• Record Label: Red Ink
  • Release Date: May 1, 2007
User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 58 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 58
  2. Negative: 3 out of 58

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  1. J
    May 31, 2007
    5
    This is the BRMC album I wanted before they were even a band. Nevermind the anachronism, this album is kind of embarassing. It feels flat like "Take Them On..." was. That was the sound I always wanted from them and they failed to provide then. Now we are stuck with this uninspired release. 666 Conducer?! What did you expect from a fake British accent? Check it out for the slow bits, a few This is the BRMC album I wanted before they were even a band. Nevermind the anachronism, this album is kind of embarassing. It feels flat like "Take Them On..." was. That was the sound I always wanted from them and they failed to provide then. Now we are stuck with this uninspired release. 666 Conducer?! What did you expect from a fake British accent? Check it out for the slow bits, a few good songs in that respect. Expand
  2. JonathanB
    May 21, 2007
    3
    This is... unfortunate stuff. I've been following the boys from the beginning and it seems like every two albums the band either hits it hard on the head like in their original album and Howl, or they just go all out horrible like their sophomore piece Take Them On On Your Own or this current schleck. What can I say? This is unoriginal compared to Howl. AMG hit it square on the nose. This is... unfortunate stuff. I've been following the boys from the beginning and it seems like every two albums the band either hits it hard on the head like in their original album and Howl, or they just go all out horrible like their sophomore piece Take Them On On Your Own or this current schleck. What can I say? This is unoriginal compared to Howl. AMG hit it square on the nose. Howl was a step in the right direction. Where did they go wrong?! Expand
  3. markt
    May 4, 2007
    9
    Right up there with their debut in my opinion. Im gald they went back to the Rock after Howl. Howl was good...but this is waaaaaay better. Way to go guys.
  4. AnnaB
    May 9, 2007
    9
    Just great! Can't wait til 16 jule to see them in Paradiso Amsterdam.
  5. sk
    May 1, 2007
    10
    no need to worry what happened to your rock n roll as long as we have bands like BRMC. dirty , sexy , cool & sometimes political. a very good album.
  6. JonathanE
    May 1, 2007
    5
    I think this is by far BRMC's weakest effort. They sound like they're treading water here. The Under the Radar review sums it up best "it
  7. NeilL
    May 16, 2007
    10
    Not as good as Howl, their last album, but still pretty darn amazing. I think it's probably their second best album. Not to knock their first two... this band truly rocks. As a note, though, fans of Take them on, On your Own will probably be bigger lovers of this release than the Howl only die-hards.
  8. Dave
    May 22, 2007
    6
    I've listened to this now about half a dozen times, and have to say I am disappointed, especially following up the brilliant "Howl". I didn't expect them to make another one like Howl, but I also didn't expect them to pretty much abandon the blues/rock/gospel styling of Howl altogether. There are some good songs here, but overall they pretty much all sound the same (unlike I've listened to this now about half a dozen times, and have to say I am disappointed, especially following up the brilliant "Howl". I didn't expect them to make another one like Howl, but I also didn't expect them to pretty much abandon the blues/rock/gospel styling of Howl altogether. There are some good songs here, but overall they pretty much all sound the same (unlike the debut CD). Unfortunately, I have to agree with Under the Radar and AMG here. Still plan on seeing them live next month though. Maybe the newer songs will sound better live. Expand
  9. LianeC
    May 2, 2007
    10
    Baby 81 is a strong album with a variety of styles on it. Each song is distinct and combines powerful lyrics with music that ranges from rock to soul.
  10. Joseph
    May 3, 2007
    10
    Come on...it might be their best yet! Every song is great...especially Berlin and Lien on your Dreams. Get this...one of the best albums of this year.
  11. MattD.
    May 9, 2007
    4
    I have to say the All Music Guide review is pretty much correct. They seem to have gone the way of Kings Of Leon with worse results.
