Scars (Basement Jaxx album)

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Studio album by Basement Jaxx
Released 21 September 2009
(see release history)
Recorded 2008–2009
Genre House, dance, world music
Length 50:58
Label XL, Ultra, Interscope
Producer Simon Ratcliffe, Felix Buxton
Basement Jaxx chronology
Crazy Itch Radio
Singles from Scars
  1. "Raindrops"
    Released: 22 June 2009
  2. "Feelings Gone"
    Released: 8 September 2009
  3. "My Turn"
    Released: 14 December 2009

Scars is the fifth studio album by British electronic dance music duo Basement Jaxx, released on 21 September 2009.[1] It was preceded by the first single "Raindrops", released on 21 June, while the second single, "Feelings Gone", was also released in the United Kingdom on 21 September. The track "Twerk" features lyrics adapted from Michael Sembello's song "Maniac". The song "Saga" featuring Santigold was also featured in 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.


In an interview, Felix Buxton stated that the album Scars were all the things that the band had been through emotionally and physically. Felix told Rolling Stone Australia they named the album 'Scars' after he was mugged for his bicycle in Brixton, London in 2008. He revealed: "I wasn't badly hurt but it scared me. It's probably one of the scariest moments of my life. Scars are the things that stay with you and that incident definitely gave me one."[2]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Scars" (featuring Kelis, Meleka & Chipmunk) 4:15
2. "Raindrops"   4:10
3. "She's No Good" (featuring Eli "Paperboy" Reed) 3:26
4. "Saga" (featuring Santigold) 2:42
5. "Feelings Gone" (featuring Sam Sparro) 3:42
6. "My Turn" (featuring Lightspeed Champion) 4:52
7. "A Possibility" (featuring Amp Fiddler) 2:45
8. "Twerk" (featuring Yo! Majesty) 3:30
9. "Day of the Sunflowers (We March On)" (featuring Yoko Ono) 5:59
10. "What's a Girl Gotta Do" (featuring Paloma Faith) 4:04
11. "Stay Close" (featuring Lisa Kekaula) 3:01
12. "Distractionz" (featuring Jose Hendrix) 5:03
13. "Gimme Somethin' True" (featuring Jose James) 5:29

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 69/100 [3]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars [4]
Robert Christgau (2-star Honorable Mention) [5]
Pitchfork Media 7.2/10 [6]
The Observer 3/5 stars [7]
Slant Magazine 2.5/5 stars [8]
Spin 7/10 [9]
PopMatters 7/10[10]
Drowned in Sound 7/10[11]
URB 4.5/5 stars[12]
Consequence of Sound 4/5 stars[13]

The album was given a score of 69 out of 100 from Metacritic based on 19 reviews, a much lower score than their first three albums.[3] URB wrote, "if you're wondering what electronic music is missing, look no further: Scars should serve as a reminder (if you needed one) that Basement Jaxx are an essential piece of the puzzle."[14]

Allmusic wrote, "there's nothing here you could write off as true filler, but that perfect flow that made their masterpieces so thrilling is missing", but ended by calling it "a worthwhile throwback to the freak attitude that kicked off their career over a decade earlier."[4] Pitchfork Media gave the album a rating of 7.2 out of 10 and called the album "evidence of true artistic growth", but noted that "[the] successes share space with creative cul-de-sacs and uninsired genre exercises".[6] PopMatters wrote that "though the Jaxx will continue to rack up left-field hits and critical acclaim for years to come, both Scars and Crazy Itch Radio show that the group's innovative streak has come to an end." The website noted that "though they can still produce utterly awe-inspiring tracks now and then (could "Raindrops" been created by anyone else but the Jaxx?), it appears that Basement Jaxx are struggling under the pressure to come up with another stone-cold masterpiece".[10] In his Consumer Guide, Robert Christgau gave the album a two-star honorable mention ((2-star Honorable Mention)) and stated that it's "As good as their cameos as usual, led by Yo Majesty, Yoko, and Ms. Paloma Faith, who is clearly worthy of domestic consumption," while picking out two songs from the album, "Twerk" and "Day of the Sunflowers (We March On)".[15]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2009) Peak
Australian Albums (ARIA)[16] 76
Australian Dance Albums (ARIA)[16] 23
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[17] 41
Belgian Alternative Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[17] 19
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[18] 92
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[19] 84
Irish Albums (IRMA)[20] 89
UK Albums (OCC)[21] 37
UK Dance Albums (OCC)[22] 2
UK Independent Albums (OCC)[23] 5
US Billboard 200[24] 173
US Dance/Electronic Albums (Billboard)[25] 10
US Independent Albums (Billboard)[26] 33
US Top Heatseekers Albums (Billboard)[27] 9

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label
United Kingdom 20 September 2009 (Digital)
21 September 2009 (Physical)
XL Recordings
Australia 20 September 2009 XL Recordings
United States 6 October 2009 Ultra Records
Canada 22 September 2009 Ultra Records


  1. ^ "Scars". Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  2. ^ Jason Treuen. "Basement Jaxx interview". Rolling Stone Australia. Retrieved 2009-10-07. 
  3. ^ a b "Scars Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic". Metacritic. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  4. ^ a b David Jeffries. "Scars - Basement Jaxx". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b Matthew Perpetua (9 October 2009). "Basement Jaxx: Scars". Pitchfork. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  7. ^ "Basement Jaxx: Scars". The Observer. 6 September 2009. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  8. ^ Eric Henderson (3 October 2009). "Basement Jaxx: Scars". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  9. ^ Barry Walters (6 October 2009). "Basement Jaxx, 'Scars' (Ultra/XL)". Spin. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  10. ^ a b Evan Sawdey (21 September 2009). "Basement Jaxx: Scars". PopMatters. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  11. ^ Neil Ashman (25 September 2009). "Basement Jaxx - Scars". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 13 September 2011. 
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Basement Jaxx - Scars". URB. 23 September 2009. Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  15. ^ Robert Christgau. "CG: Basement Jaxx". Retrieved 12 August 2012. 
  16. ^ a b "ARIA Report" (PDF). ARIA Charts. Retrieved 12 September 2014. 
  17. ^ a b "Basement Jaxx – Scars" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  18. ^ "Basement Jaxx – Scars" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  19. ^ "Basement Jaxx – Scars" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  20. ^ "Discography Basement Jaxx". Irish Charts Portal. Hung Medien. Retrieved 12 September 2014. 
  21. ^ "Basement Jaxx | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  22. ^ "2009-10-10 Top 40 Dance Albums Archive". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  23. ^ "2009-10-10 Top 40 Independent Albums Archive | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  24. ^ "Basement Jaxx Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Basement Jaxx. Retrieved 13 September 2011.
  25. ^ "Basement Jaxx Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Dance/Electronic Albums for Basement Jaxx. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  26. ^ "Basement Jaxx Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Independent Albums for Basement Jaxx. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  27. ^ "Basement Jaxx Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Top Heatseekers Albums for Basement Jaxx. Retrieved 12 September 2014.