Back to Bedlam

Common Sense Media says

Emotional ballads with a few four-letter words.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

Anti-war message from a former soldier.


Anti-violence message.


Some ethereal sexual innuendo; nothing explicit.


One or two gratuitous four-letter words.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

A couple of references to being high.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there are a couple of four-letter words and a few references to being high. Otherwise, there's not much to worry about.

Parents say

Kids say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

His falsetto warble sounds a little odd, and he's all-ballad, all-the-time, but there's something magical and intriguing about James Blunt's debut CD, BACK TO BEDLAM. A former British soldier who traded in his gun for a guitar, Blunt has been storming the English pop charts, and is now gunning for popularity in the U.S. as well. He takes a poetic but strong anti-war stance on songs like \"No Bravery\" (\"There are children standing here/Arms outstretched into the sky/Tears drying on their face/He has been here/Brothers lie in shallow graves/Fathers lost without a trace/A nation blind to their disgrace/Since he's been here\"), inspired by his time stationed in Kosovo and Bosnia.

Is it any good?


These are songs that kind of sneak under your skin, and get you when you're not looking. Mostly about the angst of imperfect love, they showcase the artist's unusual voice with spare arrangements heavy on acoustic guitar. The production and vocals are so sincere and sweet that it's positively jarring to hear an occasional four-letter word in the lyrics. Still, teens and adults will have fun losing themselves in James Blunt's visual and evocative lyrics.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the artist's interesting career path, from soldier to pop singer.

Music details

Artist:James Blunt
Release date:October 4, 2005
Genre:Alternative Rock
Parental advisory:Yes
Edited version available:No

This review of Back to Bedlam was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Adult Written byhatewhatisbad April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age

Very Beautiful indeed, except for 1 thing...l!!

I looked forward to getting this CD since i first heard "your Beautiful" on the radio. I got it and was enjoying it but was shocked when i heard"....she could it in my face that i was f-----g high..." Thats was the only disappointment...such a beautiful song and he had to go mess it up with such a nasty, ugly word :( All the other songs on it are great. I especially find it touching that he has changed his view on war. Thumbs up James!
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age


Okay this would've have been the perfect CD. I got this CD yesterday for my birthday and I was listening to "You're Beautiful" and then i heard, "F-----g high" When in the radio edit it is "flying high" It would have been a lot better without the swears. James Blunt, why did you ruin a perfect song?
Teen, 14 years old Written bypinklady80lately April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age


umm, idk, its a very odd album, actually my mom bought it and b/c of her ignorance she didnt really understand some of the songs that were talking about him getting high! until my brother told her. idk, its a good album, but hes not a very good influence, seriously he gets high and hes always spotted partying w/ playmates!


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?
Thanks – we appreciate your feedback!


What are the different ways that you access Common Sense Media ratings and information? (Check all that apply)

Essential Apps Guide