Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Macka-B: Natural Suntan [Ariwa, 1990]
He's too big to talk revenge, not unlike his hero Nelson Mandela--even when he's boosting melanin, he thinks it's a shame his oppressors turn the color of watermelon out in the sun. There are a lot of rhymes here because he has a lot to say, and just in case you think the truth is always neat, a lot of the rhymes are charged with dissonant synth splats. The motormouth insults of "Get Rid of Maggie" are fit company for "Stand Down Margaret" or "Madame Medusa" or "Tramp the Dirt Down." When the nearest thing to a low point is a sweet Mandela tribute that steals a chorus from Curtis Mayfield, you're up there. A-