  12. SteveH
    Jun 16, 2007
    9
    Excellent, Compelling stuff
  13. kopiekat
    Jun 2, 2007
    9
    If you ever wanted proof rock 'n roll is dead, here's your shot. Oh, don't get me wrong, this album is great. Unfortunately that's -apparently- not true for all the so-called experts (yes, I'm looking at you, AMG, Pitchfork). It would seem that a rock album nowadays has to comply to the rules and go for the great 80s revival. Don't get me wrong, I love Kings If you ever wanted proof rock 'n roll is dead, here's your shot. Oh, don't get me wrong, this album is great. Unfortunately that's -apparently- not true for all the so-called experts (yes, I'm looking at you, AMG, Pitchfork). It would seem that a rock album nowadays has to comply to the rules and go for the great 80s revival. Don't get me wrong, I love Kings of Leon's latest as much as the next guy, but I find it a tad obvious that, as soon as they include some Edge, some dark pumping eighties beat, the critics go panting and raving in extasy. Once again, I love it as much as the next guy, but not every single band has to be like that. BRMC refuse to go with the current and keep their 60's and 70's heritage alive, and for that alone they deserve credit. As for all the other critics here, stating this 'pales to earlier work'... I can't see how you would actually say that if you'd given it a decent listen. This album obviously has a great predecessor in "Howl", but they turn it to good use, and as far as I can hear in this album they definitely fused the earlier BRMC with their bluesy experiment. Anyone saying they just turned back to their first/second album should definitely get a new pair of ears. Whereas their debut had its merits, it was soulless. Sure, it was great rock, but personally I got bored with it in short time. That's where the difference lies. This cd has me picturing a band that enjoys their rock kicks, that puts feeling into their play. I would believe that's on account of "Howl", and I'm all the more happy for it. I hope my little tirade has converted you, and if it hasn't, I can only say one thing: Get your head out of your ass, come out of your ivory tower, and enjoy it while it lasts. This music has you growling, barking and snarling the way only rock and roll does. If we're to follow what the Pitchforks of the world say, rock is doomed indeed. Collapse
  14. ThomasB.
    Jun 8, 2007
    4
    A step back for BRMC, like they were going through the motions. Lacks the disarming emotion of Howl. Bland effort.
  15. adamw
    May 1, 2007
    8
    Good album. I thought they'd combine their blues feel with the noise feel, but they didn't really. Sounds good though, vintage BRMC.
  16. Seeds13
    May 1, 2007
    9
    A very good album from an excellent, edgy rock n roll band. It seems BRMC has figured out there sound and they could keep pumpin it out into a whole other B-sides album. I certainly can't get enough of these guys. Songs like 666 Conducer and Cold Wind make me smile and bob my head as the lyrics and vocals take lead. Berlin is a good beat track. Am I Only and All You Do Is Talk are A very good album from an excellent, edgy rock n roll band. It seems BRMC has figured out there sound and they could keep pumpin it out into a whole other B-sides album. I certainly can't get enough of these guys. Songs like 666 Conducer and Cold Wind make me smile and bob my head as the lyrics and vocals take lead. Berlin is a good beat track. Am I Only and All You Do Is Talk are good chillin songs that seem to stem more from there album Howl. Killing The Light is so good that it feels important to listen to and disect. The rest is a mix of good rock n roll and some with a poppier sound but nonetheless top notch. Near perfect, I debated this album to be a 9 or 10. The more I listen I may be leaning toward 10. Expand
  17. scotta
    May 15, 2007
    8
    The guitar playing is good. I like it very much. The singing part is pretty good also. I stole this album from a best buy, so it was definitely worth the money.
  18. [Anonymous]
    May 16, 2007
    8
    At this point in time it's very difficult to be a fresh rock band, so it might seem easy to label them JAMC rip offs, the music is actually solid and not a single disappoinment can be found in this batch of songs.
  19. dana
    May 17, 2007
    10
    by far their best album, didnt like the old stuff, too slow. but this album is a proper rock album, every track a good one. i love; cold wind, berlin and americanx
  20. Accapella
    May 2, 2007
    9
    The first listens were a bad download version, but on CD the songs really come alive. Definitely up there with BRMC and TTOOYO but a different vibe - nice to see a band grow but still kick ass. Some tracks are headkickers - awesome!
  21. time
    May 3, 2007
    8
    Why do crtics not like this band? They've released 4 brilliant albums in less than a decade. That's more than you can say for most.
  22. tonyc
    May 3, 2007
    6
    A solid rock band who has established themselves as being "cool". This album has a great sound but has no substance. Peter Hayes struggles to write compelling lyrics. Luckily the guitar, bass, and drums still sound good enough not to turn the album off.
  23. alexanderl
    May 30, 2007
    10
    Amazing record. Deceptively simple and at times very complex. Some reviewers have failed to listen to the music. This will be a record that gains an audience with time.
