‘It’s not a grower, it’s just rubbish’ – 11 straight-talking Amazon reviewers crush 2016’s most critically-lauded albums

How good actually are the most critically acclaimed albums of 2016? Not much cop at all, according to some of the peer reviewers of Amazon, who see the critical consensus and laugh. Here are 11 highlights:

  1. David Bowie’s ‘Blackstar’

We said: “‘Blackstar’ was an album of secrets, clues and riddles, and a fitting last transmission from the now-ascended master.”
Anonymous’ 1-star review said: “I listened to this before he died and thought it was awful. And I haven’t changed my mind now that he is dead.”

  1. Angel Olsen’s ‘My Woman’

We said: “She thrashed her way through the guttural power pop of ‘Shut Up Kiss Me’, before getting to grips with psychedelic glam-rock, epic Fleetwood Mac style outpourings, ‘60s girl group sass and cosmic soul, all laced with her stunning, totally unique vocal.”
V. Rivera‘s 1-star review said: “Thought it was the wrong c.d. If you like her early stuff, don’t buy this! Straight to the charity shop.”

  1. Drake’s ‘Views’

We said: “Drake’s fourth full-length was yet again about how tough it is being him, but done via the medium of total ruddy bangers
Rosy‘s 1-star review said: “It was basically him talking not even rapping about his depressing life. It sounds like someone recorded him coming round from anesthesia, can’t believe I’ve wasted my money on this piece of droning crap.”

  1. Radiohead’s ‘A Moon Shaped Pool’

We said: “Radiohead were more relaxed and human than we’d ever seen them before.”
Paul‘s 1-star review said: “Stop experimenting and get back to making good music. Or just call it s day? The worst ! I have listened to this album at least 50 times , it’s not a grower, it’s just rubbish.”

  1. Christine And The Queens’ ‘Chaleur Humaine’

We said: “Sophisticated and sensitive, packed full of cool pansexual-pop with a heart as big as its hooks. It took on the big topics of 2016 – queer identity and gender politics – with grace and class.”
Kev‘s 3-star review said: “Great voice, not too keen on song lyrics.”

  1. The 1975’s ‘I Like It When You Sleep…’

We said: “A fascinating reflection of their frontman Matt Healy’s outsized, often contrarian, personality: egomaniacal but introverted, populist but unapologetically pretentious, insecure but hungry for attention.”
Cheesemaster‘s 1-star review said: “It’s all crap, this is no different, to me it sounds like one direction -utter s***”

  1. Rihanna’s ‘Anti’

We said: “There were bangers – ‘Work’ and ‘Kiss It Better’ for starters – but this was also a chance for her to let her freak flag fly, with low-key, spacious R&B, and moody, psychedelic funk.”
Peter‘s 1-star review said: “I really don’t want to be rude and judge Rihanna, but I’m sorry I don’t get this album concept. Nor do i understand why she felt the need to release and album like this? Maybe this is what she was feeling at the time in her creative artist career to express herself in this way! But sorry loves it don’t work for me, even though I am a big fan, but good luck with this release anyway…., I’m sure someone will really love it!”

  1. Bon Iver’s ‘22, A Million’

We said: “’22, A Million’ saw Vernon experimenting like never before, weaving in glitchy electronics, extreme vocodered vocals and Stevie Nicks samples into an all-American patchwork of sweet sounds. It was Americana still, but not as we previously knew it. A gorgeous, gorgeous thing.”
Anonymous‘ 1-star review said: “This sounds like he got a vocal effects toy for Christmas and has spent Boxing Day playing with it.”

  1. Ariana Grande’s ‘Dangerous Woman’

We said: “Even if most of it was co-written, the modish message of empowerment felt honest coming from Grande. By the time the sublime closer ‘I Don’t Care’ comes around, it was genuinely satisfying to hear her put that sentiment on record so resoundingly.”
2 stars from Julian: “I don’t hv time to let songs grow on me. They need to appeal to me instantly & most on this album didn’t warrant another listen!”

  1. Diiv’s ‘Is The Is Are’

We said: “This was the sound of a hugely promising young band course-correcting away from implosion; here’s hoping DIIV can stay the course.”
Rui‘s 3-star review: “ok”

  1. Lady Gaga’s ‘Joanne’

We said: “Gaga’s diva impulses were given free reign on tracks like ‘Perfect Illusion’ and ‘Come to Mama’, but it was ‘Joanne’’s quieter, more introspective moments that hit hardest and lingered longest.”
lili‘s 1-star review: “I like rock and pop, and this is neither. The predominant style is difficult to identify as it sounds a bit country, a bit folk, a bit weird… but also dated and not at all catchy… ‘Perfect Illusion’ is by far the best song and since I don’t like it, that tells a lot about the rest. Clearly an experiment, but one that I regret.”