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on 1 January 2015
Five stars, best album ever
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on 22 May 2012
When Johnny left last April I was sad to hear it. I had enjoyed Ryan and Johnny's 'duel guitaring' immensely on Ignore The Ignorant. Still, the possibility of the next album being a heavier, raw LP excited me. I began to worry though, that perhaps Johnny's departure would put an end to the sophisticated style that had made ITI so enjoyable for me. Boy was I wrong.

The album starts with feedback, then boom! Glitters Like Gold begins with the kind of bombastic energy that could make J Mascis blush, a grunge epic of a tune with a regretful Gary singing of spending his 'splendor long ago'. Lead single Come On, Be A No-One follows with Ryan's haunting voice and guitar. One only has to compare Ryan now to how he looked just 2 years ago to see that it has not been an easy time. This song and the next, Jaded Youth really emphasise that being 'lost and found, loved and lost' may have drained him but these songs are his strongest yet.

Anna, Confident Men and Uptight showcase Gary's knack of writing fabulous pop hooks whilst Ross shines with some really impressive drumming. Chi-Town (as far as I'm aware, the only of the first 10 songs to feature Steve Albini's production rather than Dave Fridmann) is an exemplary return to the punky harshness that won The Cribs their fanbase with the first 3 records. Pure O is a lesson in how to decorate a song to perfection. Back To The Bolthole, with the subject matter dealing with the realisation of death, is a strangely uplifting song that you can expect to be a fistpumping slowdance for the crowd at gigs. File it under: EPIC. We are then brought to I Should Have Helped. Possibly The Cribs at their most delicate. Fingerpicked guitars and gently played strings compliment Gary's voice nicely. Had the album ended here I would have been satisfied.

It doesn't end there however, and thank goodness. The last four tracks, self-produced by the band at Abbey Road, are a medley that makes one 12 minute stunner. Kicking off with Stalagmites, a winding track with military drums that ends with a reprise of the 'lost and found' section of Jaded Youth, leading in to Like A Gift Giver. This song is the shortest on the album but is a melodically brilliant. Then Butterflies, which floats as pleasantly as the title suggests, with Ryan making guitar noises that Johnny Marr himself would be proud of. Gary sings wonderful words of lost times with a friend that I think everyone can relate to as Ross revisits the military drums from Stalagmites to lead in to Arena Rock Encore With Full Cast. It really is as massive as the title suggests. The words 'Sorry that it's taken years, we were victims of our own ideals, but I'd rather be tied to myself than to anyone else.' sum this album and the band up perfectly; Independent, strong, but most of all thoughtful. And as Ryan's squealing guitar, Gary's booming bass and Ross's crashing drums fade to nothing you can't help but think if this band ever needed Johnny Marr, they don't anymore. Their best effort yet 9/10.
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on 6 March 2013
Shouty punk rock with catchy pop riffs and choruses is what the Cribs do best, and on this album they do it better than ever before. Their DIY ethic shines through on the album's very organic production, the Cribs have always been at their peak when playing live, so the mostly live recording of this album makes it the best example of what makes the Cribs great and what they are about. Their lyrics are great on this album, honest and punchy yet cryptic and intriguing all at once. The band was influenced on this record not only by their usual post-punk idols like Sonic Youth, but also by big stadium bands with big experimental ideas, namely Queen. The marriage of these two styles makes In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull an essential chapter in the evolution of noise rock. All in all it's by far the most accomplished and cohesive record the Jarman brothers have made to date, this is their Magnum Opus and should be a must-hear for any fan. Sounds great on CD, MP3 and Vinyl.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 26 September 2012
.....DOTH IN MUSIC LIE." (John Milton) This quote sums up the bedrock of the new Cribs offering "In The Belly Of The Bull" namely an overwhelming desire to listen to and enjoy the contrast between the melodic softening underbelly layered upon which is a more stringent driving rhythmic veneer.

Going since the early 2000's, this, but as yet not receiving the critical acclaim that is richly deserved, outfit from Wakefield make very good music, the keynotes of which are the high pitched and catchy guitar riffs and as good as vocalizations as you'll find anywhere.

It gets off to a brilliant start with "Glitters Like Gold", and is followed by the cacophonous, punchy "Come On, Be A No-One" which has a gut-busting bawly chorus. A riff filled few minutes is to be had with "Chi-Town", and "Back To The Bolthole", is another standout, providing 5 minutes of boisterous noise which pushes the boundaries of The Cribs previous musical ambitions. However, my album favorite is "Arena Rock Encore With Full Cast" during which I had to physically control the urge to turn off the room lights, illuminate my mobile phone and two handedly wave it above my head whilst swaying in time with this well crafted, melodious anthemic blockbuster.

This is the bands 5th album and demonstrates that their work has not suffered from the departure of the brilliant but brief stint of Johnny Marr. "In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull" (where did that title come from I wonder" is an impressive album and posts a clear message that The Cribs are determined to become Number One UK guitar band.
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on 17 July 2012
Gawd I love The Cribs. I was smitten when I first heard You Were Always The One on an NME cd, then I bought Men's Needs, Women's Needs... Whatever and worked backwards from there. Ignore The Ignorant was very possibly my favourite album of 2009 with Johnny and Ryan's amazingly intelligent guitar melodies working along with gut punchingly poignant lyrics ('you are far more likely to be devoured than empoured by your own sense of romance')and passionate performances from all (sadly lacking in much of today's music).
In The Belly Of The Brazen Bull is a heavier and yet more subtle suite of songs. On first listen to me it all sounded a bit flat, then certain hooks crept under my skin and now I can't believe how indifferent I was. The amazing opener Glitters Like Gold is a contender for best Cribs song ever and has the power to worm into your brain and nest there like a comfortable if slightly scruffy kitten. Keep going through the album though and you will be rewarded with many beautiful treats! Pure O is a torrent of lushness, Chi Town will make you want to pogo and the closing segue of songs feature Ryan's prettiest guitar lines.

I can't overstate how great this album is.
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on 21 September 2012
The album is sincere, thoughtful, angst-ridden, passionate, and poetic. The scraggly, experimental bits at the end are my favourites. There is an honesty in their music that is paired with real technical skill and that's a rare combination. Some very genuine artists are not talented musicians. Some very talented musicians create artificial music. The Cribs are the real thing. I hope they stay around for a few more decades.
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on 30 July 2014
The cribs are amazing, one of England's best cult indie bands. It's a shame they don't get enough recognition for what they have do.

This album is awesome if you haven't got it, get it!!!!
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on 10 January 2015
This is one of the best albums that you will ever listen to. The highlights are 'Glitters Like Gold' 'Come On Be A No One' and 'Anna'. The best thing to ever come out of Wakefield!
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on 17 February 2013
I was very pleased with how quickly this album arrived (especially when it was expected much later). The C.D. is excellent quality and recommended to everyone. Very pleased.
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on 8 July 2012
I came into this with high hopes. I have listened to this a few times and it starts off fantastically, However by track 7 it sags and the album segues into a sludge. Not as sharp songwriting or melodies as Man's needs, which is still their high point. For me it is a 3 star effort
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