Albums to watch

Big Fish Theory

Vince Staples

Big Fish Theory

Second full-length album from the Long Beach, California rapper with guest appearances from Kendrick Lamar, Damon Albarn, A$AP Rocky, Rick Ross and Justin Vernon

ADM rating[?]


Virgin EMI / Def Jam
UK Release date
US Release date
  1. 10.0 |   NME

    Whatever this is, it’s jaw-dropping. Over to you, Kendrick
    Read Review

  2. 9.4 |   Sputnik Music (staff)

    The most consistent and well-versed rap album of the year
    Read Review

  3. 9.2 |   Earbuddy

    A party jam that’s against parties. It wants the audience to question themselves even as they’re moving to the beat
    Read Review

  4. 9.1 |   Gig Soup

    ‘Big Fish Theory’ is progress via inclusiveness, songs that are as much studies in the perfect crowd-pleaser as they are deliberations on morality and mankind
    Read Review

  5. 9.1 |   A.V. Club

    His second straight classic
    Read Review

  6. 9.1 |   Consequence Of Sound

    One of the best writers and rappers of recent memory
    Read Review

  7. 9.1 |   Pretty Much Amazing

    When it comes to showing off the diverse expanse of Big Fish Theory, no track succeeds as marvelously as “Yeah Right”, the album’s highest and most explosive moment
    Read Review

  8. 9.0 |   Exclaim

    There are plenty of fish in the sea, but not many sound or think the same way Staples does
    Read Review

  9. 9.0 |   Drowned In Sound

    Another huge stride forward for an artist that can only move in giant leaps
    Read Review

  10. 9.0 |   The Quietus

    Hip hop is punk, it’s poetry, but also it’s party music – Big Fish Theory is an outstanding album that potently shows all of these exquisite possibilities
    Read Review

  11. 9.0 |   The Line Of Best Fit

    Vince Staples has now composed an innovative ocean entirely of his own devising, the depths of which we are just now starting to comprehend
    Read Review

  12. 9.0 |   Crack

    Staples’ new sound palette is entirely unique but drawn from familiar sources. Grime, drill and even gqom seem to find a way into the demented swirl of Big Fish Theory, placing it beyond genre
    Read Review

  13. 8.8 |   AU Review

    Not only is the whole album’s musically stylistic choices in accordance with a bigger picture, but the genuine quality of the music provided is going to be hard for any rapper in the game to counter
    Read Review

  14. 8.7 |   Pitchfork

    A collection of sleek club-rap bangers. But his eye for detail and observational skills remain intact
    Read Review

  15. 8.5 |   Prefix

    Big Fish Theory is full of thorny ideas and deep emotion, but the album also plays like a set of catchy-as-hell singles
    Read Review

  16. 8.0 |   Q

    He possesses a talent that already sets him apart. Print edition only

  17. 8.0 |   The FT

    The Californian rapper’s album features chopped-up electronic pop and guest verses from Kendrick Lamar
    Read Review

  18. 8.0 |   Clash

    A record that not only sees Vince taking risks and progressing forward as an artist, but also another astounding example of what hip-hop should and can be in 2017
    Read Review

  19. 8.0 |   The Guardian

    Staples might not own everyone quite yet but Big Fish Theory suggests he’s well on the way
    Read Review

  20. 8.0 |   State

    Takes the listener on a journey quite unlike anything we’ve heard before
    Read Review

  21. 8.0 |   All Music

    Cements Staples' status as one of the most talented and forward-thinking voices in rap in the late 2010s
    Read Review

  22. 8.0 |   The Observer

    It’s a furious and sad party record that you can dance to
    Read Review

  23. 8.0 |   PopMatters

    A powerful and troubling record. It’s an epic in miniature that shows a natural progression from Staples’s previous work
    Read Review

  24. 7.5 |   The 405

    Feels more akin to an in-between; furtive steps in a new direction that will almost doubtlessly be mined even more successfully next go round – assuming our hero doesn't veer in yet another direction. What's sure is, we'll never be bored
    Read Review

  25. 7.0 |   Rolling Stone

    Sure, it's less focused than the reportage of 2015's Summertime '06, but the varying emotions and outlooks mark a full step forward into becoming a multi-layered, genre-crossing, emotion-spilling pop auteur in the vein of West, Drake or Childish Gambino
    Read Review

  26. 6.0 |   The Music

    Switches out menacing rap for creepy club music in a move no one saw coming, but it's unclear just what the message is
    Read Review

blog comments powered by Disqus

Watch it

Roll over video for more options

Hear it

Preview & download it

Vince Staples: Big Fish Theory

  • Download full album for just £9.49
  • 1. Crabs In A Bucket £0.99
  • 2. Big Fish £0.99
  • 3. Alyssa Interlude £0.99
  • 4. Love Can Be... £0.99
  • 5. 745 £0.99
  • 6. Ramona Park Is Yankee Stadium £0.99
  • 7. Yeah Right £0.99
  • 8. Homage £0.99
  • 9. SAMO £0.99
  • 10. Party People £0.99
  • 11. BagBak £0.99
  • 12. Rain Come Down £0.99
  • Service provided by 7Digital

Latest Reviews

More reviews