In the days when hair metal ruled the rock roost, New Zealanders Crowded House made the world safe for graceful, McCartneyesque pop. Their first new album in 14 years, TIME ON EARTH makes it seem as if barely a moment has passed since Neil Finn and company's glory days. The jangling acoustic and electric guitars, elegantly unfurled melodies, and Finn's winsome-but-wise delivery remain untarnished. Some high-profile guests are on hand, including former Smiths axeman Johnny Marr and Dixie Chick Natalie Maines, but they're ultimately frosting on the dream-pop cake. It's not that Crowded House set out to recreate the classic sound of hits like "Don't Dream It's Over," just that it comes as naturally to them as breathing, and feels as relevant to 2007 as it did to 1987.
Spin (p.100) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "TIME ON EARTH is an assured, soothing collection of sweet-tempered pop tunes and ballads."
Entertainment Weekly (p.75) - "Beatlesesque melancholia permeates the record, with singer Neil Finn's reflection on 'English Trees' a typically lugubrious contribution." -- Grade: B
Uncut (p.104) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his taut album possesses the immersive qualities and cumulative impact of a good novel."