Home Read Classic Album Review: The Alarm | In the Poppy Fields

Classic Album Review: The Alarm | In the Poppy Fields

You can’t fool all of the people all of the time — not with an album like this, anyway.

This came out in 2004 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Give The Alarm points for ingenuity. And irreverence

They knew that nobody was going to care about a comeback album by a bunch of old coots — so they pulled a fast one by issuing their punky, blistering new single 45 R.P.M. under the name The Poppy Fields and hiring a bunch of punks to lip-synch in the video. And gullible Brits fell for it hook, line and sinker, sending the song into the pop charts. You gotta love that.

If only the rest of In The Poppy Fields were as lovable. A few tracks — notably the Who-ish The Drunk And The Disorderly, and the rocking Federal Motor Voter — approach the searing intensity of 45 R.P.M., but most fall victim to the ersatz U2 anthem-rock grandeur that made people dislike The Alarm in the first place. And once they pick up those damned acoustic guitars, you might as well go make a sandwich. Next time, guys, maybe get those punks to write a few songs for you too.