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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A muddled triumph
Having read all the negative reviews about 'Down In Albion' I decided with some trepidation to give the Babyshambles album a go anyway. I had really enjoyed their singles Killamangiro and ---- Forever and thought 'what the hell!'
Well i'm glad to report back that the album is no where near the disaster that other reviewers have suggested, in fact its a little gem and...
Published on 14 Mar 2006 by R. Harper

versus
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Up and down ...
Its hard to review this first full relase from Babyshambles. There are some fantastic tracks which show what a great artist Pete Doherty could be. Stand out tracks F__ Forever, Albion and Killamanjiro are excellent and shopw what a song writer he is, but unfortunately there is also a lot of filler and for me the album just does not work as a whole. Still a great...
Published on 5 Dec 2005 by Amazon Customer


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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A muddled triumph, 14 Mar 2006
By 
R. Harper - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
Having read all the negative reviews about 'Down In Albion' I decided with some trepidation to give the Babyshambles album a go anyway. I had really enjoyed their singles Killamangiro and ---- Forever and thought 'what the hell!'
Well i'm glad to report back that the album is no where near the disaster that other reviewers have suggested, in fact its a little gem and with a little tweaking it could have been a classic. By this I mean a couple of songs could have been shaved off such as Pentonville to give the album a bit more momentum and focus. Whilst the single versions of Killamangiro and ---- Forever should have been retained. That said Pete Doherty's talent is plain to see, the guy can write songs and there's a lot of strong tracks on here; The 32 Of December, Pipedown, Albion and Loyalty Song just some of them.
All in all this album has really grown on me, it is messy and raw but that's a refreshing change from a lot of over produced music thats around. There are lots of moments of inspiration that warrant this being part of your album collection.
One can only hope Doherty cleans himself up and manages to reach his full potentional as a brilliant musician.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kinsale revisited, 13 Nov 2005
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
Many years ago, I spent my summers in a place called Kinsale in Co. Cork. In those days we had a record player and a small bunch of records which we played until the stylus ploughed its way through to the other side. Bob Dylan, The Kinks, The Beatles, James Taylor, The Peddlers The Stones and sundry others.
"If music be the food of love, play on!", said the Bard. Well, all that (Kinsale stuff) happened to me when I was younger than the youngest member of Babyshambles. I heard the Album in Tenerife (I live there now because Kinsale is too bloody expensive and my youth is too difficult to get hold of and Drew's brother presented me with a copy). That bunch (Babyshambles) are good. They are bloody good. Why? Because they have dragged my past into the present with a mixture of the stuff I love from 30 odd years ago, wrapped up in a modern-day package. "Steeped in tradition" (La Belle et la Bete) is about gin? Lovely! Tradition, surely, includes Batman and all that went with "Dinner, Dinner, Dinner, Dinner".
I reckon the guys are playing with us.
Who can say that "The 32nd of December" is not a serious reminder of "Pretty Flamingo"? (Remember Personfred Personn?)
The "Pentonville" thing is out of context, but is magic. A lot better than the infamous "Revolution No. 9" on a rather well known double album from when I was young.
I am getting old now. I am not capable of crowd surfing and all that stuff. But I do remember my halcyon days, when Jagger and Burdon were the "Bad Boys" and Rock stars were permanently on the brink of popping their clogs. Down In Albion brings it all back, albeit in a shambolic sort of way. Jesus, just listen.
The trick is to listen.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars simply superb, 19 Nov 2005
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
bravo babyshambles. this is a blisteringly raw, honest album overloaded with charm. it guarantees the shambles a slew of fans and in no way alienates libertines fans. enjoy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a grower, 5 Jan 2006
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
I first listened to this album on nme.com and thought it was alright but i decided to buy it and give it a go and im glad i did because it is very good, even pentonville which at first couldn't stand, seems to work well and it shows the diversity of the legend that is super pete. Anyway the first 13 songs are really good but the last 3 arent that good but are still very listenable, give it a go and prove everyone that thinks pete doherty is a useless junkie wrong, he's a genius and one of them doesn't come along often, he should be embraced.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heard the promo album - its a blinder, 23 Oct 2005
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
I am fortunate enough to borrow a promo copy of this album from an associate of mine, and I have to say it is very impressive.
Different and Suprising - the only way to describe this album. Being a Libertines fan from the start, I quickly turned to the babyshambles after their split. The babyshambles, although they have had their ups and downs are a band of quality and excellence, and this album prooves their worth.
The opening track is an unusual mix of sounds and lyrics, quite different from the rest of the album. A mixture of different beats, fast and slow, a repeating "batman theme" style tune runs through the song. One other suprise on this track is the female voice which kicks in after a couple of minutes - kate moss? Track two f*** Forever - brilliant! a previous release from the babyshambles. Following that A'rebours is ok quite difficult to understand, and my least favourite track on the album. From the least favourite track comes the best track, the 32nd of December. An amazing song in Libertines style, surely will be a future single release. A bright, loud and lyriclly dark track - Stunning. A great blend of catchy riffs and instrumentals. Pipedown and sticks and stones are the next tracks, both very good in their own right. Sticks and stones is totally different from what I have ever heard. In a reggae style tune, only pete dohertys familiar voice links this with the band!. Other superb songs on the album include Killamangiro, completlly revampt to the single version on the album and down in albion, the forthcoming single, the best track to date. Overall, absolutlly fantastic, both lyriclly and musiclly. A sure hit and comes highly reccommended.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic. After a few listens., 19 Nov 2005
By 
Mr. D. J. Harper "djhworld" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
Just recently purchased this album, and if I was to be entirely honest with a prospective buyer, it's only average on your first listen. The album begins to shine when you give it a few hours through your speakers.
Now I'm totally in love with it, it's surprising, fresh, interesting and most of all inciteful. Kate Moss adds her input throughout the first track, although I couldn't recognise it was her at first, I thought it was just Pete singing slightly higher then usual.
Still, well worth getting if you're a Pete/Libertines fan, it'll sit nicely next to the legendary album Up The Bracket.
Highly anticipated, it won't live up to the hype on your first few listens, it's when the real intimacy of the music comes through when you can see a real gem of a band.
It's a shame this will probably be Petes last addition to the music library, I wouldn't be surprised if he passes away in the near future, living a life around crack will catch up eventually.
Well worth it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid British album, 14 Nov 2005
By 
S. Miller (Manchester) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
Here it is after much anticipation. They mighty Babyshambles release the eagerly awaited 'Down In Albion'.
So many influences spread across it, it is a truly great album and even though there are probably a couple of songs they could've really left off (the new version of 'Killamangiro' is pointless as is the disappointing patchwork-quilt of 'What Katy Did Next') for me, it's one of the highlights of the year, which has seen drab Coldplay and Keane taking all the plaudits.
Highlights are '32nd of December', 'Albion', 'In Love With A Feeling', '8 Dead Boys' and 'A'Rebours'.
BUY IT - it'll banish any misconceptions you had of the Doherty boy being all smack, crack and no pop!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not The Shambles You Were Led To Believe, 15 Jan 2006
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
Every once in a while over the past few decades has come a rock star that's clearly talented but yet has a kamikaze lifestyle that seems to be more intriguing than the average band going out there. Example being Sid Vicious, Johnny Thunders and Keith Moon led lifestyles that whilst weren't inspirational, they changed the picture of music forever and became icons in their own rights.

