Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Charlie Burton

  • One Man's Trash: The Charlie Burton Story 1977-1999 [Bulldog, 1999] A-

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One Man's Trash: The Charlie Burton Story 1977-1999 [Bulldog, 1999]
Since the dawn of the Sex Pistols, it's been art-for-art's-sake for this poet of song, whose evocations of succubi, coronary thrombosis, garbage, manners and morals, dead chickens in the middle of the road, and the varieties of romantic disaster have thrilled and enlightened music lovers in university towns cum state capitals from Lincoln, Nebraska, all the way to Austin, Texas. 'Tis oft claimed he can't sing a lick, but this well-culled collection demonstrates that he's learned to croon a slurp, not to mention rock a bite in the ass. And lest anyone whine about perpetual adolescence, he goes out proving how much he's grown in human understanding: "Without my woman," he intones gravely, "I'd be a hopeless sack of shit." A-