Lions

After tours with Jimmy Page in 1999 and 2000 that yielded a live album of Led Zeppelin classics (Live at the Greek), the Black Crowes return with their sixth studio album and first V2 set, Lions.

After tours with Jimmy Page in 1999 and 2000 that yielded a live album of Led Zeppelin classics (Live at the Greek), the Black Crowes return with their sixth studio album and first V2 set, Lions. Hardcore fans who felt that 1999's By Your Side fell short of the intensity and passion of earlier efforts, such as The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion and Amorica, will surely find much to admire about Lions. Tracked mostly by founding members (vocalist Chris Robinson, guitarist Rich Robinson, and drummer Steve Gorman) in a former Yiddish theater on New York's Lower East Side, Lions is indeed a truer expression of the Crowes' potential: adventurous songwriting ensconced in a blues- and funk-inspired swagger. Tracks like the feedback-laden "Midnight From the Inside Out," the wistful "Miracle to Me," the funk-fueled "Ozone Mama," and the tough, staccato-laced "Lickin' " rank among the band's best work.—CW