Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Manfred Mann's Earth Band: Nightingales and Bombers [Warner Bros., 1975]
Space doodlers at their worst, these guys bristle with intellectual energy at their best, setting the self-conscious funkiness of songwriters like Dr. John and Randy Newman in a formalistic, futuristic rock context. This time Bruce Springsteen and Joan Armatrading get the treatment, and the result is a surprisingly songful album, their most gratifying in two or three years. Just in time for Mick Rogers to take his guitar and go home. Guess he prefers doodling. B+