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Noonday Dream Image
Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 9 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 31 Ratings

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  • Summary: The third full-length release for the British singer-songwriter was recorded in England and France with Mickey Smith.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. 100
    On Noonday Dream, he expands the Cornish landscape that has impacted his previous work and brings in sounds and instruments that spark the imagination for places further afield, in the most exquisite way.
  2. Jun 5, 2018
    90
    It’s Ben Howard doubling down on ambiance, creating a collage of moments both fleeting and everlasting while choosing the art of the craft over the simplest path to accolades. It may take more time to appreciate, but it’s a masterclass of songwriting that will likely dictate the future direction of his music.
  3. Jun 1, 2018
    80
    His third album is an engrossing, deeply atmospheric trip, helmed by seven-minute monster ‘A Boat To An Island On The Wall’, that serves as a repositioning as well as a new highlight.
  4. Jun 4, 2018
    80
    Noonday Dream can feel ephemeral at times, but never is it unpleasant, even when it's fishing for emotional truth in unstable waters. Introspection rarely feels this inclusive.
  5. Uncut
    Jun 15, 2018
    80
    Each track comes shrouded in glitchy systems noise and Eno-esque ambient drones. The best moments maintain Howard's way with a melody. [Aug 2018, p.28]
  6. Jun 7, 2018
    75
    Complex, surreal and divine. Noonday Dream is Ben Howard's best work to date.
  7. At times, it’s truly gorgeous; but at others: it’s bloody hard work.

See all 9 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 5
  2. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. Jun 5, 2018
    10
    Incredible follow up to I Forget Where We Were, an album that didn't seem possible to top. Yet Ben has somehow managed to come up with a pieceIncredible follow up to I Forget Where We Were, an album that didn't seem possible to top. Yet Ben has somehow managed to come up with a piece of work that builds on his past accomplishments, explores new moods and sonic territories, while at the same time being so uniquely its own. Unlike anything he has done before, and yet Noonday Dream feels like a natural progression from his prior work. An album to get lost in and discover more and more of as the years go by. Expand
  2. Jun 3, 2018
    9
    In Noonday Dream, Ben has built an oasis of ethereal, sprawling soundscapes. Sit back, relax and allow yourself to drift away. It won't be theIn Noonday Dream, Ben has built an oasis of ethereal, sprawling soundscapes. Sit back, relax and allow yourself to drift away. It won't be the sound of your radio summer, but not all music has to be. Expand
  3. Jun 5, 2018
    8
    The man is surely channeling 'World of Echo' Arthur Russell through the vocal chords of Jose Gonzalez, thankfully he's doing a successful jobThe man is surely channeling 'World of Echo' Arthur Russell through the vocal chords of Jose Gonzalez, thankfully he's doing a successful job at it. A grower (as if you needed this spelling out) and wonderfully expansive, this has an addictive ebb and flow to it. One to relax into. Expand
  4. Jun 1, 2018
    7
    It is rich both in instrumentation, vocals and lyrics for the most part but for me it feels too personal to Ben himself, introspective and notIt is rich both in instrumentation, vocals and lyrics for the most part but for me it feels too personal to Ben himself, introspective and not a little downbeat at times. There are some gorgeous moments when you really feel things start to take off but then it returns to a slow burn that takes the shine off.

    Ben is a fantastic musician crafting songs with love and care that mean so much to him. But as a listener though I would love to hear and feel his joy with the world conveyed with an upbeat, less sprawling and complex musical vista.

    I really love his work, but this is not his best.
    Expand
  5. Jun 4, 2018
    6
    This album just isn't for me the instrumentation is spot on but makes it a tough listen as I feel some of the tracks just drag on and are farThis album just isn't for me the instrumentation is spot on but makes it a tough listen as I feel some of the tracks just drag on and are far to ambient. I appricate the feel and the talent that has gone into this album but like I say it just isn't for me which is a shame. Expand