""Lights Out On The Playground" is more proof that Baton Rouge should have been a bigger success than they were. This follow-up to "Shake Your Soul" is not a carbon copy but rather a continuation of the excellence Baton Rouge established on their debut album. It has a more mature (experienced, if you prefer) feel to it and the songs all sound as if they are coming from a well-established super group with a string of gold albums to their credit.
You know you are in for some serious rock `n' roll when Baton Rouge launches into the opening cut, "Slave To The Rhythm" but it is the slower songs on this disc that I really appreciate. The vocal performances by Kelly Keeling on "Desperate" and "Hotter Than Hell" never fail to get my full attention. Both are slower paced but whereas "Desperate" has that soulful, yearning feel "Hotter Than Hell" is a slow-burning blues number that leaves me wanting more. I'm sure that it is no coincidence that "Hotter Than Hell" just happens to be the 12th and final song on this 50 minute disc.
It is difficult to choose any one song as the best of the bunch because "Lights Out On The Playground" has plenty of quality tracks to pick from. So, to borrow (loosely) from the lyrics of "Vampire Kiss", don't be surprised if "Lights Out On The Playground" "makes you electric", "sets you on fire", "rattles your bones" as it "takes you wire to wire". "
20 Minutes of brilliance...
Beandog | Clinton, IA | 07/08/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Baton Rouge should have been HUGE; I was around when they came out and I couldn't believe they weren't big. The songs are well written - think Bon Jovi with more balls. Great hooks, melody and sing along choruses - Kelly Keeling sings his guts out on this album and Shake Your Soul. Lance Bulen is a solid, not flashy, player. Lights Out On The Playground has 20 minutes of some of the best hard rock/metal you will hear. Desperate, Tokyo Time, Vampire Kiss, The Midge II and The Price Of Love are all fabulous rock n roll. These songs hit every thing great about rock in the 80's/Early 90's. If you like anything about music in this era - BUY THIS! This album doesn't bring anything new to the table - it simply ROCKS."
Even better than their debut!
Justin Gaines | Northern Virginia | 05/07/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Released in 1991, Baton Rouge's second album Lights Out on the Playground is another in a long list of albums that deserved far more attention that it received at the time.
Coming at a time when the charts were dominated by Bon Jovi, Warrant, Steelheart, Slaughter, Damn Yankees and the like, Lights Out on the Playground should have been Baton Rouge's big break. It certainly had all of the right elements. It was a very melodic hard rock album with a definite blues flavor; it featured a dynamic vocalist in Kelly Keeling, and it boasted behind-the-scenes support by former Surgin' mainman Jack Ponti, whose songwriting skills were among the best in the business. His song "Desperate" is one of the best metal ballads ever written, and I'm still perplexed as to how neither Baton Rouge nor Babylon A.D could make a hit of it.
Lights Out on the Playground may not have reached a wide audience, but it was still a terrific hard rock album. It may seem dated now, but for those of us who grew up with this kind of "hair metal", this is the kind of music that gets the blood pumping. If you're already a Baton Rouge fan, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't heard Baton Rouge yet, but are a fan of the late 80's and early 90's hard rock sound, you'll definitely want to check out Lights Out on the Playground.
NOTE: Wounded Bird reissued Lights Out on the Playground in 2008. Like all Wounded Bird reissues, it has not been digitally remastered, nor does it have any bonus material. It's great to see this forgotten album back in print, but if you already own the 1991 version there's no need to replace it. "
Why is everything that I want so hard to find?
Vader | 02/03/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I would like to know why everything that I want is so hard to find- Firehouse, Poison, Warrant, Slaughter, Baton Rouge, Vain, XYZ, Mitch Malloy, Del Amitri and Bulletboys- these are some of the artists that are hard to find.
Lights out on the playground is a great album and worth buying- but I won't buy it used. I'd sooner buy it brand new and for the retail price of $16.99.