  24. JacobS
    May 4, 2007
    5
    It's a tolerable album. Easily better than most of the stuff released on major labels, but that still doesn't justify giving it anything higher than a five. Their weakest effort. After Howl and Howl Sessions, I expect more out of this band.
  25. mikes.
    May 8, 2007
    7
    Well I'd have to disagree with amg's review of this album, i think the polished production works in their favor and they have matured with their songwriting now that their not directly copying the rolling stones. Their most interesting and experimental effort and their songwriting is great guilty pleasure listening. Sleazy, trashy, and more fun than their other albums, this is Well I'd have to disagree with amg's review of this album, i think the polished production works in their favor and they have matured with their songwriting now that their not directly copying the rolling stones. Their most interesting and experimental effort and their songwriting is great guilty pleasure listening. Sleazy, trashy, and more fun than their other albums, this is their best release. Expand
  26. pedroe
    May 8, 2007
    9
    they are back to doing what they do best, Rude Rock!
  27. brandenb
    May 8, 2007
    10
    definitely a 10. anything that stays on my player lon ger than a day deserves a 10. this record is in fact, still in there and gets better with every listen. you guys that don't like it are just overgrown gerbils.
  28. Cruq
    Jun 27, 2007
    10
    I don't really understand why lot of those "great critics" rated this album so low. It's different than Howl, it sounds pretty much like another band's record. But it fucking kicks ass! It's real, heavy and dark rock'n'roll performed with massive amount of emotions. Critics (hello Pitchfork and NME) say that lyrics are dumb. Oh, they're not. Maybe BRMC I don't really understand why lot of those "great critics" rated this album so low. It's different than Howl, it sounds pretty much like another band's record. But it fucking kicks ass! It's real, heavy and dark rock'n'roll performed with massive amount of emotions. Critics (hello Pitchfork and NME) say that lyrics are dumb. Oh, they're not. Maybe BRMC doesn't use very sophisticated volcaburary, but songs tell about important things and suit the music damn great. It is one of the best records in recent years, and BRMC's best for sure. Just give it a chance and I bet you'll love it. Expand
  29. JustinS.
    Jun 6, 2007
    7
    Take a Pitchfork review for what it is worth which is about as much as a 200 year old dead guys impression on a newly released album.
  30. JoeT.
    Jun 7, 2007
    8
    Recommended to those whose who loved the promise in the debut, and were turned off by contrived two that followed. The sophomore-album-that-should-have-been. Welcome back from marketing department hell.
  31. PaulF
    Jul 16, 2007
    10
    Wow, I thought BRMC's earlier albums were amazing - this totally blows them out of the water. Absolutely fantastic!
  32. AfrofromAbove1979
    Jul 27, 2007
    10
    Glorious Glorious Glorious!!! My favourite of 2007... American X: a masterpiece of 9:11 minutes... Baby 81: a masterpiece of 60:26 minutes... BRMC: a masterpiece forever.
  33. jo
    May 11, 2007
    9
    Great return to rock 'n roll, I loved Howl, but this i slightly better though still not as good as their 2nd effort Take Them, On Your Own... I just can't understand why a band like this don't get the airplmay they deserve... there songs are always huge... Need Some Air, Berlin, weapon Of Choice, Am I Only and Cold Wind can compete with BRMC's best tunes any time!
  34. Ben
    May 15, 2007
    8
    It seems like the easiest way to put down this band and their music is to criticize their image - as with the latest Pitchfork review. Every rock band is trying to look cool. Fans tend to divide into two camps, those who liked Howl and those who prefer the louder sound. The latter will definitely enjoy this album.
  35. SteveB
    May 26, 2007
    9
    Anyone who claims to enjoy BRMC should adore this cd. It's full of great crunchy, dirty rock songs like the ones we all fell in love with at the start. I really didn't like Howl but I just can't get enough Baby 81! AMG are way wrong with this one...
  36. May 14, 2011
    9
    not as original as the debut.. somthing got lost in the shoegaze sense of the band... but not everything has to be original to be good. if the songs are strong enough and the production is solid. your on the right track
Metascore
71

Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. Baby 81 still contains a decent collection of songs, it’s just that not only do most of them not stand out from the band’s previous work, they also pale in comparison. [#17, p.82]
  2. 80
    BRMC seem invincible; or back to their searing best, at any rate. [May 2007, p.87]
  3. The songwriting isn’t BRMC’s most memorable, but Baby 81’s noise-roots fumes are pretty thick.