• Record Label:
  • Release Date:
Golden Hour Image
Metascore
89

Universal acclaim - based on 17 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 291 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: The seventh full-length release for the country singer-songwriter was co-produced with Daniel Tashian and Ian Fitchuk.
Buy On

Top Track

Butterflies
I was just coasting, never really going anywhere Caught up in a web, I was getting kind of use to staying there And out of the blue I fell for... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Mar 29, 2018
    100
    It’s an album that imagines a world in which its author is the mainstream, rather than an influential outlier. It says something about its quality that, by the time it’s finished, that doesn’t seem a fanciful notion at all.
  2. 91
    Musgraves hits one high note after another on Golden Hour; her talent as a songwriter and melody-maker is second to none, and each song is thoughtful, well-formed, and a delightful experience on its own. Together, the tracks on Golden Hour add up to an honest, cohesive musical experience that will linger in your mind and heart long after the final notes have faded.
  3. Mar 31, 2018
    90
    [A] knockout ... In a funny way, the radical optimism of "Golden Hour" feels far more rebellious than any of Musgraves' earlier work.
  4. May 7, 2018
    89
    Throughout, the 29-year-old Lone Star ambassador tucks the hallmarks of her roots--winsome steel guitar, rambling banjo, acoustic guitar--into genre-hopping, the elements present and persistent enough to make the album, at its core, country. Purists will disagree, but if anyone insists on calling this Musgraves' crossover, they must admit this: Golden Hour is a crossover done right.
  5. May 23, 2018
    80
    Golden Hour is a bedazzled, wide-eyed rush.
  6. Mar 28, 2018
    80
    An album this endlessly chill might get boring in a less talented songwriter’s hands, but Musgraves never fails to draw listeners into her reverie.
  7. May 9, 2018
    60
    Whilst tracks like "Butterflies" and "High Horse" offer the best of what Musgraves can do in terms of balancing her obvious charm against a certain steely underbelly that has served her so well so far in her career, all too often, Golden Hour delivers a lackluster vibe and a feeling that Musgraves has become too infatuated with the pop side of her artistry and is beginning to forget about the things that made her so interesting and worth investing in in the first place.

See all 17 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 44 out of 50
  2. Negative: 2 out of 50
  1. Apr 2, 2018
    10
    "Golden Hour" is an extraordinary album on every level. It's a perfect blend of country, pop, and folk. The lyrics are more personal than on"Golden Hour" is an extraordinary album on every level. It's a perfect blend of country, pop, and folk. The lyrics are more personal than on her past albums, and they add a lot of depth to the already wonderful melodies. It's easily the best album of the year so far, and one of the best albums of this entire decade. I'll be shocked if this doesn't win Album of the Year at the Grammys. Expand
  2. Apr 4, 2018
    10
    One of my all time favorite albums and by far my favorite album she has put out. Just as before Kacey Musgraves uses her spectacular voice andOne of my all time favorite albums and by far my favorite album she has put out. Just as before Kacey Musgraves uses her spectacular voice and songwriting skills to put together a beautiful piece of art. Her songs Slow Burn, High Horse, Butterflies, and Space Cowboy are by far my favorites on the album. Expand
  3. May 13, 2018
    10
    It's a crime this album doesn't have a perfect score here. It's, as they call it, an instant classic, if there is such a thing. This albumIt's a crime this album doesn't have a perfect score here. It's, as they call it, an instant classic, if there is such a thing. This album will be viewed in history as one of the all-time greatest albums. It's that good. Expand
  4. Mar 30, 2018
    10
    From her first album i knew she was different and unique artist and now she once again proves why she is the best country artist out there.From her first album i knew she was different and unique artist and now she once again proves why she is the best country artist out there. Golden Hour is bold, real and an ambitious album. Expand
  5. Jun 1, 2018
    9
    Immaculately done, Musgraves slightly departs from the sarcastic wit found on her first two albums, and embraces a slightly more romanticImmaculately done, Musgraves slightly departs from the sarcastic wit found on her first two albums, and embraces a slightly more romantic side. She also mostly leaves behind the country-western feel, with the exceptions of stunners "Oh, What a World," and "Slow Burn," and embraces a more disco-pop approach, highlighted in the standout track "High Horse." Excellently laid out, there are few weaknesses on this album, and I expect Musgraves to be a darling at next year's Grammy Awards, and she may even experience increases in radio play, possibly looking at a pop crossover hit with "High Horse."

