From the Lions Mouth

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From the Lions Mouth
From the Lions Mouth cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedNovember 1981
StudioRockfield Studios, Monmouthshire, Wales
The Sound chronology
From the Lions Mouth
All Fall Down
Singles from From the Lions Mouth
  1. "Sense of Purpose (What Are We Going to Do)"
    Released: 20 September 1981

From the Lions Mouth [sic] is the second studio album by English post-punk[1] band The Sound, released in November 1981 on record label Korova. Following the release of their previous album Jeopardy, keyboardist Belinda "Bi" Marshall left the group and was replaced by Colvin "Max" Mayers. For their new album, The Sound worked with producer Hugh Jones, as well as co-producing the album themselves. The album's sound was more polished than previous efforts.

Like Jeopardy, From the Lions Mouth was critically acclaimed but failed to capture the attention of the public, with the band's fanbase limited to a cult following. One single, "Sense of Purpose (What Are We Going to Do)", was released.


The album cover artwork was taken from the 1872 painting Daniel in the Lions Den [sic] by Briton Rivière.[2]

NME compared the album's bleak nature to Joy Division's Closer.[3] Despite The Sound being posited as a gloomy band, AllMusic wrote, "snake-charming opener 'Winning' is like a dash of cold water in the faces of all the bands that were wallowing and withering away at the weeping well [...] The Sound were not mopes. They had their problems with life, but rather than just vent or escape from them, they confront them and ask questions and attempt to sort it all out."[1]


One single, "Sense of Purpose (What Are We Going to Do)", was released in promotion for the album, on 20 September 1981. From the Lions Mouth was released in November by record label Korova.

The album was remastered and re-released in 2002 by Renascent, a record label formed specifically for the task of reissuing The Sound's records.[4] This release included the 1982 single "Hothouse", despite frontman Adrian Borland's wishes that the album should have the same track order and listing as the original.[5] The song was not included as a separate track, but as a continuation of "New Dark Age".


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[1]
The Big Takeoververy favourable[6]
Melody Makerfavourable[7]
Record Mirror4/5 stars[9]
Smash Hits5/10[10]
Trouser Pressfavourable[11]
Uncutvery favourable[12]

From the Lions Mouth was well received by critics upon its release. Mike Nicholls of Record Mirror wrote, "The Sound seem set to take up where Joy Division left off and become the saviors of the adolescent grim brigade".[9] Melody Maker's Steve Sutherland commented on the album's lighter, more commercial tone than that of Jeopardy, calling it "Jeopardy-as-palatable-product".[7]

In its retrospective article "Unspun Heroes", NME praised the album as "underrated" and a "ferocious, vital document".[3] Uncut described it as "a monumental work of rock 'n' roll angst" and The Sound's greatest album,[12] while Trouser Press cited it as the group's best work.[11]

Borland described the album as "the most polished and probably our most commercial album, with some of the greatest songs".[5]

Track listing[edit]

Side A
1."Winning"Adrian Borland, Max Mayers, Graham Green, Michael Dudley4:18
2."Sense of Purpose"Borland, Mayers, Green, Dudley3:52
3."Contact the Fact"Borland, Mayers, Green4:21
4."Skeletons"Borland, Benita Biltoo, Green, Dudley3:27
5."Judgement"Borland, Mayers, Green5:03
Side B
1."Fatal Flaw"Borland, Mayers, Green, Dudley4:36
2."Possession"Borland, Adrian Janes3:25
3."The Fire"Borland, Mayers, Green, Dudley2:53
4."Silent Air"Borland4:14
5."New Dark Age"Borland5:49


The Sound
  • Adrian Borland – vocals, guitar, production
  • Michael Dudley – drums, percussion, production
  • Graham Green – bass guitar, production
  • Max Mayers – keyboards, production
  • Hugh Jones – production, engineering
  • Briton Rivière – album cover artwork
  • Howard Hughes – album cover concept
  • Julian Mendelsohn – engineering
  • Simon Fowler – sleeve liner photo photography


  1. ^ a b c Kellman, Andy. "From the Lion's Mouth – The Sound : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards : AllMusic". AllMusic. AllRovi. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  2. ^ "BBC – Your Paintings – Daniel in the Lion's Den". BBC. Retrieved 23 June 2013.
  3. ^ a b Garrett, Jonathan (30 June 2011). "Unspun Heroes – The Sound, 'From the Lions Mouth' – Reviews – – The World's Fastest Music News Service, Music Videos, Interviews, Photos and More". NME. Archived from the original on 10 December 2006. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
  4. ^ "The Sound Microsite". Archived from the original on 26 June 2004. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  5. ^ a b Reeves, Paul Sutton (March 2002). "[The Sound biography]". Record Collector. Archived from the original on 17 February 2012. Retrieved 23 January 2013.
  6. ^ Rabid, Jack (June 2002). "[From the Lions Mouth review]". The Big Takeover (50).
  7. ^ a b Sutherland, Steve (24 October 1981). "[From the Lions Mouth review]". Melody Maker. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  8. ^ Gill, Andy (31 October 1981). "[From the Lions Mouth review]". NME. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  9. ^ a b Nicholls, Mike (21 October 1981). "Sound Roar". Record Mirror. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  10. ^ Cranna, Ian. "Albums". Smash Hits (November 12-25 1981): 25.
  11. ^ a b Lamey, Charles P.; Rabid, Jack; Ferguson, Scott. " :: Sound". Retrieved June 27, 2016.
  12. ^ a b Roberts, Chris. "[From the Lions Mouth review]". Uncut. Archived from the original on 17 February 2012. Retrieved 11 February 2013.

External links[edit]