Taking its name from one of the Ten Bulls of Zen, a series of Japanese poems about achieving spiritual enlightenment, Catch Bull at Four spent three weeks at the top of the Billboard album chart. The album’s title and the themes of many of its songs are indicative of Cat’s growing interest in various approaches to spiritual development.
Critics were impressed with the sincerity and directness of the lyrics. There was also praise for the way in which the album built upon the stripped-down sound of the previous two offering by adding more diverse instrumental arrangements, notably including some use of synthesizers. Overall, Catch Bull at Four was seen to be Cat’s most mature album to date.