Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Mekons: Natural [Quarterstick, 2007]
This acoustic group-sing had me hedging like a derivatives trader when it came out--until I observed eight humans called Mekons sit around grousing and banging on tour. Dressed like the wraith of a ska boy and dancing like a drunken undertaker, die-hard Londoner Tom Greenhalgh especially made these death songs come alive--not just Tom's dismal opener and Jon Langford's can't-come climax and everybody's desert prophecy, but the animal fables, the mystery history, the agricultural workers' carouse, the unplugged teeter-totter for the digital age. If you don't know much about these 30-year veterans except that they're legendary, this probably isn't where to find out why. If you have any idea what I'm talking about, however, partake. B+