Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

Consumer Guide:
  User's Guide
  Grades 1990-
  Grades 1969-89
  And It Don't Stop
  Book Reports
  Is It Still Good to Ya?
  Going Into the City
  Consumer Guide: 90s
  Grown Up All Wrong
  Consumer Guide: 80s
  Consumer Guide: 70s
  Any Old Way You Choose It
  Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough
Xgau Sez
  And It Don't Stop
  CG Columns
  Rock&Roll& [new]
  Rock&Roll& [old]
  Music Essays
  Music Reviews
  Book Reviews
  NAJP Blog
  Rolling Stone
  Video Reviews
  Pazz & Jop
Web Site:
  Site Map
  What's New?
Carola Dibbell:
  Carola's Website
CG Search:
Google Search:


  • Kal [Asphalt Tango, 2006] ***
  • Radio Romanista [Asphalt Tango, 2009] B+

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Kal [Asphalt Tango, 2006]
Roma guitar-violin-accordion postmodernists whose emotions translate better at higher speeds ("Dvojka," "Obrenovac Boogie"). ***

Radio Romanista [Asphalt Tango, 2009]
Guitarist Dragan Ristic is a Serbian Roma impresario-bandleader-propagandist whose preservationism is proudly mongrel in the great Roma tradition. Where Kal's 2006 debut was beefed up by guest instrumentalists and vocalists, the follow-up showcases Ristic's seven-piece "Rock'n'Roma" touring unit, which is less full, but peppier. I'll take the tradeoff--try sitting still for the kickoff "Krasnokalipsa," the DNA-altering "Romozom," or the bitter-in-translation "Ding Deng Dong." But I could use more input from the likes of Serbian rapper Marcelo at the start and Serbian sister Jelena Markovic at the end. And I still wish Ristic sang not just in Romany, Serbian, Spanish, and French, but English, dammit. Hey, over here! We're the superpower! Aren't we? B+