Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Ray Parker Jr. & Raydio: A Woman Needs Love [Arista, 1981]
Parker's mild-mannered description of what happens to those stingy with, er, respect--"You might come home early and get your feelings hurt"--typifies his understated autofunk. Playing guitar, synthesizer, piano, and drums as well as his home bass, which doesn't sound like a lead instrument either, he serves up eight tunes that bump and/or swoon into ear and/or ass with undeniable and virtually unrecallable effectiveness. I like every one, really. But don't ask me which is which--or why it matters. B+