UK pressing of the 2007 release from Black Rebel Motorcycle Club features one bonus track: ''The Likes Of You''. BRMC are back with their fourth album! l. Combining the classic songwriting of Howl (2005) with the sleazy Rock N'' Roll of the band''s first two albums Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (2001) and Take Them On, On Your Own (2003), Baby 81 shows the three piece at the top of their game. The album''s first single, `Weapon of Choice'', showcases the album spectacularly with a blistering mix of driving guitars and an anthemic chorus. Universal.
After the surprisingly spare acoustic diversion of 2005''s acclaimed Howl, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club''s fourth album returns the San Francisco group to the big guitars and rock swagger of their earlier albums. Baby 81 is a loud affair, and with each track polished to a high shine (the album was self-produced by the band, co-produced by Michael Been, who formerly led the Call), the results are slick and serviceable rock. BRMC are sometimes accused of rehashing courses charted by earlier bands, and here that tendency occasionally works in their favor ("All You Do Is Talk" opens on an airy organ, recalling U2''s majestic "Where the Streets Have No Name"), but also leads inevitably to comparison (much of Baby 81 evokes Oasis or a T-Rex-lite sound). Here''s hoping BRMC won''t shy away from following their noses down some previously unexplored musical paths in the future. --Ben Heege
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