Lions - The Black Crowes

Mixed or average reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 15
  2. Negative: 3 out of 15
  1. When the Crowes stumble into the right place, they soar. Indeed, at its best, their sixth album delivers the same streamlined pleasures that the group rediscovered on 1999's By Your Side.
  2. The heart of Lions lies in the best ballads the band has ever waxed, such as the Led Zeppelin III-esque "Soul Singing" and the churning "Losing My Mind."
  3. 'Lions' is widdle-smothered great-grandadrock shite that Hendrix could whack off in ten minutes today, despite being dead. Pumped full of funk-rawk formaldehyde to stop the choruses dropping off, it boasts all the originality of a cloned baked bean and about as many tunes as a tractor makes trying to get out of a ditch.
  4. With Lions, the band has dropped its biggest dud, a moribund disaster with no more than a tiny handful of salvageable songs.
  5. Chris Robinson and crew get artier with their arrangements, but sacrifice the lived-in feel of previous work. [11 May 2001, p.81]
  6. 40
    The line between this credible Faces-cum-Skynyrd jam band's best and worst material remains slimmer than even their most ardent fanatic might hope. [Jun/Jul 2001, p.105]
  7. Lions is indeed a truer expression of the Crowes' potential: adventurous songwriting ensconced in a blues- and funk-inspired swagger.
  8. There's precious little of the extravagant muso twiddling and indulgent nonsense that has waylaid the band sometimes in the past.
  9. 80
    Their latest, Lions, gets back to basics without going backward; the brothers Robinson are still ripping off the classics, sure, but they've expanded the history lesson from the Small Faces and Humble Pie to sharpening the attack with Zeppelinesque tricks and modern rock energy.
  10. Where the Robinson boys once seemed perpetually stuck in the butt-skankin', Faces-meets-Sticky Fingers pit, Lions draws more on communal southern boogie rock--slightly less on doofus monster guitar riffs. Not that Lions signals any reinvention, the Black Crowes are just masters at resaddling their one-trick pony.
  11. Lions has got style to spare, but ends up light on meaty hooks.
  12. With the exception of 1999's By Your Side, which showed flashes of the band's original brilliance, in recent years the songwriting of brothers Chris and Rich Robinson has deteriorated into a muddled mess of hard rock cliches. Lions is the low point of that decline.
  13. While Lions roars with all of the classic rock bombast and Stones-y swagger we've come to expect from the Crowes, the album is sorely lacking in the magic that can only be achieved when the innately talented drive themselves to distraction in the pursuit of perfection. [May/June 2001, p.110]
  14. Deeply original? No. A rollicking, sing-along good time? Yes.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 39 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. AxeS.
    Mar 4, 2008
    The Crowes continue their foray into alternative rock (three snakes part II). 'greasy grass river', 'losin my mind', and 'cosmic friend' rank among the band's best songs. the whole album has a psychedelic feel, due in part to the post-post modern album artwork. like most Crowes albums, though, there are a couple of clunkers on lions. Full Review »
  2. KenI
    May 3, 2007
    Great album. More hard Rock than other Crowe's albums.
  3. tracey
    Jan 16, 2007
    the fact that the Real listeners have rated it higher than the critics says it all!another classic,all i can say is WOW!i can't stop listening to it. Full Review »