    Highs of the album: "Slow Burn"; "Oh, What a World"; "Space Cowboy"; "High Horse"
    Lows of the album: "Golden Hour"; "Mother"
    Expand
  6. Mar 30, 2018
    9
    We all remember the huge stir Kacey Musgraves caused in country music with her first major-label release, "Same Trailer Different Park" backWe all remember the huge stir Kacey Musgraves caused in country music with her first major-label release, "Same Trailer Different Park" back in 2013, a record so timeless that won her her first Grammys and that we sill blast until this day. She was back in 2015 with her sophomore effort, "Pageant Material" which contained even sharper country melodies (Musgraves herself dubbed it "country as **** at one point) and corkier smart lyrics that established her as one of the finest lyricists on the scene, and, at the same time, one of country music's biggest rebels.

    With her third album (fourth, if you count her Christmas album), Kacey announced that she was switching things up a little, and making a record less about rebellion and small-towns, and more about her actual state: being in love, getting married, and focusing on all the beauty laying around.

    The lead-singles were there to assure us that, however changed, Kacey's never gonna make a song that's less than absolutely extra-ordinary: 'Butterflies' is a sweet (and catchy) love song about falling for the man she ended up marrying, while 'Space Cowboy', with all its instrumentation, smart wordplay, and lyrics like "boots weren't made for sitting by the door", is a real tear-jerker.

    So yeah: "Golden Hour" indeed sees Ms. Musgraves taking a different approach in making music: she uses a vocoder on the intro of 'Oh, What a World', which is a grand track about appreciating all the magic in the world, she places a nearly-one-minute-and-a-half track as a sort of ode to her mother five tracks deep into the project, and she goes for a country-infused disco sound on 'High Horse', which turns out to be an absolute success. Pretty unusual things for a Kacey Musgraves album, aren't they?

    However, there are some aspects that are still reminiscent of Musgraves' older works. Album opener 'Slow Burn' feels like it could easily fit into "Pageant Materiel"'s whole narrative, with lyrics such as "Texas is hot, I can be cold / Grandma cried when I pierced my nose", while 'Happy & Sad' sees Kacey reflecting on not enjoying the good times in fear of the lows that will surely follow, because, you know, that's life.

    As a whole body of work, "Golden Hour" is a cohesive, well-written and beautifully-crafted collection of songs that are all at the same time fun, reflective and relatable. Whether it's a little fun song about showing off the man she's in love with ('Velvet Elvis'), or depicting struggles, salvation, and learning to let go ('Rainbow'), Kacey sounds just as confident and as mature even without her deep country roots; and "Golden Hour" proves that it might be, in Kacey Musgraves' career, just what its title suggests it is.
    Expand
  7. Jan 27, 2019
    0
    Kacey sings the same on all tracks, not emotion, no feeling, only autotune voice and a very mediocre bourgeoi soundscape.

See all 50 User Reviews

Related Articles

  1. The Best Albums of 2018

    The Best Albums of 2018 Image
    Published: December 22, 2018
    We reveal the 40 highest-scoring album releases of the year, as well as some of 2018's bests and worsts in other music categories.
  2. Best of 2018: Music Critic Top Ten Lists

    Best of 2018: Music Critic Top Ten Lists Image
    Published: November 26, 2018
    Over the next month, we'll be collecting year-end top 10 album lists from over 200 music critics, publications, record stores, and other sources. Find all of the individual lists and 2018's consensus rankings inside.
  3. The 25 Best Albums of 2018 So Far

    The 25 Best Albums of 2018 So Far Image
    Published: July 3, 2018
    We rank the 25 highest-scoring albums released during the first half of 2018.