EELS, upping their unusual production, cinematic tendencies and a unique arrangement of orchestras makes for a powerful sound. Though their writing doesn’t always hit the same highs, it still manages surprise you more often than not.
A.V. Club

If nothing else, The Deconstruction, Mark Oliver Everett’s latest effort as Eels, proves he hasn’t lost his touch for melancholic pop.

Spectrum Culture

Detractors will no doubt find reason to say there’s no great urgency in hearing more of Everett’s middle-aged mope and wry turn-of-phrase, but there’s a certain level of cynicism in turning away from music this thoughtful, deliberate and unpretentious.


The Deconstruction ... is arguably the LA band’s best in two decades. Recorded with producer Mickey Petralia on board for the first time since Electro Shock Blues and featuring an orchestra and choir, it’s a rich, elegantly crafted work that shows E retains his capacity to charm and challenge the listener in equal measure.


Thematically, The Deconstruction doesn't add a great deal of new ideas to the Eels' repertoire (happiness has never been his strong suit), but E's gifts as a songwriter and vocalist are still sharp, and if you've ever been partial to Mark Everett's slightly skewed but engagingly literate outlook on the world, then The Deconstruction should meet with your approval.


Everett has always been loathe to stand in one place for too long so it's quite possible that we'll see yet another side of him in a matter of months. For now, The Deconstruction is a rather rote and lacklustre return.

The 405

The Deconstruction is easily Eels’ best record in over a decade, but still doesn’t really display the kind of ideas that drove people to their music in the first place. Standout tracks, melancholic interludes and stylistic jumpiness add elements of unpredictability to Everett and co. that they’ve sorely missed. But these same things also make it an overarching mess.

Under The Radar

Eels have always shied away from the mainstream, and followed their self-indulgent tendencies. But while The Deconstruction gets off to an energetic start with tracks that rock and inspire, ultimately there's too many tracks that don't rock, so it falls a bit short of what Eels are capable of.

Slant Magazine
Gone is his usual gloomy introspection and trenchant self-awareness, replaced by a surprisingly optimistic tone and the vaguest of personal affirmations.

When given the slightest bit of scrutiny, The Deconstruction produces no eccentricity, pop smarts, orchestral creativity, or emotional revelation. This album comes off like a hustle rather than a noble failure, and that’s what makes it more pernicious than the likes of Boarding House Reach, Man of the Woods, and Virtue: Unlike at least some of those guys, Everett knows exactly what he’s doing.

The Deconstruction - 90
Bone Dry - 70
The Quandary ---
Premonition 80
Rusty Pipes - 90
The Epiphany - 75
Today Is the Day - 25
Sweet Scorched Earth - 60
Coming Back ---
Be Hurt - 45
You Are the Shining Light - 60
There I Said It - 75
Archie Goodnight ---
The Unanswerable - 70
In Our Cathedral - 65

Final thoughts: +0
although eels have an impressive repertoire I haven't listened to any of his songs before the single "The Deconstruction" came out. I instantly fell in love with this ... read more
this is no boring album at all!
Eels never disappoint.
E has done it again. A masterful mixture of songs. His voice is as amazing as ever, with quirky musical arrangements synonymous of albums gone by. I hope there are many, may more albums to come. Love it!
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Year End Lists


Track List

  1. The Deconstruction
  2. Bone Dry
  3. The Quandary
  4. Premonition
  5. Rusty Pipes
  6. The Epiphany
  7. Today Is the Day
  8. Sweet Scorched Earth
  9. Coming Back
  10. Be Hurt
  11. You Are the Shining Light
  12. There I Said It
  13. Archie Goodnight
  14. The Unanswerable
  15. In Our Cathedral
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Added on: January 16, 2018