Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide by Review Date: 1972-12-01


Melton, Levy and the Dey Brothers: Melton, Levy and the Dey Brothers (Columbia, 1972) Barry Melton, once the energetic young comer behind Country Joe, has done a classic Marin County cool-out. He always loved soul music, so now he makes laid-back soul music. I prefer Gamble and Huff. A sly, plaintive road song, "Highway 1," wasn't written by anyone in the band, and the rest varies between pleasant and unremarkable. Melton's previous solo album was tasteless, but at least it had some passion. C

Professor Longhair: New Orleans Piano (Atlantic, 1972) Thirteen boogie blues (from sessions in 1949 and 1953) by one of Dr. John's earliest mentors, a local legend named Roy Byrd. The kind of record that's nice to have around because you're not likely to own anything remotely like it, but the liner notes make you wonder why Atlantic didn't trouble to obtain rights to all the stuff on other labels. B+

John David Souther: John David Souther (Asylum, 1972) In a club, this person whines like any other acoustic singer-songwriter, but backed by Los Angeles' finest he whines like a real country-rock singer. That is, he sounds insipid until you listen close, when you discover that he isn't even that nice. C+

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