For the most part, commentary across the Web is echoing those sentiments: the band is rocking harder, better, faster and stronger now than ever before. Check out our roundup of reviews after the jump.
:: Billboard felt it was a strong, well-rounded effort. “Though content-wise not much has changed, musically they have grown plenty[...] their chops on both guitars and drums have been upped several notches. So has their ability to blend genres: songs swirl with hints of R&B, country, and hard rock on their latest effort, but it’s still as accessible as any of their other albums.”
:: The New York Times argue the band moved “beyond pop-punk without abandoning momentum or the big, catchy chorus.” The paper also highlighted Hayley Williams‘ maturity, saying “Another grown-up side of the album is in Ms. Williams’s vocals, which have taken on subtleties beyond her early brattiness and plaints, and in an emerging sense of humor.”
:: SPIN handed out an 8/10, calling it “an ambitious album by necessity: It’s the test that the band still exists. They do[...] This is their longest album and has the highest stakes, and succeeds.”
:: All Music scored Paramore a 4.5/5, and absolutely raved about the record in the process: “Easily the band’s most adventurous, experimental, and accomplished release to date, Paramore’s fourth studio album[...] is a landmark, a genre-breaking masterwork.”
:: Absolute Punk graded it a healthy 8/10, reveling in the band’s decision to explore “their every sonic whim.” While the reviewer found it could be a bit exhausting, he ultimately concludes, “leave it to Paramore to somehow make an unfocused record endearing in its youthful approach.”
:: For NME, the album notched a 7/10. “Paramore have always been more pop than their fans may like to admit, and this mainstream rebirth feels like a transitional step to something gigantic.”
:: The Brits at The Guardian were the roughest of the bunch, but still handed out a respectable 3/5, saying there are “unremarkable ballads, but there’s also a new willingness to try other genres. The results are mixed.”