Although it may be wrong to put Pete Doherty in the same context as these `punk' legends, there's a feeling his lifestyle will soon become one of legendary status. The press coverage over the past years has certainly thrown his personal life into turmoil and what makes it a shame is the fact as a musician he's amazingly skilled, but yet cause of his personal issues, he's looked at people as nothing more than a drug addict.

Babyshambles' debut album `Down in Albion', was released this time last year to extremely criticising reviews from many music publications, claiming it to be the nail on Doherty's own personal coffin, but those who actually attempt to listen to this album will notice a genius is at work here.

Grittier and heavier than The Libertines, `Down in Albion' is sixteen tracks of heavy riffs, acoustic ballads, sing-a-long tunes and great poetic work. Produced by Mick Jones, the Clash's guitarist creates this sound that feels unedited and more genuine than most albums that were released that year. Lead single Killamangiro hinted at the old Libertines sound, and the follow-up F*ck Forever became one of the nation's biggest songs reaching the top 5.

Everything from the `scrapbook' lyric booklet, the shoddy front and back covers gives the impression of a band not looking for mass attention but just wanting to create some good songs and good songs they do create. Opening with `La Belle Et La BÍte', the group come with this simple catchy tune wrapped around a duet between one of biggest couple's in Doherty and Kate Moss, which surprisingly works considering most celebrities are clearly no good in this field. `A'rebors', `Sticks and Stones' and `Pentonville' specifically have strong reggae influence that gives a nice relaxed feeling throughout whilst songs like `What Katy Did Next', `In Love With A Feeling' and `Loyalty Song' are some of the catchiest on the album.

Of course the biggest rock songs on `Down in Albion' have to got to be `Pipedown' and `8 Dead Boys', there's no reason why they are, but you'll soon realise why they are so damn good. By the time the album ends on the anthem sounds of `Up The Morning' and the bittersweet `Merry Go-Round', there's no denying that Doherty deserves more credit than he gets.

If all goes well, hopefully Doherty will release that next record and maybe he'll regain everything that he lost through all his addictions. Clearly not as bad as many people would make you believe, give it a try.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's a shambles, baby, and i'd be a fool to resist!, 27 July 2007
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
This is not like the Libertines stuff, i think it's far better.If you're more into purely Libertines-style songs then go for Dirty Pretty Things. Down In Albion has such a mix of different styles of songs: hard and fast, acoustic rumbling, love songs, with sloppy guitars, mumbles and screams, muttering, Kate Moss singing, chants, wails,even the sounds of cups of tea being made.
16 songs, most of which are over three mins, a lot are over four mins.
I bought this over a year ago and it stayed in my player for months.
If you like romantic notions of great Albion: streets, railway stations, gutters and bus stops, if you like bands like The Smiths, and if you like libertinesque songs it does have some, plus raw, mean punk riffs, plus jangley guitars and crooning, get it.
This is excellent melodies, lyrics, music, proving these boys in the band have definately got it. A briliant first album from this band.
A perfect shambles.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not The Libertines, But Not Far Off, 21 April 2006
This review is from: Down in Albion (Audio CD)
This album IS top quality, and unfortunately I think the bad reviews are down to numerous comparisons with The Libertines. The sad truth is The Libertines could, and never will be bettered or replaced.

For that very reason, I think it is unfair to critisize Babyshambles work. This album is quite raw but contains some beautiful music and even some lyrical genius from Ms(Kate)Moss.

I'd say that the highlights include 'A'Rebours', 'Albion' and 'Back From The Dead' although they are quite soft,gentle songs. In terms of heavier songs 'F**k Forever' and 'Kilamangiro' deserve a mention, but the other songs on the album are fantastic as well. There us even a sequel, 'What Katie Did Next' which takes a couple of listens, but is excellent. However, it could never match the original.

I think Pete has done a good job with 'The Shambles' and I hope he will continue to write superb songs.

Please don't dismiss this album because of his negative press, and don't expect The Libertines, but it is not far off.

I strongly suggest you buy this album ASAP, and watch out for Dirty Pretty Things.
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