Overpowered - Critical Reception

Critical Reception

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 82/100
Review scores
Source Rating
BBC Music very favourable
Drowned in Sound 6/10
NME 6/10
The Observer
Pitchfork Media 8.0/10
Stylus Magazine B+
The Sunday Times

Overpowered received general acclaim from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalised rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 82, based on 12 reviews, which indicates "universal acclaim". The Observer's Garry Mulholland gave the album five out of five stars, lauding it as "a sumptuous 11-track, all-killer-no-filler, electro-disco gem" that "sees Murphy striving to get rid of her Big Hit Albatross." He continued, "Inspired by the Eighties proto-house of D Train, Mantronix and Gwen Guthrie, but often sounding a dead-ringer for Yazoo, early Eurythmics and rave-era dance-popsters Electribe 101, Overpowered's bubbling, sensual, and soulful glitterball gems effortlessly tap into the perennial glory of feeling lost and lonely at the disco at the end of the world." Allmusic editor Heather Phares gave the album four-and-a-half out of five stars, calling it "ptly enough for such a pop-focused album" and wrote that "nearly every song on Overpowered sounds like a potential smash hit. Even if this album is a bid for the big time, it's done with such flair that it just underscores what a confident and unique artist Murphy really is." Ben Urdang of musicOMH cited Overpowered as Murphy's "most coherent album yet", noting that her songwriting "appears to be stronger than ever with a consistent style and sound emerging throughout." Stephen Trouss of Pitchfork Media scored the album eight out of ten and commented, "In a year of low-stakes disappointment for European pop, Overpowered is a triumph." BBC Music's Sonja D'Cruze concluded, "From start to finish Roisin fronts an inventive, unpredictable record. Overpowered spits glitter with every song and could go a long way to bringing back a disco chic revival."

Jax Spike of About.com described the album as "pretty overpowering itself, containing solid electropop music with plenty of funky flavor and some really wild beats, with her smooth voice exuding confidence despite any moments of breathiness." The Sunday Times critic Mark Edwards, giving the album three out of five stars, opined that "he music on Overpowered plays down her quirky (all right, difficult) side in favour of a melange of disco/house styles from 1975 to 1989. It lacks the glam wit of Goldfrapp or the cheekiness of Kylie, but it's brisk and efficient." The NME rated the album six out of ten, referring to it as "a thoroughly modern pop album that will best appeal to ageing clubbers." Cpt H.M. 'Howling Mad' Murdock of Drowned in Sound felt that "ot once does Overpowered really drag its feet, but it never truly impacts with the might one could possibly expect from an artist with such a fine pedigree. It's a solid pop album, one wonderfully in tune with today's stylistic shifts and trends." Emily Mackay of Yahoo! Music expressed that on Overpowered, Murphy "melded the two sides of her history much more seamlessly; four-to-the-floor pop belters mix with touches of electronic and lyrical darkness to make one of the pop albums of the year." Stylus Magazine's Dan MacRae graded the album B+ and believed that "Overpowered knows how to squeech and squelch in the proper places, while touches of cowbell, beatboxery, and the occasional Prince styled riff all get sprinkled in accordingly." Lauren Murphy of entertainment.ie was not impressed, writing that "this is an album that sticks rigidly to a tried-and-tested formula, rarely colouring outside the lines or deviating from the disco/house vibe", but noted that "there are some fantastically uplifting dance-pop tunes here, all launched forth with the effortless vigour that Murphy does so well."

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