Albums to watch

So Beautiful Or So What

Paul Simon

So Beautiful Or So What

12th studio album and first for five years from the veteran singer-songwriter

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  1. 10.0 |   State

    He has crafted his most vital, most complete album in 25 years
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  2. 10.0 |   Daily Telegraph

    A rich, surprising and ultimately satisfying stew of Simon’s folk, rock and pop influences from all over the world
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  3. 10.0 |   Independent on Sunday

    The album contains at least half a dozen songs that are as simple and profound as anything Simon has ever written
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  4. 10.0 |   The Irish Times

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  5. 9.1 |   A.V. Club

    Another periodic dispatch from a musician who hasn’t run out of clever, catchy ways to describe the world in which he lives
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  6. 9.0 |   PopMatters

    It is a complete classic: a great album in which to lose yourself
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  7. 8.5 |   BBC

    A profound statement from a master of his craft
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  8. 8.0 |   Mojo

    A deeply spiritual record, its more reflective moments offset by playful fare. Print edition only

  9. 8.0 |   The Guardian

    Simon's openness and spirit of inquiry ensure that this album is never the work of a man slouched in complacency
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  10. 8.0 |   The Observer

    Simon's first album in five years, So Beautiful or so What, examines the big issues with a lightness of touch, both in his lyrics and musical approach
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  11. 8.0 |   No Ripcord

    While it’s not strong enough to top the pleasures of his best records, it’s also occasionally deeper and more profound than just about anything else he has done
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  12. 8.0 |   Rave Magazine

    He’s still making adventurous and vital music
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  13. 8.0 |   Rolling Stone

    Old-fashioned in its brevity (10 songs, 38 minutes) and vivid in its storytelling
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  14. 8.0 |   Uncut

    As ever, Simon's work is a strange mix of easy and uneasy listening - it's balm, but it leaves an itch
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  15. 8.0 |   Evening Standard

    Songs such as the title track and Love & Blessings reveal frisky life in quite an old dog
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  16. 8.0 |   DIY

    Simon’s purest and most consistent effort since the early 90s
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  17. 6.7 |   Pitchfork

    Simon comes across as much more at ease and compelling in this familiar setting. He's like a novelist revisiting the particulars of his youth
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  18. 6.0 |   Q

    A refreshingly upbeat counterpoint to 2006's opaque, Brian-Eno assisted Surprise. Print edition only

  19. 6.0 |   music OMH

    Although the songs here will always be found wanting when compared with Simon's great allusive narratives, there is still plenty to enjoy
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  20. 6.0 |   The Digital Fix

    Unlikely to win over a new audience but long term fans will no doubt be happy enough with the pleasant, if slightly underwhelming, offering
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  21. 6.0 |   The Scotsman

    An effortlessly executed yet thought-provoking ride
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  22. 6.0 |   The Quietus

    Modest, tuneful ruminations
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  23. 6.0 |   The Independent

    The results sound like generic Simon... but too many of his ruminations, using the album's own dichotomy, leave one thinking, "So what?"
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Paul Simon: So Beautiful Or So What

  • Download full album for just £8.49
  • 1. Getting Ready For Christmas Day £0.99
  • 2. The Afterlife £0.99
  • 3. Dazzling Blue £0.99
  • 4. Rewrite £0.99
  • 5. Love And Hard Times £0.99
  • 6. Love Is Eternal Sacred Light £0.99
  • 7. Amulet £0.99
  • 8. Questions For The Angels £0.99
  • 9. Love And Blessings £0.99
  • 10. So Beautiful Or So What £0.99
  • 11. Peace Like A River (Live) £0.99
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