Albums to watch

A Hero's Death

Fontaines D.C.

A Hero's Death

Second album from the Dublin-based post-punk quintet produced by Dan Carey (Hot Chip, Franz Ferdinand)

ADM rating[?]


UK Release date
US Release date
  1. 10.0 |   Q

    Rather than succumb to difficult second album syndrome, Fontaines D.C. have emerged frontrunners in an already filed of vital, important young bands. A Hero's Death is a resounding victory. Print edition only

  2. 10.0 |   The Guardian

    The Dublin band deliver a difficult but powerful second album full of songwriting that stares life in the face
    Read Review

  3. 10.0 |   musicOMH

    Shunning a tried-and-tested formula to focus on evolution and experimentation is always a massive risk. But by choosing to embrace their calmer, and often much darker side, the Dubliners could well have given us their masterpiece. Fontaines DC, succumb to difficult second album syndrome? Not a chance
    Read Review

  4. 9.0 |   God Is In The TV

    This album is dark. There is light but it is in the cracks in the blind, the sun breaking through a bank of grey clouds
    Read Review

  5. 9.0 |   Gigwise

    A Hero’s Death is a serious and rare achievement, particularly from a band that could have satisfied everyone with more of the same, and instead chose to evolve
    Read Review

  6. 9.0 |   DIY

    If you thought another rollicking, rabble-rouser was on the cards, it’s time to think again
    Read Review

  7. 9.0 |   XS Noize

    What makes the Fontaines D.C. evolutionary leap so unique is that they could do this by re-joining Dogrel producer Dan Carey in his Streatham studio whilst also ensuring that the essence of the debut remained nurtured and not forgotten
    Read Review

  8. 9.0 |   Clash

    Subversive, non-conformist and melodious, this record has the credentials of a classic rock and roll album
    Read Review

  9. 8.5 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    A Hero’s Death just confirms what we’ve known all along: Fontaines D.C. intend to become one of the greatest rock bands of all time, and they don’t mind doing it the hard way
    Read Review

  10. 8.5 |   Northern Transmissions

    Whether fans take to A Hero’s Death or not, Fontaines D.C. are more than at peace with it. And the band are willing to go down fighting in its defense
    Read Review

  11. 8.1 |   Pitchfork

    Heady, funny, and fearless, the Dublin band’s second album is a maudlin and manic triumph, a horror movie shot as comedy, equal parts future-shocked and handcuffed to history
    Read Review

  12. 8.1 |   Paste Magazine

    The Irish band’s quick follow-up album mines maturity from far darker sounds
    Read Review

  13. 8.0 |   Exclaim

    The propulsive spark that lit their debut lingers, keeping the record from drifting off into malaise. There a certainty to their uncertainty. They embrace ambiguity. Fontaines D.C. might be unsure of what they want, but they damn well know what they don't when they see it
    Read Review

  14. 8.0 |   Evening Standard

    Dissecting the disarray of success
    Read Review

  15. 8.0 |   The Irish Times

    Same band, different songs, same brilliance
    Read Review

  16. 8.0 |   The Arts Desk

    It’s still unmistakably them – all bodacious repetition, lilting brogue
    Read Review

  17. 8.0 |   The Independent

    The Irish band aren’t scared of admitting their own insecurities on this impressive follow-up to their Mercury Prize-shortlisted debut
    Read Review

  18. 8.0 |   Uncut

    Introspective and tightly wound. Print edition only

  19. 8.0 |   Mojo

    It's darker and more complex than their debut, but also bigger-sounding. Print edition only

  20. 8.0 |   NME

    In aiming to examine the self rather than please others, Fontaines D.C. have exerted a knack for writing anthems that are at once self-excoriating and intimately relatable
    Read Review

  21. 7.3 |   Beats Per Minute

    Dogrel showed Fontaines D.C. could make a great post-punk album; A Hero’s Death shows they have more than sub-genre affiliation on their minds
    Read Review

  22. 7.0 |   Rolling Stone

    After turning heads on their debut, Dogrel, last year, the post-punks flirt with psychedelia and echoey guitar while their singer stands his ground
    Read Review

  23. 7.0 |   Loud And Quiet

    Ultimately, A Hero’s Death can be defined by the title track and its definite list of rules for self-prescribed happiness. Though faced by much bloated expectation, its surreal mantra for success is a convincing argument that this is a band hellbent on delivering on the hype, rather than succumbing to it
    Read Review

  24. 7.0 |   All Music

    Although A Hero's Death does suffer from repetition and a lack of literacy, it remains a fun enough; the mistakes it makes won't deter existing fans of the band, although it doesn't display anything new or exciting enough to propel Fontaines D.C. to any new heights
    Read Review

  25. 7.0 |   Under The Radar

    It is missing the stable spine that gave the band’s earlier work such distinctive character, and their repetitious, two-dimensional songs bring the overall package down. Still, when the band is at its best, Fontaines D.C. delivers an irresistible cocktail of post-punk storytelling
    Read Review

  26. 7.0 |   Spectrum Culture

    Moodier than its lauded predecessor, the Dublin punks’ sophomore album is a confident step forward
    Read Review

  27. 7.0 |   The Quietus

    A Hero’s Death forges enough distance from the recent past to reveal what could feasibly be a band on the cusp of earning their well-worn braggadocio
    Read Review

  28. 7.0 |   No Ripcord

    A Hero's Death is not about growth: it's a band assessing where they stand as rising up-and-comers and having the impulse to express themselves differently
    Read Review

  29. 7.0 |   PopMatters

    Fontaines D.C.'s A Hero's Death is the follow-up to the acclaimed Dogrel, and it features some of their best work - alongside some of their most generic
    Read Review

  30. 6.0 |   Upset

    Some singalong moments wouldn’t go amiss
    Read Review

  31. 6.0 |   The FT

    The Dublin band’s tendency towards the propulsive and often somewhat doomy is accentuated on their second album
    Read Review

blog comments powered by Disqus

Watch it

Roll over video for more options

Hear it

Latest Reviews

More reviews